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Sample records for mercury mining activities

  1. Mercury pollution by mining activities in Rayo Rojo mining district, Apolobamba (Bolivia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teran-Mita, T.; Faz Cano, A.; Muñoz, M.; Millán, R.; Salvador, F.

    2009-04-01

    In Bolivia, metal mining activities since historical times have been one of the most important causes of the environmental degradation. This is the case of the Natural Integrated Management Area of Apolobamba (Department of La Paz, Bolivia), where intense gold mining activities have been carried out from former times to present days, with very little gold extraction and very scarce mineral processing technology. In Apolobamba mercury is still being used in the amalgam processes and this might conduct to high Hg contents. Inhabitants of this area consume fish from lakes and rivers, and use the waters for the livestock, domestic use, and irrigation. The aim of this work was to evaluate mercury impact into the soil-plant-water system. The Technical University of Cartagena, Spain, through the Research Group "Sustainable Use, Management and Reclamation of Soil and Water", carried out a research, in the most intense affected gold extraction zones in Apolobamba, among them Rayo Rojo, where mining activity is mainly gold extraction, although the extracted mineral volume and technology used is low. Rayo Rojo is located in the central part of ANMI - Apolobamba (in the andean region), inside of Pelechuco municipality; the area belongs biogeographically to the Altoandina and Puna. This district, located in Apolobamba mountain-range, where altitudes above 5.000 m.a.s.l are reached. Water, soil, sediment and plant samples were taken around the operations mining sites and total mercury analysed. Mercury content was determined by AMA-254 model, based on the thermal decomposition of the sample and collection of the Hg vapour on a gold amalgamator. The analysis is performed from solid samples without any further preparation. Samples are initially dried at 125°C and then thermally decomposed at the temperature of 550°C. Mercury vapour is then trapped on the gold amalgamator. AMA-254 method certificated standards were BCR 62-BCR 281. Preliminary results show high Hg concentrations

  2. Mercury speciation and dispersion from an active gold mine at the West Wits area, South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lusilao-Makiese, J G; Tessier, E; Amouroux, D; Tutu, H; Chimuka, L; Weiersbye, I; Cukrowska, E M

    2016-01-01

    Total mercury (HgTOT), inorganic mercury (IHg), and methylmercury (MHg) were determined in dry season waters, sediments, and tailings from an active mine which has long history of gold exploitation. Although HgTOT in waters was generally low (0.03 to 19.60 ng L(-1)), the majority of the samples had proportions of MHg of at least 90 % of HgTOT which denotes a substantial methylation potential of the mine watersheds. Mercury was relatively high in tailing materials (up to 867 μg kg(-1)) and also in the mine sediments (up to 837 μg kg(-1)) especially in samples collected near tailing storage facilities and within a receiving water dam. Sediment profiles revealed mercury enrichment and enhanced methylation rate at deeper layers. The presence of IHg and decaying plants (organic matter) in the watersheds as well as the anoxic conditions of bulk sediments are believed to be some of the key factors favoring the mercury methylation at the site.

  3. Mercury Speciation in Contaminated Soils from Old Mining Activities in Mexico Using a Chemical Selective Extraction

    OpenAIRE

    Gavilán-García, Irma; Santos-Santos, Elvira; Tovar-Gálvez, Luis R.; Gavilán-García, Arturo; Suárez, Sara; Olmos, Jesús

    2008-01-01

    Amalgamation was heavily used in mining since 1557 in Spanish Colonies. In Mexico and other parts of Latin-America, this process generated tailings which were left aside in the mine backyards. In the valley of Zacatecas, tailings were carried out of the mines due to the run-off from the mountains and contaminated most of the Zacatecan Valley which most important economic activity is agricultural (crop and livestock raising). The main concern in this area is the high level of total mercury fou...

  4. The Effect of Mercury Mining Activities on Oak Forest in the Almaden Area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Villadoniga, M.; Sierra, M. J.; Millan, R.

    2009-01-01

    This scientific-technical report is the result of the research work carried out by Maite Villadoniga Garcia, to obtain the Master's Final Project, this has been developed at the Unit of Soil Degradation in the Department of Environment at CIEMAT. Two main reasons are important for the study of the vegetation in Almaden, firstly to ascertain the state in which they find the different landscapes surrounding the mine and secondly, it would be interesting to know the potential applications for recovery areas, degraded by this type of mining. This report presents the initial analysis of a natural area where there has not been activity related to mining of mercury, but their lithologic conditions and proximity to the mine of Almaden (within 3 km) make it a space in which they are both elevated mercury concentrations in soil (1.25 to 35.55 mg kg - 1) and plant species (Quercus ilex: 0.10-2.29 mg kg - 1; Pseudovernia sp. 1.10-21.06 mg kg - 1). We can conclude after this study that the natural vegetation of the area if they had been affected by years of mining, although not find any obvious signs of damage to these ecosystems and that different factors affect the uptake of mercury by of different species. (Author) 37 refs.

  5. No effect of mercury exposure on kidney function during ongoing artisanal gold mining activities in Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, Luz Helena Sánchez; Rodríguez-Villamizar, Laura Andrea; Flórez-Vargas, Oscar; Fiallo, Yolanda Vargas; Ordoñez, Álvaro; Gutiérrez, Myriam Del Carmen

    2017-01-01

    This cross-sectional study examined whether people who are exposed to mercury (Hg) vapours in ongoing artisanal gold mining activities have alteration in kidney function monitoring parameters. The study enrolled 164 miners and 127 participant controls. The Hg concentrations for miners and control participants were measured in blood (B-Hg; median 7.0 vs. 2.5 µg/L), urine (U-Hg; median 3.9 vs. 1.5 µg/g creatinine) and hair (H-Hg; median 0.8 vs. 0.4 µg/g hair). The biomarkers of renal function were creatinine, albumin and excretion of β-2 microglobulin. Glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) was calculated using the chronic kidney disease epidemiology collaboration equation. Significant statistical differences were found in Hg concentrations and eGFR levels between the two study groups ( p association was found between the prevalence of reduced eGFR (associated with Hg vapour exposure in ongoing artisanal gold mining, whose population has a level of Hg exposure from low to moderate (B-Hg from 3.4 to 11.0 µg/L and U-Hg from 1.3 to 9.6 µg/g creatinine).

  6. Mercury content in electrum from artisanal mining site of Mongolia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murao, Satoshi; Naito, Kazuki; Dejidmaa, Gunchin; Sie, Soey H.

    2006-01-01

    In Mongolia, artisanal gold mining, modern gold rush, in which people use mercury to extract gold, is being proliferated rapidly and the mercury contamination of mining site is becoming a serious social issue. For the risk assessment of mercury, it is necessary to understand how much mercury is introduced to the environment from what kind of materials during mining activity. It is already known that major contribution of the contamination comes from mercury that was bought at shops and brought to mining sites by miners. However, no information is available on how much mercury is removed from electrum (natural gold grain) to the environment. Since gold deposit is always accompanied by mercury anomaly, it is anticipated that electrum grains contain some amount of mercury of natural origin, and this mercury (primary mercury) contributes to some extent to the contamination. In order to clarify how much mercury is incorporated in electrum grains, micro-PIXE at CSIRO was used for grain-by-grain analysis. The result showed that electrum from study area contains mercury up to 8260 ppm. It is concluded that for the risk management of mercury contamination, release of natural mercury from electrum grains during smelting must not be ignored

  7. Measuring total mercury due to small-scale gold mining activities to determine community vulnerability in Cihonje, Central Java, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sari, Mega M; Inoue, Takanobu; Matsumoto, Yoshitaka; Yokota, Kuriko

    2016-01-01

    This research is comparative study of gold mining and non-gold mining areas, using four community vulnerability indicators. Vulnerability indicators are exposure degree, contamination rate, chronic, and acute toxicity. Each indicator used different samples, such as wastewater from gold mining process, river water from Tajum river, human hair samples, and health questionnaire. This research used cold vapor atomic absorption spectrometry to determine total mercury concentration. The result showed that concentration of total mercury was 2,420 times than the maximum content of mercury permitted in wastewater based on the Indonesian regulation. Moreover, the mercury concentration in river water reached 685 ng/l, exceeding the quality threshold standards of the World Health Organization (WHO). The mercury concentration in hair samples obtained from the people living in the research location was considered to identify the health quality level of the people or as a chronic toxicity indicator. The highest mercury concentration--i.e. 17 ng/mg, was found in the gold mining respondents. Therefore, based on the total mercury concentration in the four indicators, the community in the gold mining area were more vulnerable to mercury than communities in non-gold mining areas. It was concluded that the community in gold mining area was more vulnerable to mercury contamination than the community in non-gold mining area.

  8. Mercury exposure in a high fish eating Bolivian Amazonian population with intense small-scale gold-mining activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbieri, Flavia Laura; Cournil, Amandine; Gardon, Jacques

    2009-08-01

    Methylmercury exposure in Amazonian communities through fish consumption has been widely documented in Brazil. There is still a lack of data in other Amazonian countries, which is why we conducted this study in the Bolivian Amazon basin. Simple random sampling was used from a small village located in the lower Beni River, where there is intense gold mining and high fish consumption. All participants were interviewed and hair samples were taken to measure total mercury concentrations. The hair mercury geometric mean in the general population was 3.02 microg/g (CI: 2.69-3.37; range: 0.42-15.65). Age and gender were not directly associated with mercury levels. Fish consumption showed a positive relation and so did occupation, especially small-scale gold mining. Hair mercury levels were lower than those found in Brazilian studies, but still higher than in non-exposed populations. It is necessary to assess mercury exposure in the Amazonian regions where data is still lacking, using a standardized indicator.

  9. Below a Historic Mercury Mine: Non-linear Patterns of Mercury Bioaccumulation in Aquatic Organisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haas, J.; Ichikawa, G.; Ode, P.; Salsbery, D.; Abel, J.

    2001-12-01

    Unlike most heavy metals, mercury is capable of bioaccumulating in aquatic food-chains, primarily because it is methylated by bacteria in sediment to the more toxic methylmercury form. Mercury concentrations in a number of riparian systems in California are highly elevated as a result of historic mining activities. These activities included both the mining of cinnabar in the coastal ranges to recover elemental mercury and the use of elemental mercury in the gold fields of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The most productive mercury mining area was the New Almaden District, now a county park, located in the Guadalupe River drainage of Santa Clara County, where cinnabar was mined and retorted for over 100 years. As a consequence, riparian systems in several subwatersheds of the Guadalupe River drainage are contaminated with total mercury concentrations that exceed state hazardous waste criteria. Mercury concentrations in fish tissue frequently exceed human health guidelines. However, the potential ecological effects of these elevated mercury concentrations have not been thoroughly evaluated. One difficulty is in extrapolating sediment concentrations to fish tissue concentrations without accounting for physical and biological processes that determine bioaccumulation patterns. Many processes, such as methylation and demethylation of mercury by bacteria, assimilation efficiency in invertebrates, and metabolic rates in fish, are nonlinear, a factor that often confounds attempts to evaluate the effects of mercury contamination on aquatic food webs. Sediment, benthic macroinvertebrate, and fish tissue samples were collected in 1998 from the Guadalupe River drainage in Santa Clara County at 13 sites upstream and downstream from the historic mining district. Sediment and macroinvertebrate samples were analyzed for total mercury and methylmercury. Fish samples were analyzed for total mercury as whole bodies, composited by species and size. While linear correlations of sediment

  10. Advanced mercury removal from gold leachate solutions prior to gold and silver extraction: a field study from an active gold mine in Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matlock, Matthew M; Howerton, Brock S; Van Aelstyn, Mike A; Nordstrom, Fredrik L; Atwood, David A

    2002-04-01

    Mercury contamination in the Gold-Cyanide Process (GCP) is a serious health and environmental problem. Following the heap leaching of gold and silver ores with NaCN solutions, portions of the mercury-cyano complexes often adhere to the activated carbon (AC) used to extract the gold. During the electrowinning and retorting steps, mercury can be (and often is) emitted to the air as a vapor. This poses a severe health hazard to plant workers and the local environment. Additional concerns relate to the safety of workers when handling the mercury-laden AC. Currently, mercury treatment from the heap leach solution is nonexistent. This is due to the fact that chelating ligands which can effectively work under the adverse pH conditions (as present in the heap leachate solutions) do not exist. In an effort to economically and effectively treat the leachate solution prior to passing over the AC, a dipotassium salt of 1,3-benzenediamidoethanethiol (BDET2-) has been developed to irreversibly bind and precipitate the mercury. The ligand has proven to be highly effective by selectively reducing mercury levels from average initial concentrations of 34.5 ppm (parts per million) to 0.014 ppm within 10 min and to 0.008 ppm within 15 min. X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR), Raman, and infrared (IR) spectroscopy demonstrate the formation of a mercury-ligand compound, which remains insoluble over pH ranges of 0.0-14.0. Leachate samples from an active gold mine in Peru have been analyzed using cold vapor atomic fluorescence (CVAF) and inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES) for metal concentrations before and after treatment with the BDET2- ligand.

  11. MERCURY AND ARSENIC CONTAMINATION FROM SMALL SCALE GOLD MINING ACTIVITIES AT SELOGIRI AREA, CENTRAL JAVA, INDONESIA

    OpenAIRE

    Harijoko, Agung; Htun, Tin May; Saputra, Rodhie; Warmada, I Wayan; Setijadji, Lucas Donny; Imai, Akira; Watanabe, Koichiro

    2015-01-01

    Small scale gold mines discussed here are located at Selogiri area, Central Java, Indonesia which was mined by local community mainly during gold rush in 1990s. This Selogiri gold deposit genetically is characterized by porphyry mineralization overprinted by epithermal system. The ore minerals assemblage consists of pyrite, sphalerite, chalcopyrite, galena, chalcocite and rare arsenopyrite. Chemical analysis of soil and stream sediment sampled over 1.5 km across at the Selogiri gold extra...

  12. The impact of small-scale mining activities on the levels of mercury in the environment. The case of Prestea and its environs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Serfor-Armah, Y.; Adotey, D.K.; Nyarko, B.J.B.; Akaho, E.H.K.; Adomako, D.

    2004-01-01

    To obtain the baseline information of mercury pollution due to gold mining activities in Prestea and its environs total mercury (T-Hg) concentrations were measured in water and stream sediment. The samples were analyzed by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). They were irradiated and counted without any preconcentration. Higher levels of T-Hg concentration were found in samples at the sites with extensive small-scale 'galamsey' gold mining activities than at the sites with low small-scale 'galamsey' activities. Concentrations varied between 6.80-19.82 mg/l for water and 28.90-84.30 mg/kg in sediment at sites with extensive small-scale mining activities. At low small-scale mining sites concentration levels for T-Hg varied between 0.50-9.10 mg/l and 1.20-22.75 mg/kg in water and sediment, respectively. The concentration levels of T-Hg in water from all the sampling sites are in excess of the WHO tolerable limit of 0.001 mg/l for drinking water. (author)

  13. Mercury pollution in Wuchuan mercury mining area, Guizhou, Southwestern China: the impacts from large scale and artisanal mercury mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ping; Feng, Xinbin; Qiu, Guangle; Shang, Lihai; Wang, Shaofeng

    2012-07-01

    To evaluate the environmental impacts from large scale mercury mining (LSMM) and artisanal mercury mining (AMM), total mercury (THg) and methyl mercury (MeHg) were determined in mine waste, ambient air, stream water and soil samples collected from Wuchuan mercury (Hg) mining area, Guizhou, Southwestern China. Mine wastes from both LSMM and AMM contained high THg concentrations, which are important Hg contamination sources to the local environment. Total gaseous mercury (TGM) concentrations in the ambient air near AMM furnaces were highly elevated, which indicated that AMM retorting is a major source of Hg emission. THg concentrations in the stream water varied from 43 to 2100 ng/L, where the elevated values were mainly found in the vicinity of AMM and mine waste heaps of LSMM. Surface soils were seriously contaminated with Hg, and land using types and organic matter played an important role in accumulation and transportation of Hg in soil. The results indicated heavy Hg contaminations in the study area, which were resulted from both LSMM and AMM. The areas impacted by LSMM were concentrated in the historical mining and smelting facilities, while Hg pollution resulted from AMM can be distributed anywhere in the Hg mining area. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Mercury Pollution from Small-Scale Gold Mining Can Be Stopped by Implementing the Gravity-Borax Method

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Køster-Rasmussen, Rasmus; Westergaard, Maria L; Brasholt, Marie

    2016-01-01

    Mercury is used globally to extract gold in artisanal and small-scale gold mining. The mercury-free gravity-borax method for gold extraction was introduced in two mining communities using mercury in the provinces Kalinga and Camarines Norte. This article describes project activities...... organization facilitated the shift in Kalinga. In conclusion, the gravity-borax method is a doable alternative to mercury use in artisanal and small-scale gold mining, but support from the civil society is needed....

  15. Mercury risk in poultry in the Wanshan Mercury Mine, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yin, Runsheng; Zhang, Wei; Sun, Guangyi; Feng, Zhaohui; Hurley, James P.; Yang, Liyuan; Shang, Lihai; Feng, Xinbin

    2017-01-01

    In this study, total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations in muscles (leg and breast), organs (intestine, heart, stomach, liver) and blood were investigated for backyard chickens, ducks and geese of the Wanshan Mercury Mine, China. THg in poultry meat products range from 7.9 to 3917.1 ng/g, most of which exceeded the Chinese national standard limit for THg in meat (50 ng/g). Elevated MeHg concentrations (0.4–62.8 ng/g) were also observed in meat products, suggesting that poultry meat can be an important human MeHg exposure source. Ducks and geese showed higher Hg levels than chickens. For all poultry species, the highest Hg concentrations were observed in liver (THg: 23.2–3917.1 ng/g; MeHg: 7.1–62.8 ng/g) and blood (THg: 12.3–338.0 ng/g; MeHg: 1.4–17.6 ng/g). We estimated the Hg burdens in chickens (THg: 15.3–238.1 μg; MeHg: 2.2–15.6 μg), ducks (THg: 15.3–238.1 μg; MeHg: 3.5–14.7 μg) and geese (THg: 83.8–93.4 μg; MeHg: 15.4–29.7 μg). To not exceed the daily intake limit for THg (34.2 μg/day) and MeHg (6 μg/day), we suggested that the maximum amount (g) for chicken leg, breast, heart, stomach, intestine, liver, and blood should be 1384, 1498, 2315, 1214, 1081, 257, and 717, respectively; the maximum amount (g) for duck leg, breast, heart, stomach, intestine, liver, and blood should be 750, 1041, 986, 858, 752, 134, and 573, respectively; and the maximum amount (g) for goose leg, breast, heart, stomach, intestine, liver, and blood should be 941, 1051, 1040, 1131, 964, 137, and 562, respectively. - Highlights: • Elevated mercury levels were observed in poultry from Wanshan Mercury Mine, China. • Ducks and geese showed higher mercury levels than chickens. • Liver and blood showed the highest mercury levels. • Poultry can be an important dietary Hg exposure source for local residents. - High levels of Hg associated with poultry surrounding the Wanshan Mercury Mine pose a great risk of Hg exposure to

  16. Mercury contamination from artisanal gold mining in Antioquia, Colombia: The world's highest per capita mercury pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cordy, Paul; Veiga, Marcello M; Salih, Ibrahim; Al-Saadi, Sari; Console, Stephanie; Garcia, Oseas; Mesa, Luis Alberto; Velásquez-López, Patricio C; Roeser, Monika

    2011-12-01

    The artisanal gold mining sector in Colombia has 200,000 miners officially producing 30tonnes Au/a. In the Northeast of the Department of Antioquia, there are 17 mining towns and between 15,000 and 30,000 artisanal gold miners. Guerrillas and paramilitary activities in the rural areas of Antioquia pushed miners to bring their gold ores to the towns to be processed in Processing Centers or entables. These Centers operate in the urban areas amalgamating the whole ore, i.e. without previous concentration, and later burn gold amalgam without any filtering/condensing system. Based on mercury mass balance in 15 entables, 50% of the mercury added to small ball mills (cocos) is lost: 46% with tailings and 4% when amalgam is burned. In just 5 cities of Antioquia, with a total of 150,000 inhabitants: Segovia, Remedios, Zaragoza, El Bagre, and Nechí, there are 323 entables producing 10-20tonnes Au/a. Considering the average levels of mercury consumption estimated by mass balance and interviews of entables owners, the mercury consumed (and lost) in these 5 municipalities must be around 93tonnes/a. Urban air mercury levels range from 300ng Hg/m(3) (background) to 1million ng Hg/m(3) (inside gold shops) with 10,000ng Hg/m(3) being common in residential areas. The WHO limit for public exposure is 1000ng/m(3). The total mercury release/emissions to the Colombian environment can be as high as 150tonnes/a giving this country the shameful first position as the world's largest mercury polluter per capita from artisanal gold mining. One necessary government intervention is to cut the supply of mercury to the entables. In 2009, eleven companies in Colombia legally imported 130tonnes of metallic mercury, much of it flowing to artisanal gold mines. Entables must be removed from urban centers and technical assistance is badly needed to improve their technology and reduce emissions. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Investigating respirable particulates (PM10) around the world's largest mercury mine, Almaden, Spain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gibbons, W.; Jones, T. [Cardiff Univ., Cardiff, Wales (United Kingdom). Dept. of Earth Sciences; Moreno, T.; Richards, R. [Cardiff Univ., Cardiff, Wales (United Kingdom). School of Biosciences; Higueras, P. [Almaden Univ. of Castilla-La Mancha, Almaden (Spain). Dept. of Geological Engineering

    2003-07-01

    The Almaden area in Spain has been mined for mercury since pre-Roman days. There is no evidence for significant contamination of the groundwater supply, since the lack of pyrite in the mercury deposits has prevented the formation of acid mine drainage. However, the main recognized environmental problem related to mercury mining has been the progressive poisoning of workers who are in direct contact with mercury vapours. This paper presents results of a study in which dust samples were collected from former mining and urban locations around Almaden. The samples were processed to extract their fine, respirable fraction. Mining activities have left contaminated ground, which under semi-arid conditions has created respirable mercury-bearing dusts. In some places the ground is severely contaminated with mercury as cinnabar and as schuetteite. Some of the contaminated areas are used for livestock grazing and growing plants for human consumption. A higher incidence of mercury-bearing particles is found in the finer fraction. The sizes of the mercury-bearing resuspended particles at all sites varies from inhalable dust, through respirable dust, to fine and ultrafine size capable of reaching the deepest levels of the lung alveoli. The most significant contamination is associated with old processing plants. Dust samples collected from Almaden, a town of 6,500 inhabitants, were found to contain significant amounts of respirable mercury-bearing aerosols.

  18. Mercury-contaminated hydraulic mining debris in San Francisco Bay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouse, Robin M.; Fuller, Christopher C.; Luoma, Samuel N.; Hornberger, Michelle I.; Jaffe, Bruce E.; Smith, Richard E.

    2010-01-01

    The hydraulic gold-mining process used during the California Gold Rush and in many developing countries today contributes enormous amounts of sediment to rivers and streams. Commonly, accompanying this sediment are contaminants such as elemental mercury and cyanide used in the gold extraction process. We show that some of the mercurycontaminated sediment created by hydraulic gold mining in the Sierra Nevada, between 1852 and 1884, ended up over 250 kilometers (km) away in San Francisco Bay; an example of the far-reaching extent of contamination from such activities.

  19. Risk factors for mercury exposure of children in a rural mining town in northern Chile.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johan Ohlander

    Full Text Available Traditional gold mining is associated with mercury exposure. Especially vulnerable to its neurotoxic effects is the developing nervous system of a child. We aimed to investigate risk factors of mercury exposure among children in a rural mining town in Chile.Using a validated questionnaire distributed to the parents of the children, a priori mercury risk factors, potential exposure pathways and demographics of the children were obtained. Mercury levels were measured through analyzing fingernail samples. Logistic regression modeling the effect of risk factors on mercury levels above the 75(th percentile were made, adjusted for potential confounders.The 288 children had a mean age of 9.6 years (SD = 1.9. The mean mercury level in the study population was 0.13 µg/g (SD 0.11, median 0.10, range 0.001-0.86 µg/g. The strongest risk factor for children's odds of high mercury levels (>75(th percentile, 0.165 µg/g was to play inside a house where a family member worked with mercury (OR adjusted 3.49 95% CI 1.23-9.89. Additionally, children whose parents worked in industrial gold mining had higher odds of high mercury levels than children whose parents worked in industrial copper mining or outside mining activities.Mercury exposure through small-scale gold mining might affect children in their home environments. These results may further help to convince the local population of banning mercury burning inside the households.

  20. Thiosulphate assisted phytoextraction of mercury contaminated soils at the Wanshan Mercury Mining District, Southwest China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Wang

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Wanshan, known as the “Mercury Capital” of China, is located in the Southwest of China. Due to the extensive mining and smelting works in the Wanshan area, the local ecosystem has been serious contaminated with mercury. In the present study, a number of soil samples were taken from the Wanshan mercury mining area and the mercury fractionations in soils were analyzed using sequential extraction procedure technique. The obtained results showed that the dominate mercury fractions (represent 95% of total mercury were residual and organic bound mercury. A field trial was conducted in a mercury polluted farmland at the Wanshan mercury mine. Four plant species Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var. ASKYC (ASKYC, Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var.DPDH (DPDH, Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var.CHBD(CHBD, Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var.LDZY (LDZY were tested their ability to extract mercury from soil with thiosulphate amendment. The results indicated that the mercury concentration in the roots and shoots of the four plants were significantly increased with thiosulphate treatment. The mercury phytoextraction yield of ASKYC, DPDH, CHBD and LDZY were 92, 526, 294 and 129 g/ha, respectively

  1. Thiosulphate assisted phytoextraction of mercury contaminated soils at the Wanshan Mercury Mining District, Southwest China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Wang

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Wanshan, known as the “Mercury Capital” of China, is located in the Southwest of China. Due to the extensive mining and smelting works in the Wanshan area, the local ecosystem has been serious contaminated with mercury. In the present study, a number of soil samples were taken from the Wanshan mercury mining area and the mercury fractionations in soils were analyzed using sequential extraction procedure technique. The obtained results showed that the dominate mercury fractions (represent 95% of total mercury were residual and organic bound mercury. A field trial was conducted in a mercury polluted farmland at the Wanshan mercury mine. Four plant species Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var. ASKYC (ASKYC, Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var.DPDH (DPDH, Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var.CHBD(CHBD, Brassica juncea Czern. et Coss.var.LDZY (LDZY were tested their ability to extract mercury from soil with thiosulphate amendment. The results indicated that the mercury concentration in the roots and shoots of the four plants were significantly increased with thiosulphate treatment. The mercury phytoextraction yield of ASKYC, DPDH, CHBD and LDZY were 92, 526, 294 and 129 g/ha, respectively.

  2. Impact of gold mining associated with mercury contamination in soil, biota sediments and tailings in Kenya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odumo, Benjamin Okang'; Carbonell, Gregoria; Angeyo, Hudson Kalambuka; Patel, Jayanti Purshottam; Torrijos, Manuel; Rodríguez Martín, José Antonio

    2014-11-01

    This work considered the environmental impact of artisanal mining gold activity in the Migori-Transmara area (Kenya). From artisanal gold mining, mercury is released to the environment, thus contributing to degradation of soil and water bodies. High mercury contents have been quantified in soil (140 μg kg(-1)), sediment (430 μg kg(-1)) and tailings (8,900 μg kg(-1)), as expected. The results reveal that the mechanism for transporting mercury to the terrestrial ecosystem is associated with wet and dry depositions. Lichens and mosses, used as bioindicators of pollution, are related to the proximity to mining areas. The further the distance from mining areas, the lower the mercury levels. This study also provides risk maps to evaluate potential negative repercussions. We conclude that the Migori-Transmara region can be considered a strongly polluted area with high mercury contents. The technology used to extract gold throughout amalgamation processes causes a high degree of mercury pollution around this gold mining area. Thus, alternative gold extraction methods should be considered to reduce mercury levels that can be released to the environment.

  3. Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining Without Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercury-free techniques are safer for miners, their families and local communities. They can also help miners qualify for certification under fair-mined standards, potentially allowing them to market their gold at higher prices.

  4. Assessment of the mercury emissions from burning mining waste dumps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Białecka

    2016-04-01

    occur and to which the environment and local inhabitants can be exposed, it is important to define the size of the emission of mercury compounds from these objects. Despite the potential threats so far no measurements of mercury concentration which would a llow quantifying this phenomenon have been done. The analyses presented in this article fill this gap. Additionally, initial calculation of annual mercury emissions from burning coal mining waste dumps in Poland is presented.

  5. Distribution and Speciation of Mercury in Mine Waste Dumps

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hojdová, Maria; Navrátil, Tomáš; Rohovec, Jan

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 80, č. 3 (2008), s. 237-241 ISSN 0007-4861 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) KJB300130615 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Keywords : mercury * mine waste * mercury speciation * thermo-desorption analysis Subject RIV: DD - Geochemistry Impact factor: 0.609, year: 2008

  6. Human mercury exposure associated with small-scale gold mining in Burkina Faso.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomicic, Catherine; Vernez, David; Belem, Tounaba; Berode, Michèle

    2011-06-01

    In Burkina Faso, gold ore is one of the main sources of income for an important part of the active population. Artisan gold miners use mercury in the extraction, a toxic metal whose human health risks are well known. The aim of the present study was to assess mercury exposure as well as to understand the exposure determinants of gold miners in Burkinabe small-scale mines. The examined gold miners' population on the different selected gold mining sites was composed by persons who were directly and indirectly related to gold mining activities. But measurement of urinary mercury was performed on workers most susceptible to be exposed to mercury. Thus, occupational exposure to mercury was evaluated among ninety-three workers belonging to eight different gold mining sites spread in six regions of Burkina Faso. Among others, work-related exposure determinants were taken into account for each person during urine sampling as for example amalgamating or heating mercury. All participants were medically examined by a local medical team in order to identify possible symptoms related to the toxic effect of mercury. Mercury levels were high, showing that 69% of the measurements exceeded the ACGIH (American Conference of Industrial Hygienists) biological exposure indice (BEI) of 35 μg per g of creatinine (μg/g-Cr) (prior to shift) while 16% even exceeded 350 μg/g-Cr. Basically, unspecific but also specific symptoms related to mercury toxicity could be underlined among the persons who were directly related to gold mining activities. Only one-third among the studied subpopulation reported about less than three symptoms possibly associated to mercury exposure and nearly half of them suffered from at least five of these symptoms. Ore washers were more involved in the direct handling of mercury while gold dealers in the final gold recovery activities. These differences may explain the overexposure observed in gold dealers and indicate that the refining process is the major source

  7. Methods to reduce mercury pollution is small gold mining operations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pantoja-Timaran, F.; Alvarez-Rodriguez, R.; Rodriguez-Avello, A. S.

    2005-01-01

    The use of mercury for gold beneficiation is still a current practice in small mining operations, mainly in underdeveloped countries, due to the low investment required and necessity of easy to operate systems. But the lack of basic protections makes unavoidable the high pollution of water streams, soils, and in fact, human bodies. some improvements have been done at site like that related to the removal of the mercury from the amalgam, that usually was done in the open air, and now have been changed to the utilization of artisan iron retorts which considerable reduce the emissions of mercury vapors to the atmosphere, but there are still high losses of mercury into the waste solids or tailings coming from the amalgamation process (nearly most of the total weight of the ore treated). In order to reduce the mercury losses into the tailings from the process, this research work has been based in the use of cheap systems, available to the isolated miners, to proof that it is feasible to get an important reduction of the losses and the pollution. the procedure has been accomplished by means of washing the ores with alkaline or detergent agents, together with the use of activated mercury purified by electrowinning in a simple device, easily manufactured in site by the own workers. It is also proven herewith that controlling the time of amalgamation and the total amount of mercury used could reduce the total pollution, and in addition, the gold recovery would be improved. This investigation reports the possibility of a reduction of mercury losses down to 2.4 g per 100 of gold produced (case of rich ores like LaBruja), with gold recovery up to 94%; and 8,6 g per 100 g of gold produced (from ores with average grades like La Gruesa), and gold recoveries in the range of 92%. All that is about 20 to 100 times lower than data reported in current bibliography. The introduction of a previous step of the ore concentration in shaking tables, decreases the total amount of solids for

  8. The Effect of Mercury Mining Activities on Oak Forest in the Almaden Area; El Encinar en el Distrito Minero de Almaden y su Afectacion por la Mineria del Mercurio

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Villadoniga, M.; Sierra, M.J.; Millan, R.

    2009-07-01

    This scientific-technical report is the result of the research work carried out by Maite Villadoniga Garcia, to obtain the Master's Final Project, this has been developed at the Unit of Soil Degradation in the Department of Environment at CIEMAT. Two main reasons are important for the study of the vegetation in Almaden, firstly to ascertain the state in which they find the different landscapes surrounding the mine and secondly, it would be interesting to know the potential applications for recovery areas, degraded by this type of mining. This report presents the initial analysis of a natural area where there has not been activity related to mining of mercury, but their lithologic conditions and proximity to the mine of Almaden (within 3 km) make it a space in which they are both elevated mercury concentrations in soil (1.25 to 35.55 mg kg{sup -}1) and plant species (Quercus ilex: 0.10-2.29 mg kg{sup -}1; Pseudovernia sp. 1.10-21.06 mg kg{sup -}1). We can conclude after this study that the natural vegetation of the area if they had been affected by years of mining, although not find any obvious signs of damage to these ecosystems and that different factors affect the uptake of mercury by of different species. (Author) 37 refs.

  9. The Effect of Mercury Mining Activities on Oak Forest in the Almaden Area; El Encinar en el Distrito Minero de Almaden y su Afectacion por la Mineria del Mercurio

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Villadoniga, M; Sierra, M J; Millan, R

    2009-07-01

    This scientific-technical report is the result of the research work carried out by Maite Villadoniga Garcia, to obtain the Master's Final Project, this has been developed at the Unit of Soil Degradation in the Department of Environment at CIEMAT. Two main reasons are important for the study of the vegetation in Almaden, firstly to ascertain the state in which they find the different landscapes surrounding the mine and secondly, it would be interesting to know the potential applications for recovery areas, degraded by this type of mining. This report presents the initial analysis of a natural area where there has not been activity related to mining of mercury, but their lithologic conditions and proximity to the mine of Almaden (within 3 km) make it a space in which they are both elevated mercury concentrations in soil (1.25 to 35.55 mg kg{sup -}1) and plant species (Quercus ilex: 0.10-2.29 mg kg{sup -}1; Pseudovernia sp. 1.10-21.06 mg kg{sup -}1). We can conclude after this study that the natural vegetation of the area if they had been affected by years of mining, although not find any obvious signs of damage to these ecosystems and that different factors affect the uptake of mercury by of different species. (Author) 37 refs.

  10. Mercury risk in poultry in the Wanshan Mercury Mine, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Runsheng; Zhang, Wei; Sun, Guangyi; Feng, Zhaohui; Hurley, James P; Yang, Liyuan; Shang, Lihai; Feng, Xinbin

    2017-11-01

    In this study, total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations in muscles (leg and breast), organs (intestine, heart, stomach, liver) and blood were investigated for backyard chickens, ducks and geese of the Wanshan Mercury Mine, China. THg in poultry meat products range from 7.9 to 3917.1 ng/g, most of which exceeded the Chinese national standard limit for THg in meat (50 ng/g). Elevated MeHg concentrations (0.4-62.8 ng/g) were also observed in meat products, suggesting that poultry meat can be an important human MeHg exposure source. Ducks and geese showed higher Hg levels than chickens. For all poultry species, the highest Hg concentrations were observed in liver (THg: 23.2-3917.1 ng/g; MeHg: 7.1-62.8 ng/g) and blood (THg: 12.3-338.0 ng/g; MeHg: 1.4-17.6 ng/g). We estimated the Hg burdens in chickens (THg: 15.3-238.1 μg; MeHg: 2.2-15.6 μg), ducks (THg: 15.3-238.1 μg; MeHg: 3.5-14.7 μg) and geese (THg: 83.8-93.4 μg; MeHg: 15.4-29.7 μg). To not exceed the daily intake limit for THg (34.2 μg/day) and MeHg (6 μg/day), we suggested that the maximum amount (g) for chicken leg, breast, heart, stomach, intestine, liver, and blood should be 1384, 1498, 2315, 1214, 1081, 257, and 717, respectively; the maximum amount (g) for duck leg, breast, heart, stomach, intestine, liver, and blood should be 750, 1041, 986, 858, 752, 134, and 573, respectively; and the maximum amount (g) for goose leg, breast, heart, stomach, intestine, liver, and blood should be 941, 1051, 1040, 1131, 964, 137, and 562, respectively. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. [Genotoxic damage among artisanal and small-scale mining workers exposed to mercury].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosales-Rimache, Jaime A; Elizabeth Malca, Nancy; Alarcón, Jhonatan J; Chávez, Manuel; Gonzáles, Marco Antonio

    2013-01-01

    To determine the genotoxic damage among artisanal and small-scale mining workers exposed to mercury. Observational cross-sectional study which evaluated mercury-exposed workers (n=83), whose cells were collected by mouth swab for further staining, microscopic observance, micronuclei count, and other nuclear alterations. 24-hour urine was also collected for the determination of inorganic mercury. 68.7% of participants were male, the mean age being 43 ± 12,4 years (range: 16-76). The average time of occupational exposure to mercury was 12,1 ± 6,7 years, and the contact with mercury was 4,1 ± 3,6 kg per person per day. 93% of participants failed to wear personal protection gear while handling mercury. Results of biological monitoring showed that 17% of participants had concentrations of mercury in urine higher than 2,5 µg/L, this value being the detection limit of the measurement technique used. Results of the genotoxic evaluation evidenced that 15% of people with labor exposure to mercury presented micronuclei in mouth epithelial cells, and other indicators of nuclear alteration such as nucleoplasmic bridges, gemmation and binucleation were found, which are also considered genotoxic events associated to the exposure of physical or chemical risk agents. The finding of micronuclei in mouth epithelial cells reflects genotoxic damage associated to the labor exposure of mercury used in artisanal and small-scale mining activities.

  12. Methyl Mercury Production In Tropical Hydromorphic Soils: Impact Of Gold Mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guedron, S.; Charlet, L.; Harris, J.; Grimaldi, M.; Cossa, D.

    2007-12-01

    Artisanal alluvial gold mining is important in many tropical developing countries and several million people are involved worldwide. The dominant use of mercury for gold amalgamation in this activity leads to mercury accumulation in soils, to sediment contamination and to methyl mercury (MMHg) bioaccumulation along the food chain. In this presentation we will present recent data on methyl mercury production in hydromorphic soils and tailing ponds from a former gold mining area located in French Guiana (South America). Comparison of specific fluxes between a pristine sub watershed and the contaminated watershed shows that former mining activities lead to a large enhancement of dissolved and particulate MMHg emissions at least by a factor of 4 and 6, respectively. MMHg production was identified in sediments from tailing ponds and in surrounding hydromorphic soils. Moreover, interstitial soil water and tailing pond water profiles sampled in an experimental tailing pond demonstrate the presence of a large MMHg production in the suboxic areas. Both tailing ponds and hydromorphic soils present geochemical conditions that are favorable to bacterial mercury methylation (high soil Hg content, high aqueous ferric iron and dissolved organic carbon concentrations). Although sulfate-reducing bacteria have been described as being the principal mercury methylating bacteria, the positive correlation between dissolved MMHg and ferrous iron concentrations argue for a significant role of iron-reducing bacteria. Identifications by sequencing fragments of 16S rRNA from total soil DNA support these interpretations. This study demonstrates that current and past artisanal gold mining in the tropics lead to methyl mercury production in contaminated areas. As artisanal activities are increasing with increasing gold prices, the bio- magnification of methyl mercury in fish presents an increasing threat to local populations whose diet relies on fish consumption.

  13. Monitoring of the mercury mining site Almadén implementing remote sensing technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid, Thomas; Rico, Celia; Rodríguez-Rastrero, Manuel; José Sierra, María; Javier Díaz-Puente, Fco; Pelayo, Marta; Millán, Rocio

    2013-08-01

    The Almadén area in Spain has a long history of mercury mining with prolonged human-induced activities that are related to mineral extraction and metallurgical processes before the closure of the mines and a more recent post period dominated by projects that reclaim the mine dumps and tailings and recuperating the entire mining area. Furthermore, socio-economic alternatives such as crop cultivation, livestock breeding and tourism are increasing in the area. Up till now, only scattered information on these activities is available from specific studies. However, improved acquisition systems using satellite borne data in the last decades opens up new possibilities to periodically study an area of interest. Therefore, comparing the influence of these activities on the environment and monitoring their impact on the ecosystem vastly improves decision making for the public policy makers to implement appropriate land management measures and control environmental degradation. The objective of this work is to monitor environmental changes affected by human-induced activities within the Almadén area occurring before, during and after the mine closure over a period of nearly three decades. To achieve this, data from numerous sources at different spatial scales and time periods are implemented into a methodology based on advanced remote sensing techniques. This includes field spectroradiometry measurements, laboratory analyses and satellite borne data of different surface covers to detect land cover and use changes throughout the mining area. Finally, monitoring results show that the distribution of areas affected by mercury mining is rapidly diminishing since activities ceased and that rehabilitated mining areas form a new landscape. This refers to mine tailings that have been sealed and revegetated as well as an open pit mine that has been converted to an "artificial" lake surface. Implementing a methodology based on remote sensing techniques that integrate data from

  14. Mercury and trace element contents of Donbas coals and associated mine water in the vicinity of Donetsk, Ukraine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolker, A.; Panov, B.S.; Panov, Y.B.; Landa, E.R.; Conko, K.M.; Korchemagin, V.A.; Shendrik, T.; McCord, J.D.

    2009-01-01

    Mercury-rich coals in the Donets Basin (Donbas region) of Ukraine were sampled in active underground mines to assess the levels of potentially harmful elements and the potential for dispersion of metals through use of this coal. For 29 samples representing c11 to m3 Carboniferous coals, mercury contents range from 0.02 to 3.5 ppm (whole-coal dry basis). Mercury is well correlated with pyritic sulfur (0.01 to 3.2 wt.%), with an r2 of 0.614 (one outlier excluded). Sulfides in these samples show enrichment of minor constituents in late-stage pyrite formed as a result of interaction of coal with hydrothermal fluids. Mine water sampled at depth and at surface collection points does not show enrichment of trace metals at harmful levels, indicating pyrite stability at subsurface conditions. Four samples of coal exposed in the defunct open-cast Nikitovka mercury mines in Gorlovka have extreme mercury contents of 12.8 to 25.5 ppm. This coal was formerly produced as a byproduct of extracting sandstone-hosted cinnabar ore. Access to these workings is unrestricted and small amounts of extreme mercury-rich coal are collected for domestic use, posing a limited human health hazard. More widespread hazards are posed by the abandoned Nikitovka mercury processing plant, the extensive mercury mine tailings, and mercury enrichment of soils extending into residential areas of Gorlovka.

  15. Industrial and natural sources of gaseous elemental mercury in the Almadén district (Spain): an updated report on this issue after the ceasing of mining and metallurgical activities in 2003 and major land reclamation works.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higueras, Pablo; Esbrí, José María; Oyarzun, Roberto; Llanos, Willans; Martínez-Coronado, Alba; Lillo, Javier; López-Berdonces, Miguel Angel; García-Noguero, Eva Maria

    2013-08-01

    Two events during the last decade had major environmental repercussions in Almadén town (Spain). First it was the ceasing of activities in the mercury mine and metallurgical facilities in 2003, and then the finalization of the restoration works on the main waste dump in 2008. The combination of both events brought about a dramatic drop in the emissions of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) to the atmosphere. Although no one would now call the Almadén area as 'mercury-free', the GEM levels have fallen beneath international reference safety levels for the first time in centuries. This has been a major breakthrough because in less than one decade the site went from GEM levels in the order of "tens of thousands" to mere "tens" nanogram per cubic meter. Although these figures are per se a remarkable achievement, they do not mark the end of the environmental concerns in the Almadén district. Two other sites remain as potential environmental hazards. (1) The Las Cuevas mercury storage complex, a partially restored ex-mining site where liquid mercury is being stored. The MERSADE Project (LIFE-European Union) has tested the Las Cuevas complex as a potential site for the installation of a future European prototype safe deposit of surplus mercury from industrial activities. Despite restoration works carried out in 2004, the Las Cuevas complex can still be regarded as hotspot of mercury contamination, with high concentrations above 800μgg(-1) Hgsoil and 300ngm(-3) Hggas. However, as predicted by air contamination modeling using the ISC-AERMOD software, GEM concentrations fade away in a short distance following the formation of a NW-SE oriented narrow plume extending for a few hundred meters from the complex perimeter. (2) Far more dangerous from the human health perspective is the Almadenejos area, hosting the small Almadenejos village, the so-called Cerco de Almadenejos (CDA; an old metallurgical precinct), and the mines of La Nueva Concepción, La Vieja Concepción and El

  16. Mercury contamination of soils in vicinity of historical mining area

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hojdová, Maria; Navrátil, Tomáš; Rohovec, Jan; Penížek, V.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 34, 4/6 (2008), s. 1340257-1340257 ISSN 0161-6951. [International Geological Congress /33./. 06.08.2008-14.08.2008, Oslo ] R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) KJB300130615 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Keywords : mercury * speciation * thermo-desorption analysis * mining * soils Subject RIV: DD - Geochemistry

  17. Artisanal Mining of Gold with Mercury in Ghana

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    USER

    ³Department of Chemistry, Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, P.O. Box LG 80, Legon, Ghana ... The paper examines the environmental impact of artisanal mining of gold ... numerous deaths resulting from the eating of Hg-contaminated fish or .... The improper use and handling of mercury can also lead to potential health.

  18. Mercury and arsenic in the gold mining regions of the Ankobra River basin in Ghana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bannerman, W.; Potin-Gautier, M.; Amoureux, D.; Tellier, S.; Rambaud, A.; Babut, M.; Adimado, A.; Beinhoff, C.

    2003-05-01

    The river Ankobra flows through the principal gold mining centres in Western Ghana, draining a total area of 8272 km^2 to join the Atlantic ocean. Mercury is used by thousands of small-scale miners in the region to amalgamate gold. Ores mined in some deep shafts and surface mines are arsenopyrites and the region is marked by the presence of heaps of arsenic - rich mine tailings from both past and recent activities. This study was conducted to assess the impact of mining activities on the distribution and speciation of arsenic and mercury in the aquatic environment of the Ankobra River. In all, water (filtered and non-filtered) and bed sediments were collected from various locations within the watershed. Principal parameters investigated include total mercury, arsenic (III), arsenic (V), monomethylarsonic acid (MMAA) and dimethylarsinic acid (DMAA). Seasonal and spatial variations of these parameters were investigated. Quality control systems were adopted at both the environmental and analytical stages of the study. ln general, areas close to the mining centres are the most pollilited. As (V)/As (III) ratios in water are reversed after the first 100-km of the river length with the onset of industrial influence downstream.

  19. Health and environmental assessment of mercury exposure in a gold mining community in Western Mindanao, Philippines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cortes-Maramba, Nelia; Reyes, Jose Paciano; Francisco-Rivera, Ana Trinidad; Akagi, Hirokatsu; Sunio, Rose; Panganiban, Lynn Crisanta

    2006-10-01

    The small-scale gold mining activities using mercury began in the late 1980s in Sibutad, Western Mindanao. It is located very near the Murcielagos Bay with tailing ponds directly discharging into bodies of water. This cross-sectional study aimed to determine the health and environmental effects of gold mining activities on the community. Residents were randomly selected and classified into two groups, namely, the directly exposed and indirectly exposed populations using a set inclusion criteria. Complete medical and laboratory examinations were performed. Environmental and biologic samples were collected for total mercury and methylmercury determinations. The results showed that the directly exposed group had significantly higher mean blood total mercury and methylmercury levels in comparison with the indirectly exposed population. Although there were no significant differences between hair total mercury and methylmercury levels, there was a trend for higher levels of these biomarkers among the directly exposed residents as compared with the unexposed group. The absence of statistically significant differences may be attributable to the small sample size. Ambient air quality monitoring for mercury exceeded the allowable levels. However, levels of mercury in drinking water and sediments were within allowable limits. Frequency of gastrointestinal complaints was significantly associated with elevated hair methylmercury levels (p=0.02). Also, there appears to be a trend towards higher blood total mercury levels and frequency of gastrointestinal complaints (p=0.09). An interesting finding in this study was the increasing incidence of elevated diastolic blood pressure with elevated hair total mercury levels (p=0.07). Mercury storage at home is a risk factor.

  20. Mercury Exposure and Health Problems in Urban Artisanal Gold Mining (UAGM in Makassar, South Sulawesi, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hasriwiani Habo Abbas

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Urban artisanal gold mining (UAGM in Makassar, South Sulawesi, Indonesia, has been run by a number of urban gold workers with gold jewelry manufacture as its core activity. The wastes generated from goldsmiths’ activities were further processed by the gold smelters to recover fine gold particles. Smelting gold doré, amalgamation, and burning out the amalgam were the mercury-based gold process usually applied in their work. While working the gold workers are, therefore, potentially exposed to a source of mercury pollution that may cause health problems because of working without proper protection. The aims of this research are to characterize the process of urban artisanal gold mining with the potential mercury exposures during the process, and to assess the health of the gold workers. The results showed that the gold workers had a low educational background, but a relatively high income. The total mercury concentration of gold workers was higher than the control group. They were exposed to intoxicatingly high levels of mercury with the average total mercury concentrations of 6.6 and 10.8 µg/g in the hair of indirect and direct exposed workers, respectively. The health assessment showed that 85% of the gold workers suffered neurological symptoms, such as tremors, and 44%–56% of them experienced restricted fields of vision, slow reflexes, sensory disturbances, unbalanced rigidity, and ataxia. The results also showed that the working years have reasonable correlation with the sum of the positive findings in the 10 neurological symptoms.

  1. Characterisation and modelling of mercury speciation in urban air affected by gold mining - assessment of bioavailability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cukrowska E. M.

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The growing global concern over the release of mercury to the environment has prompted specific inventories that quantify mercury emissions from various sources. Investigations of atmospheric mercury have been mostly done on gaseous species. Although, to assess human expose to mercury, especially in urban areas, the inhalable dust should be included in a study. The Witwatersrand Basin in South Africa is one of the most important gold mining regions in the world. Mercury (Hg, which occurs in gold-bearing ores, was also used for gold recoveries in previous centuries (19th and early 20th century and presently in illegal artisanal mining. The consequences of these mining activities were the release of Hg to the environment, mainly due to AMD from tailings dumps which are presently reprocessed. The city of Johannesburg is a multimillion population exposed strongly to industrial pollution. The aim of this study was to determine the magnitude of mercury pollution in this urban area and assess its bioavailability. The gaseous samples were collected by trapping mercury on various gold traps. Dust samples were collected from a ground and on inhalation levels (1–2 m above a ground. They were later separated into different fractions by micro sieving. Bioavailability of mercury in inhalable dust (25 μm was tested by leaching collected samples with artificial lung fluid (ALF, pH 4.5, Gray’s solution (pH 7.4 and water. The leaching conditions were selected to mimic lungs environment (incubator at 30°C, time 24 hrs, rotation of samples 150 rpm. Total concentrations of mercury in dust fractions were also determined after microwave digestion. The results showed extremely high concentration levels of mercury in air and dust in industrial areas. Especially high levels were found around presently reprocessed old gold tailings dumps, up to 900 000 μgl–1. The levels dropped significantly in CBD area but still showing elevated concentrations up to 10 μgl−1

  2. Mercury emission and dispersion models from soils contaminated by cinnabar mining and metallurgy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llanos, Willians; Kocman, David; Higueras, Pablo; Horvat, Milena

    2011-12-01

    The laboratory flux measurement system (LFMS) and dispersion models were used to investigate the kinetics of mercury emission flux (MEF) from contaminated soils. Representative soil samples with respect to total Hg concentration (26-9770 μg g(-1)) surrounding a decommissioned mercury-mining area (Las Cuevas Mine), and a former mercury smelter (Cerco Metalúrgico de Almadenejos), in the Almadén mercury mining district (South Central Spain), were collected. Altogether, 14 samples were analyzed to determine the variation in mercury emission flux (MEF) versus distance from the sources, regulating two major environmental parameters comprising soil temperature and solar radiation. In addition, the fraction of the water-soluble mercury in these samples was determined in order to assess how MEF from soil is related to the mercury in the aqueous soil phase. Measured MEFs ranged from less than 140 to over 10,000 ng m(-2) h(-1), with the highest emissions from contaminated soils adjacent to point sources. A significant decrease of MEF was then observed with increasing distance from these sites. Strong positive effects of both temperature and solar radiation on MEF was observed. Moreover, MEF was found to occur more easily in soils with higher proportions of soluble mercury compared to soils where cinnabar prevails. Based on the calculated Hg emission rates and with the support of geographical information system (GIS) tools and ISC AERMOD software, dispersion models for atmospheric mercury were implemented. In this way, the gaseous mercury plume generated by the soil-originated emissions at different seasons was modeled. Modeling efforts revealed that much higher emissions and larger mercury plumes are generated in dry and warm periods (summer), while the plume is smaller and associated with lower concentrations of atmospheric mercury during colder periods with higher wind activity (fall). Based on the calculated emissions and the model implementation, yearly emissions from

  3. Methods to reduce mercury pollution in small gold mining operations

    OpenAIRE

    Pantoja-Timarán, F.; Álvarez-Rodríguez, R.; Rodríguez-Avelló, A. S.

    2005-01-01

    The use of mercury for gold beneficiation is still a current practice in small mining operations, mainly in underdeveloped countries, due to the low investment required and necessity of easy to operate systems. But the lack of basic protections makes unavoidable the high pollution of water streams, soils, and in fact, human bodies. Some improvements have been done at site like that related to the removal of the mercury from the amalgam, that usually was done in the open air and now have been ...

  4. Mercury use in small scale gold mining in Ghana: an assessment of its impact on miners

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Biagya, Robert Yakubu

    2002-12-01

    Small scale gold mining is responsible for about 5% of Ghana’s annual gold production. It is estimated that between 80,000 and 100,000 people are engaged in small scale gold mining either on part-time or permanent basis. Amalgamation is the preferred method used by small scale gold miners for extracting free gold from its ores. The rate at which mercury, an important input in this method, is discharged into the atmosphere and water bodies is alarming. This research describes the various mining and processing methods in small scale gold mining and the extent of mercury use and releases to the environment. It discusses mercury and its human and environmental effects. It defines the various forms of mercury, routes of exposure, toxic effects. The levels of exposure to mercury by all groups of small scale gold miners are determined, and the impacts on the miners and the environment are assessed. It concludes that: • Mercury is mainly released into the environment as a result of small scale gold mining through spillage of elemental mercury and evaporation of mercury from the amalgam and sponge gold when they are heated on open fire. • Mercury in environmental samples from small scale gold mining areas is well above standard limit values. • Mercury released into the environment through small scale gold mining impacts negatively on the miners themselves and the general environment. Finally, it recommends the need for the adoption of mercury emission reduction strategies for dealing with the mercury problem. (au)

  5. Mining, metallurgy and the historical origin of mercury pollution in lakes and watercourses in Central Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bindler, Richard; Yu, Ruilian; Hansson, Sophia; Classen, Neele; Karlsson, Jon

    2012-08-07

    In Central Sweden an estimated 80% of the lakes contain fish exceeding health guidelines for mercury. This area overlaps extensively with the Bergslagen ore region, where intensive mining of iron ores and massive sulfide ores occurred over the past millennium. Although only a few mines still operate today, thousands of mineral occurrences and mining sites are documented in the region. Here, we present data on long-term mercury pollution in 16 sediment records from 15 lakes, which indicate that direct release of mercury to lakes and watercourses was already significant prior to industrialization (mines. Although the timing and magnitude of the historical increases in mercury are heterogeneous among lakes, the data provide unambiguous evidence for an incidental release of mercury along with other mining metals to lakes and watercourses, which suggests that the present-day problem of elevated mercury concentrations in the Bergslagen region can trace its roots back to historical mining.

  6. Impact of mercury mine and smelter St. Ana – Podljubelj on spatial distribution of chemical elements in soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tamara Teršič

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the research project was to establish the extension of Hg pollution as a consequence of mining and smelting activities in a narrow Alpine valley. The St. Ana mine was first exploited as early as in 1557 and was finally abandoned in 1902. The entire operating period yielded about 110.000 tons of ore, from which 360 tons of Hg was produced. By soil sampling it was established that on about 9 ha the Hg contents in soil exceed the Slovenian critical values for soil (10 mg/kg. The estimated mercury mean for the studied area is 1.3 mg/kg (0.17 – 718 mg/kg. The highest contents of mercury in soilswere found in the area of the mercury smelter.That is a consequence of former atmospheric emissions and technological losses. High values of Hg were found also in soil on the mine and smelter waste dump. The highest determined contents of Hg (108 mg/kg in this area are almost 7-times lower than thecontents of Hg in the area of the smelter. Mercury in soils generally decrease with depth and distance from the mine and smelter. Apart from the area around the former mine and smelter, mercury appear in higher concentrations also along the road that runs along thevalley, which is due to the use of Hg bearing mine tailings in road construction.

  7. River transport of mercury from artisanal and small-scale gold mining and risks for dietary mercury exposure in Madre de Dios, Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diringer, Sarah E; Feingold, Beth J; Ortiz, Ernesto J; Gallis, John A; Araújo-Flores, Julio M; Berky, Axel; Pan, William K Y; Hsu-Kim, Heileen

    2015-02-01

    Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is a major contributor to deforestation and the largest anthropogenic source of atmospheric mercury worldwide. Despite significant information on the direct health impacts of mercury to ASGM miners, the impact of mercury contamination on downstream communities has not been well characterized, particularly in Peru's Madre de Dios region. In this area, ASGM has increased significantly since 2000 and has led to substantial political and social controversy. This research examined the spatial distribution and transport of mercury through the Madre de Dios River with distance from ASGM activity. This study also characterized risks for dietary mercury exposure to local residents who depend on fish from the river. River sediment, suspended solids from the water column, and fish samples were collected in 2013 at 62 sites near 17 communities over a 560 km stretch of the Madre de Dios River and its major tributaries. In areas downstream of known ASGM activity, mercury concentrations in sediment, suspended solids, and fish within the Madre de Dios River were elevated relative to locations upstream of mining. Fish tissue mercury concentrations were observed at levels representing a public health threat, with greater than one-third of carnivorous fish exceeding the international health standard of 0.5 mg kg(-1). This study demonstrates that communities located hundreds of kilometers downstream of ASGM activity, including children and indigenous populations who may not be involved in mining, are at risk of dietary mercury exposure that exceed acceptable body burdens. This report represents the first systematic study of the region to aid policy decision-making related to ASGM activities in Peru.

  8. Mercury distribution and speciation in soils affected by historic mercury mining

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hojdová, Maria; Navrátil, Tomáš; Rohovec, Jan; Penížek, V.; Grygar, Tomáš

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 200, 1/4 (2009), s. 89-99 ISSN 0049-6979 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) KJB300130615 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516; CEZ:AV0Z40320502 Keywords : mercury speciation * thermo-desorption analysis * forest soil * contamination * mining * contamination (Czech Republic ) Subject RIV: DD - Geochemistry Impact factor: 1.676, year: 2009

  9. Perception of mercury contamination by Brazilian adolescents in a gold mining community: an ethnographic approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novais, Gabriel; Câmara, Volney de Magalhães

    2009-01-01

    This study used ethnographic methods to examine the perception of mercury contamination by adolescents in the mining community of Poconé, Mato Grosso, Brazil. In Phase I, 53 students aged 13 to 16 years in six schools presented theatrical sketches about community health risks to generate key terms for a pile sorting activity in Phase II. Mercury was reported by four of the 15 groups (26%). In Phase II, researchers conducted semi-structured interviews and pile sorts with 31 students to assess adolescent attitudes about mercury and to generate an ethnomedical model of mercury perception. The lack of consensus evident in the model reveals that while students view mercury as an overall threat, many of them do not understand how its presence can harm human health. Few adolescents felt confident about their knowledge (3%) or could accurately explain how it was used (9%), even though many of them had relatives working as miners (55%). Further analysis of pile sort data suggests that mercury may not belong in a 'typical risks' domain. The authors argue that ethnographic methods are a useful tool for public health research, and hope that these findings can contribute to health education interventions in the field.

  10. Industrial and natural sources of gaseous elemental mercury in the Almadén district (Spain): An updated report on this issue after the ceasing of mining and metallurgical activities in 2003 and major land reclamation works

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Higueras, Pablo; María Esbrí, José; Oyarzun, Roberto; Llanos, Willans; Martínez-Coronado, Alba

    2013-01-01

    Two events during the last decade had major environmental repercussions in Almadén town (Spain). First it was the ceasing of activities in the mercury mine and metallurgical facilities in 2003, and then the finalization of the restoration works on the main waste dump in 2008. The combination of both events brought about a dramatic drop in the emissions of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) to the atmosphere. Although no one would now call the Almadén area as ‘mercury-free’, the GEM levels have fallen beneath international reference safety levels for the first time in centuries. This has been a major breakthrough because in less than one decade the site went from GEM levels in the order of “tens of thousands” to mere “tens” nanogram per cubic meter. Although these figures are per se a remarkable achievement, they do not mark the end of the environmental concerns in the Almadén district. Two other sites remain as potential environmental hazards. (1) The Las Cuevas mercury storage complex, a partially restored ex-mining site where liquid mercury is being stored. The MERSADE Project (LIFE—European Union) has tested the Las Cuevas complex as a potential site for the installation of a future European prototype safe deposit of surplus mercury from industrial activities. Despite restoration works carried out in 2004, the Las Cuevas complex can still be regarded as hotspot of mercury contamination, with high concentrations above 800 μg g −1 Hg soil and 300 ng m −3 Hg gas . However, as predicted by air contamination modeling using the ISC-AERMOD software, GEM concentrations fade away in a short distance following the formation of a NW–SE oriented narrow plume extending for a few hundred meters from the complex perimeter. (2) Far more dangerous from the human health perspective is the Almadenejos area, hosting the small Almadenejos village, the so-called Cerco de Almadenejos (CDA; an old metallurgical precinct), and the mines of La Nueva Concepción, La

  11. MODELING MERCURY CONTROL WITH POWDERED ACTIVATED CARBON

    Science.gov (United States)

    The paper presents a mathematical model of total mercury removed from the flue gas at coal-fired plants equipped with powdered activated carbon (PAC) injection for Mercury control. The developed algorithms account for mercury removal by both existing equipment and an added PAC in...

  12. Mercury speciation on three European mining districts by XANES techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esbri, J. M.; Garcia-Noguero, E. M.; Guerrero, B.; Kocman, D.; Bernaus, A.; Gaona, X.; Higueras, P.; Alvarez, R.; Loredo, J.; Horvat, M.; Ávila, M.

    2009-04-01

    The mobility, bioavailability and toxicity of mercury in the environment depend on the chemical species in which is present in soil, sediments, water or air. In this work we used synchrotron radiation to determine mercury species in geological samples of three mercury mining districts: Almadén (Spain), Idria (Slovenia) and Asturias (Spain). The aim of this study was to find differences on mobility and bioavailability of mercury on three mining districts with different type of mineralization. For this porpoises we selected samples of ore, calcines, soils and stream sediments from the three sites, completely characterized by the Almadén School of Mines, Josef Stefan Institute of Ljubljana and Oviedo School of Mines. Speciation of mercury was carried out on Synchrotron Laboratories of Hamburg (HASYLAB) by XANES techniques. Spectra of pure compounds [HgCl2, HgSO4, HgO, CH3HgCl, Hg2Cl2 (calomel), HgSred (cinnabar), HgSblack (metacinnabar), Hg2NCl0.5(SO4)0.3(MoO4)0.1(CO3)0.1(H2O) (mosesite), Hg3S2Cl2 (corderoite), Hg3(SO4)O2 (schuetteite) y Hg2ClO (terlinguaite)] were obtained on transmittance mode. The number and type of the compounds required to reconstruct experimental spectra for each sample was obtained by PCA analysis and linear fitting of minimum quadratics of the pure compounds spectra. This offers a semiquantitative approach to the mineralogical constitution of each analyzed sample. The results put forward differences on the efficiency of roasting furnaces from the three studied sites, evidenced by the presence of metacinnabar on the less efficient (Almadén and Asturias) and absence on the most efficient (Idria). For the three studied sites, sulfide species (cinnabar and metacinnabar) were largely more abundant than soluble species (chlorides and sulfates). On the other hand, recent results on the mobility of both Hg and As on the target sites will be presented. These results correlate with the related chemical species found by XANES techniques.

  13. Human exposure to mercury in artisanal small-scale gold mining areas of Kedougou region, Senegal, as a function of occupational activity and fish consumption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niane, Birane; Guédron, Stéphane; Moritz, Robert; Cosio, Claudia; Ngom, Papa Malick; Deverajan, Naresh; Pfeifer, Hans Rudolf; Poté, John

    2015-05-01

    We investigated mercury (Hg) exposure of food web and humans in the region of Kedougou, Senegal, where Hg is used for gold amalgamation in artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM). For this purpose, total mercury (THg) concentration was determined in eight fish species and two shellfish species from Gambia River and in human hair from 111 volunteers of different age and sex, living in urban locations (Kedougou and Samekouta) or in ASGM areas (Tinkoto and Bantako). THg concentrations in fish samples range from 0.03 to 0.51 mg kg(-1) wet weight (ww) and 0.5 to 1.05 mg kg(-1) ww for shellfish. THg concentrations in fish are below the WHO guideline of 0.5 mg kg(-1) ww, whereas 100 % of shellfish are above this safety guideline. In the entire set of fish and shellfish samples, we documented a decrease of THg concentrations with increasing selenium to mercury (Se:Hg) ratio suggesting a protection of Se against Hg. However, local population consuming fish from the Gambia River in the two ASGM areas have higher THg concentrations (median = 1.45 and 1.5 mg kg(-1) at Bantako and Tinkoto) in hair than those from others localities (median = 0.42 and 0.32 mg kg(-1) at Kedougou town and Samekouta) who have diverse diets. At ASGM sites, about 30 % of the local population present Hg concentrations in hair exceeding 1 mg kg(-1), defined as the reference concentration of Hg in hair. We also evidence a higher exposure of women to Hg in the Tinkoto ASGM site due to the traditional distribution of daily tasks where women are more involved in the burning of amalgams. The discrepancy between the calculated moderate exposure through fish consumption and the high Hg concentrations measured in hair suggest that fish consumption is not the only source of Hg exposure and that further studies should focus on direct exposure to elemental Hg of population living at ASGM sites.

  14. Mining activities at Neyveli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boopathy, P.V.; Rathinavel, R.

    1993-01-01

    Mining activities at lignite areas around Neyveli are described. Measures taken to safeguard the environment from despoliation of land, air pollution, noise pollution and effluents are described. (M.G.B.)

  15. Pollution by Arsenic, Mercury and other Heavy Metals in Sunchulli mining district of Apolobamba (Bolivia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terán Mita, Tania; Faz Cano, Angel; Muñoz, Maria Angeles; Millán Gómez, Rocio; Chincheros Paniagua, Jaime

    2010-05-01

    In Bolivia, metal mining activities since historical times have been one of the most important sources of environmental pollution. This is the case of the National Area of Apolobamba Integrated Management (ANMIN of Apolobamba) in La Paz, Bolivia, where intense gold mining activities have been carried out from former times to the present, with very little gold extraction and very primitive mineral processing technology; in fact, mercury is still being used in the amalgam processes of the gold concentration, which is burned outdoors to recover the gold. Sunchullí is a representative mining district in ANMIN of Apolobamba where mining activity is mainly gold extraction and its water effluents go to the Amazonian basin; in this mining district the productivity of extracted mineral is very low but the processes can result in heavy-metal contamination of the air, water, soils and plants. Due to its high toxicity, the contamination by arsenic and mercury create the most critical environmental problems. In addition, some other heavy metals may also be present such as lead, copper, zinc and cadmium. These heavy metals could be incorporated in the trophic chain, through the flora and the fauna, in their bio-available and soluble forms. Inhabitants of this area consume foodcrops, fish from lakes and rivers and use the waters for the livestock, domestic use, and irrigation. The aim of this work was to evaluate the heavy metals pollution by gold mining activities in Sunchullí area. In Sunchullí two representative zones were distinguished and sampled. Zone near the mining operation site was considered as affected by mineral extraction processes, while far away zones represented the non affected ones by the mining operation. In each zone, 3 plots were established; in each plot, 3 soil sampling points were selected in a random manner and analysed separately. In each sampling point, two samples were taken, one at the surface, from 0-5 cm depth (topsoil), and the other between 5

  16. Mercury volatilisation and phytoextraction from base-metal mine tailings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Fabio N; Anderson, Chris W N; Stewart, Robert B; Robinson, Brett H

    2005-07-01

    Experiments were carried out in plant growth chambers and in the field to investigate plant-mercury accumulation and volatilisation in the presence of thiosulphate (S2O3)-containing solutions. Brassica juncea (Indian mustard) plants grown in Hg-contaminated Tui mine tailings (New Zealand) were enclosed in gastight volatilisation chambers to investigate the effect of ammonium thiosulphate ([NH4]2 S2O3) on the plant-Hg volatilisation process. Application of (NH4)2 S2O3 to substrates increased up to 6 times the Hg concentration in shoots and roots of B. juncea relative to controls. Volatilisation rates were significantly higher in plants irrigated only with water (control) when compared to plants treated with (NH4)2 S2O3. Volatilisation from barren pots (without plants) indicated that Hg in tailings is subject to biological and photochemical reactions. Addition of sodium thiosulphate (Na2S2O3) at 5 g/kg of substrate to B. juncea plants grown at the Tui mine site confirmed the plant growth chambers studies showing the effectiveness of thio-solutions at enhancing shoot Hg concentrations. Mercury extraction from the field plots yielded a maximum value of 25 g/ha. Mass balance studies revealed that volatilisation is a dominant pathway for Hg removal from the Tui mine site. A preliminary assessment of the risks of volatilisation indicated that enhanced Hg emissions by plants would not harm the local population and the regional environment.

  17. Women, mercury and artisanal gold mining : Risk communication and mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinton, J. J.; Veiga, M. M.; Beinhoff, C.

    2003-05-01

    Artisanal miners employ rudimentary techniques for minéral extraction and often operate under hazardous, labour intensive, highly disorganized and illegal conditions. Gold is the main mineral extracted by artisanal miners, and the ecological and human health impacts resulting from mercury (Hg) use in gold extraction warrant special consideration. More than 30% of world's 13 million artisanal miners are women and, as they are often perceived to be less suited for labour intensive mining methods, the majority of women work in the processing aspect of artisanal mining, including amalgamation with Hg. As women are also predominantly responsible for food preparation, they are in an excellent position to respond to health risks associated with consumption of Hg-contaminated foods in impacted areas. In addition to their influence on consumption habits, women in artisanal mining communities may be in a position to effect positive change with respect to the technologies employed. Thus, gender sensitive approaches are necessary to reduce exposure risks to women and their families, promote clean technologies and support the development of stronger, healthier artisanal mining communities. This paper describes the roles of women in artisanal gold mining, highlights their importance in reducing the Hg exposure in these communities, and provides insight into how risks from Hg pollution can effectively be communicated and mitigated.

  18. Mercury volatilisation and phytoextraction from base-metal mine tailings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moreno, Fabio N.; Anderson, Chris W.N.; Stewart, Robert B.; Robinson, Brett H.

    2005-01-01

    Experiments were carried out in plant growth chambers and in the field to investigate plant-mercury accumulation and volatilisation in the presence of thiosulphate (S 2 O 3 )-containing solutions. Brassica juncea (Indian mustard) plants grown in Hg-contaminated Tui mine tailings (New Zealand) were enclosed in gastight volatilisation chambers to investigate the effect of ammonium thiosulphate ([NH 4 ] 2 S 2 O 3 ) on the plant-Hg volatilisation process. Application of (NH 4 ) 2 S 2 O 3 to substrates increased up to 6 times the Hg concentration in shoots and roots of B. juncea relative to controls. Volatilisation rates were significantly higher in plants irrigated only with water (control) when compared to plants treated with (NH 4 ) 2 S 2 O 3 . Volatilisation from barren pots (without plants) indicated that Hg in tailings is subject to biological and photochemical reactions. Addition of sodium thiosulphate (Na 2 S 2 O 3 ) at 5 g/kg of substrate to B. juncea plants grown at the Tui mine site confirmed the plant growth chambers studies showing the effectiveness of thio-solutions at enhancing shoot Hg concentrations. Mercury extraction from the field plots yielded a maximum value of 25 g/ha. Mass balance studies revealed that volatilisation is a dominant pathway for Hg removal from the Tui mine site. A preliminary assessment of the risks of volatilisation indicated that enhanced Hg emissions by plants would not harm the local population and the regional environment. - Mass balance studies indicated that volatilisation was a dominant pathway for mercury removal

  19. Improving awareness of mercury pollution in small-scale gold mining communities: challenges and ways forward in rural Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilson, Gavin; Hilson, Christopher J; Pardie, Sandra

    2007-02-01

    This paper critiques the approach taken by the Ghanaian Government to address mercury pollution in the artisanal and small-scale gold mining sector. Unmonitored releases of mercury-used in the gold-amalgamation process-have caused numerous environmental complications throughout rural Ghana. Certain policy, technological and educational initiatives taken to address the mounting problem, however, have proved marginally effective at best, having been designed and implemented without careful analysis of mine community dynamics, the organization of activities, operators' needs and local geological conditions. Marked improvements can only be achieved in this area through increased government-initiated dialogue with the now-ostracized illegal galamsey mining community; introducing simple, cost-effective techniques for the reduction of mercury emissions; and effecting government-sponsored participatory training exercises as mediums for communicating information about appropriate technologies and the environment.

  20. Environmental contamination of mercury from Hg-mining areas in Wuchuan, northeastern Guizhou, China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qiu Guangle [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry, Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 73 Guanshui Road, Guiyang, Guizhou 550002 (China); Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039 (China); Feng Xinbin [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry, Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 73 Guanshui Road, Guiyang, Guizhou 550002 (China)]. E-mail: fengxinbin@vip.skleg.cn; Wang Shaofeng [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry, Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 73 Guanshui Road, Guiyang, Guizhou 550002 (China); Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039 (China); Shang Lihai [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry, Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 73 Guanshui Road, Guiyang, Guizhou 550002 (China); Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039 (China)

    2006-08-15

    Total Hg and methyl-Hg were evaluated in mine wastes, soils, water, and vegetations from the Wuchuan Hg-mining areas, Guizhou, China. Mine wastes contain high total Hg concentrations, ranging from 79 to 710 {mu}g g{sup -1}, and methyl-Hg from 0.32 to 3.9 ng g{sup -1}. Total Hg in soil samples range from 0.33 to 320 {mu}g g{sup -1} and methyl-Hg from 0.69 to 20 ng g{sup -1}. Vegetations present a high average total Hg concentration of 260 ng g{sup -1}, which greatly exceeds the maximum Hg concentration of 20 ng g{sup -1} recommended by the Chinese National Standard Agency for food sources. The rice samples contain elevated methyl-Hg concentrations, ranging from 4.2 to 18 ng g{sup -1}. Stream water collected from Hg-mining areas is also contaminated, containing Hg as high as 360 ng l{sup -1}, and methyl-Hg reaches up to 5.7 ng l{sup -1}. Data indicate heavy Hg-contaminations and significant conversion of methyl-Hg in the study areas. - Mercury mining activities in Wuchun, Guizhou, China have resulted in seriously mercury contamination to the local environment.

  1. Environmental contamination of mercury from Hg-mining areas in Wuchuan, northeastern Guizhou, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qiu Guangle; Feng Xinbin; Wang Shaofeng; Shang Lihai

    2006-01-01

    Total Hg and methyl-Hg were evaluated in mine wastes, soils, water, and vegetations from the Wuchuan Hg-mining areas, Guizhou, China. Mine wastes contain high total Hg concentrations, ranging from 79 to 710 μg g -1 , and methyl-Hg from 0.32 to 3.9 ng g -1 . Total Hg in soil samples range from 0.33 to 320 μg g -1 and methyl-Hg from 0.69 to 20 ng g -1 . Vegetations present a high average total Hg concentration of 260 ng g -1 , which greatly exceeds the maximum Hg concentration of 20 ng g -1 recommended by the Chinese National Standard Agency for food sources. The rice samples contain elevated methyl-Hg concentrations, ranging from 4.2 to 18 ng g -1 . Stream water collected from Hg-mining areas is also contaminated, containing Hg as high as 360 ng l -1 , and methyl-Hg reaches up to 5.7 ng l -1 . Data indicate heavy Hg-contaminations and significant conversion of methyl-Hg in the study areas. - Mercury mining activities in Wuchun, Guizhou, China have resulted in seriously mercury contamination to the local environment

  2. A preliminary study on health effects in villagers exposed to mercury in a small-scale artisanal gold mining area in Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bose-O'Reilly, Stephan; Schierl, Rudolf; Nowak, Dennis; Siebert, Uwe; William, Jossep Frederick; Owi, Fradico Teorgi; Ir, Yuyun Ismawati

    2016-08-01

    Cisitu is a small-scale gold mining village in Indonesia. Mercury (Hg) is used to extract gold from ore, heavily polluting air, soil, fish and rice paddy fields with Hg. Rice in Cisitu is burdened with mercury. The main staple food of the inhabitants of Cisitu is this polluted rice. Villagers were concerned that the severe diseases they observed in the community might be related to their mining activities, including high mercury exposure. Case report of the medical examinations and the mercury levels in urine and hair of 18 people with neurological symptoms. Typical signs and symptoms of chronic mercury intoxication were found (excessive salivation, sleep disturbances, tremor, ataxia, dysdiadochokinesia, pathological coordination tests, gray to bluish discoloration of the oral cavity and proteinuria). Mercury levels in urine were increased in eight patients (>7µg Hg/L urine). All 18 people had increased hair levels (>1µg Hg/g hair). 15 patients exhibited several, and sometimes numerous, symptoms in addition to having moderately to highly elevated levels of mercury in their specimens. These patients were classified as intoxicated. The situation in Cisitu is special, with rice paddy fields being irrigated with mercury-contaminated water and villagers consuming only local food, especially mercury-contaminated rice. Severe neurological symptoms and increased levels of mercury in urine and hair support are possibly caused by exposure to inorganic mercury in air, and the consumption of mercury-contaminated fish and rice. The mercury exposure needs to be reduced and treatment provided. Further research is needed to test the hypothesis that mercury-contaminated rice from small-scale gold mining areas might cause mercury intoxication. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Mercury contamination in soil, tailing and plants on agricultural fields near closed gold mine in Buru Island, Maluku

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reginawanti Hindersah

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Agricultural productivity in Buru Island, Maluku is threatened by tailings which are generated from formerly gold mine in Botak Mountain in Wamsait Village. Gold that extracted by using mercury was carried out in mining area as well agricultural field.  High content of mercury in tailings and agricultural field pose a serious problem of food production and quality; and further endangers human health. The purpose of this research was to determine the contaminant level of mercury in tailing, soil and its accumulation in edible part of some food crops. Soil, tailing and plant samples for Hg testing were taken by purposive method based on mining activities in Waelata, Waeapo and Namlea sub district. Six soil samples had been analyzed for their chemical properties. Total mercury levels in tailings and plants were measured by Atomic Adsorption Spectrophotometer. This study showed that agricultural field where tailings were deposited contained Hg above the threshold but agricultural area which is far from hot spot did not. Most edible parts of food crops accumulated mercury more than Indonesian threshold for mercury content in food. This evidence explained that tailings deposited on the surface of agricultural field had an impact on soil quality and crop quality. Tailing accumulated on soil will decreased soil quality since naturally soil fertility in agricultural field in Buru is low.

  4. Evaluation of mercury levels in hair of children resident in artisanal gold mining area in the city of Chapada de Natividade-Tocantins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mendes, Seyna Ueno R., E-mail: seynaueno@gmail.com [Universidade Federal do Tocantins (UFTO), Palmas,TO (Brazil). Coordenação de Medicina; Vasconcellos, Marina B.A.; Catharino, Marília Gabriela M., E-mail: mbvascon@ipen.br [Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares (CRPQ/IPEN/CNEN-SP), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil). Centro do Reator de Pesquisa; Quinaglia, Gilson A.; Held, Barbara, E-mail: gquinaglia@sp.gov.br [Companhia Ambiental do Estado de São Paulo (CETESB), São Paulo, SP (Brazil). Setor de Análises Toxicológicas

    2017-07-01

    The objective of the work is to evaluate the mercury exposure of children living in an artisanal gold mining area and in a control area, without mining. A cross-sectional study was conducted with children living in the municipalities of Chapada de Natividade and Porto Nacional, in the State of Tocantins, where hair samples were collected for laboratorial analysis of mercury concentrations, comparing between municipalities, gender, monthly fish consumption, profession of parents and the presence of amalgam in dental restorations. The hair samples were analyzed by the methods of neutron activation analysis and also by means of the DMA (Direct Mercury Analyzer) equipment, in the last case being a partnership with CETESB. There was no evidence of mercury-related diseases in the studied children. The mean concentration of mercury in children in Chapada de Natividade was significantly higher than in Porto Nacional. Children exposed to artisanal gold mining areas have higher concentrations of mercury than children living in non- artisanal gold mining areas. There was no significant relationship between mercury concentrations and gender, monthly fish consumption, parental profession and amalgam presence in dental restorations. The results suggest that the children living in an area exposed to mining experience greater environmental exposure to mercury, regardless of their eating habits or gender. (author)

  5. Evaluation of mercury levels in hair of children resident in artisanal gold mining area in the city of Chapada de Natividade-Tocantins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mendes, Seyna Ueno R.; Vasconcellos, Marina B.A.; Catharino, Marília Gabriela M.; Quinaglia, Gilson A.; Held, Barbara

    2017-01-01

    The objective of the work is to evaluate the mercury exposure of children living in an artisanal gold mining area and in a control area, without mining. A cross-sectional study was conducted with children living in the municipalities of Chapada de Natividade and Porto Nacional, in the State of Tocantins, where hair samples were collected for laboratorial analysis of mercury concentrations, comparing between municipalities, gender, monthly fish consumption, profession of parents and the presence of amalgam in dental restorations. The hair samples were analyzed by the methods of neutron activation analysis and also by means of the DMA (Direct Mercury Analyzer) equipment, in the last case being a partnership with CETESB. There was no evidence of mercury-related diseases in the studied children. The mean concentration of mercury in children in Chapada de Natividade was significantly higher than in Porto Nacional. Children exposed to artisanal gold mining areas have higher concentrations of mercury than children living in non- artisanal gold mining areas. There was no significant relationship between mercury concentrations and gender, monthly fish consumption, parental profession and amalgam presence in dental restorations. The results suggest that the children living in an area exposed to mining experience greater environmental exposure to mercury, regardless of their eating habits or gender. (author)

  6. Methods to reduce mercury pollution in small gold mining operations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pantoja-Timarán, F.

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available The use of mercury for gold beneficiation is still a current practice in small mining operations, mainly in underdeveloped countries, due to the low investment required and necessity of easy to operate systems. But the lack of basic protections makes unavoidable the high pollution of water streams, soils, and in fact, human bodies. Some improvements have been done at site like that related to the removal of the mercury from the amalgam, that usually was done in the open air and now have been changed to the utilization of artisan iron retorts which considerably reduce the emissions of mercury vapors to the atmosphere, but there are still high losses of mercury into the waste solids or tailings coming from the amalgamation process (nearly most of the total weight of the ore treated. In order to reduce the mercury losses into the tailings from the process, this research work has been based in the use of cheap systems, available to the isolated miners, to proof that it is feasible to get an important reduction of the losses and the pollution. The procedure has been accomplished by means of washing the ores with alkaline or detergent agents, together with the use of activated mercury purified by electrowinning in a simple device, easily manufactured in site by the own workers. It is also proven herewith that controlling the time of amalgamation and the total amount of mercury used could reduce the total pollution, and in addition, the gold recovery would be improved. This investigation reports the possibility of a reduction of mercury losses down to 2.4 g per 100 g of gold produced (case of rich ores like La Bruja, with gold recovery up to 94 %; and 8,6 g per 100 g of gold produced (from ores with average grades like La Gruesa, and gold recoveries in the range of 92 %. All that is about 20 to 100 times lower than data reported in current bibliography. The introduction of a previous step of the ore concentration in shaking tables, decreases the total

  7. The distribution of mercury around the small-scale gold mining area along the Cikaniki river, Bogor, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomiyasu, Takashi; Kono, Yuriko; Kodamatani, Hitoshi; Hidayati, Nuril; Rahajoe, Joeni Setijo

    2013-08-01

    The distribution of mercury in the soil, sediment and river water around the artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) area along the Cikaniki River, West Java, Indonesia, was investigated. The total mercury concentration (T-Hg) in the forest soil ranged from 0.11 to 7.0mgkg(-1), and the highest value was observed at the ASGM village. In the vertical T-Hg profile around the villages, the highest value was observed at the soil surface, and the concentration decreased with depth. This result suggested that the mercury released by mining activity was dispersed through the atmosphere and deposited on the surface. The total organic carbon content (TOC) showed a similar vertical profile as the T-Hg, and a linear relationship was found between T-Hg and TOC. Mercury deposited on the surface can be absorbed by organic matter. The slope of the line was larger near the ASGM village, implying a higher rate of deposition of mercury. The T-Hg in the sediment ranged from 10 to 70mgkg(-1), decreasing gradually toward the lower reaches of the river. Mining waste can be transported with the river flow and deposited along the river. The distribution of the mining waste can be determined using the mineralogical composition measured by X-ray fluorescence spectrometry. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Environmental and human exposure assessment monitoring of communities near an abandoned mercury mine in the Philippines: a toxic legacy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maramba, Nelia P C; Reyes, Jose Paciano; Francisco-Rivera, Ana Trinidad; Panganiban, Lynn Crisanta R; Dioquino, Carissa; Dando, Nerissa; Timbang, Rene; Akagi, Hirokatsu; Castillo, Ma Teresa; Quitoriano, Carmela; Afuang, Maredith; Matsuyama, Akito; Eguchi, Tomomi; Fuchigami, Youko

    2006-10-01

    Abandoned mines are an important global concern and continue to pose real or potential threats to human safety and health including environmental damage/s. Very few countries had government mine regulation and reclamation policies until the latter part of the century where legal, financial and technical procedures were required for existing mining operations. Major reasons for mine closure may be mainly due to poor economies of the commodity making mining unprofitable, technical difficulties and national security. If the mine is abandoned, more often than not it is the government that shoulders the burden of clean-up, monitoring and remediation. The topic of abandoned mines is complex because of the associated financial and legal liability implications. Abandoned mercury mines have been identified as one of the major concerns because of their significant long-term environmental problems. Primary mercury production is still ongoing in Spain, Kyrgzystan, China, Algeria, Russia and Slovakia while world production declined substantially in the late 1980s. In the Philippines, the mercury mine located southeast of Manila was in operation from 1955 to 1976, before ceasing operation because of the decline in world market price for the commodity. During this time, annual production of mercury was estimated to be about 140,000 kg of mercury yearly. Approximately 2,000,000 t of mine-waste calcines (retorted ore) were produced during mining and roughly 1,000,000 t of these calcines were dumped into nearby Honda Bay to construct a jetty to facilitate mine operations where about 2000 people reside in the nearby three barangays. In October, 1994 the Department of Health received a request from the Provincial Health Office for technical assistance relative to the investigation of increasing complaints of unusual symptoms (e.g. miscarriages, tooth loss, muscle weakness, paralysis, anemia, tremors, etc.) among residents of three barangays. Initial health reports revealed significant

  9. Mercury Pollution Studies of Some Rivers Draining the Bibiani-Anwiaso-Bekwai Mining Community of South Western Ghana

    OpenAIRE

    V.K. Nartey; L.K. Doamekpor; S. Sarpong-Kumankuma; T. Akabzaa; F.K. Nyame; J.K. Kutor; D. Adotey

    2011-01-01

    The project assessed the extent of mercury pollution of some rivers that drain the Bibiani-Anwiaso- Bekwai district which is a typical mining community in the south western part of Ghana. In the study, surfacewater and sediment samples were collected from seven streams that drain this mining community and analyzed for total mercury, organic mercury and elemental mercury. Mercury concentrations of non-filtered water was determined using the ICP-OES after reduction with stannous chloride (SnCl2...

  10. Mercury in breast milk - a health hazard for infants in gold mining areas?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bose-O'Reilly, Stephan; Lettmeier, Beate; Roider, Gabriele; Siebert, Uwe; Drasch, Gustav

    2008-10-01

    Breast-feeding can be a source of mercury exposure for infants. The main concern up to now is methyl-mercury exposure of women at child-bearing age. Certain fish species have high levels of methyl-mercury leading to consumer's advisory guidelines in regard of fish consumption to protect infants from mercury exposure passing through breast milk. Little is known about the transfer of inorganic mercury passing through breast milk to infants. Epidemiological studies showed negative health effects of inorganic mercury in gold mining areas. Small-scale gold miners use mercury to extract the gold from the ore. Environmental and health assessments of gold mining areas in Indonesia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe showed a high exposure with inorganic mercury in these gold mining areas, and a negative health impact of the exposure to the miners and the communities. This paper reports about the analysis and the results of 46 breast milk samples collected from mercury-exposed mothers. The median level of 1.87mug/l is fairly high compared to other results from literature. Some breast milk samples showed very high levels of mercury (up to 149mug/l). Fourteen of the 46 breast milk samples exceed 4mug/l which is considered to be a "high" level. US EPA recommends a "Reference Dose" of 0.3mug inorganic mercury/kg body weight/day [United States Environmental Protection Agency, 1997. Volume V: Health Effects of Mercury and Mercury Compounds. Study Report EPA-452/R-97-007: US EPA]. Twenty-two of the 46 children from these gold mining areas had a higher calculated total mercury uptake. The highest calculated daily mercury uptake of 127mug exceeds by far the recommended maximum uptake of inorganic mercury. Further systematic research of mercury in breast milk from small-scale gold mining areas is needed to increase the knowledge about the bio-transfer of mercury from mercury vapour-exposed mothers passing through breast milk to the breast-fed infant.

  11. High activity carbon sorbents for mercury capture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stavropoulos George G.

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available High efficiency activated carbons have been prepared for removing mercury from gas streams. Starting materials used were petroleum coke, lignite, charcoal and olive seed waste, and were chemically activated with KOH. Produced adsorbents were primarily characterized for their porosity by N2 adsorption at 77 K. Their mercury retention capacity was characterized based on the breakthrough curves. Compared with typical commercial carbons, they have exhibited considerably enhanced mercury adsorption capacity. An attempt has been made to correlate mercury entrapment and pore structure. It has been shown that physical surface area is increased during activation in contrast to the mercury adsorption capacity that initially increases and tends to decrease at latter stages. Desorption of active sites may be responsible for this behavior.

  12. Distribution and assessment of residual mercury from gold mining in Changbai Mountain Range Northeastern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, D.; Wang, N.; Ai, J. C.; Zhang, G.; Liu, X. J.

    2016-08-01

    Gold mining was first initiated in Jiapigou area, Huadian city of Northeastern China about 200 years ago. Before 2006, the mercury amalgamation technique was used in the gold mining process, which led to severe mercury contamination. The aim of this paper is to explore the influences of residual mercury on the environment media after eliminating the amalgamation process to extract gold. The mercury concentrations of the atmosphere and the soil were determined in autumn of 2011 and spring of 2012. The soil environmental quality was assessed by the index of geoaccumulation. The results indicated that the maximum value of gaseous mercury was 25ng•m-3 in autumn and 19.5ng•m-3 in spring; the maximum value of mercury in the soil was 2.06mg•kg-1 in autumn and 2.51mg•kg-1in spring. It can be seen that the peak concentrations of the gaseous mercury happened at the gold mine area and tailings, while the peak mercury concentrations in the soil were located at the places near the mining sites and the residential area in the valley. Furthermore, the regression analysis of the total mercury contents between the atmosphere and the soil showed a significant correlation, which indicated that there was certain circulation of the mercury between the regional atmosphere and soil. In general, after the elimination of the amalgamation technique in gold extraction, the distance to the mercury source, the special conditions of hilly weather and landforms and the mercury exchange flux are the main factors of mercury contamination.

  13. Mercury and Cyanide Contaminations in Gold Mine Environment and Possible Solution of Cleaning Up by Using Phytoextraction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    NURIL HIDAYATI

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Water contamination with heavy metals, mainly mercury and cyanide (CN due to small scale of public mines and large scale of industrial mines have been in concern to residents around the area. Surveys of heavy metal contamination in aquatic environments, such as rivers and paddy fields over two gold mine areas in West Jawa were conducted and possible solution of using indigenous plants for phytoremediation was studied. The results showed that most of the rivers and other aquatic environments were affected by gold mine activities. Rivers, ponds, and paddy fields around illegal public mines were mostly contaminated by mercury in considerably high levels, such as paddy fields in two locations (Nunggul and Leuwijamang, Pongkor were contaminated up to 22.68 and 7.73 ppm of Hg, respectively. Whereas rivers located around large scale industrial mines were contaminated by CN. Possible solution of cleaning up by using green technology of phytoremediation was examined. Some plant species grew in the contaminated sites showed high tolerance and potentially effective in accumulating cyanide or mercury in their roots and above ground portions. Lindernia crustacea (L. F.M., Digitaria radicosa (Presl Miq, Paspalum conjugatum, Cyperus kyllingia accumulated 89.13, 50.93, 1.78, and 0.77 ppm of Hg, respectively. Whereas, Paspalum conjugatum, Cyperus kyllingia accumulated 16.52 and 33. 16 ppm of CN respectively.

  14. Mercury dispersion in soils of an abandoned lead-zinc-silver mine, San Quintín (Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esbrí, José Maria; Martín-Crespo, T.; Gómez-Ortiz, D.; Monescillo, C. I.; Lorenzo, S.; Higueras, P.

    2010-05-01

    The mine considered on this work, namely San Quintín, is a filonian field with hydrothermal ores exploited during almost fifty years (1887-1934), producing 550.000Tm of galena, 550Tm of silver and 5.000 of sphalerite. Some rewashing works of tailings muds was achieved in recent times (1973-1985), including flotation tests of cinnabar ore from Almadén mines. The main problems remaining on the site are an active acid mine drainage (with pH ~ 2) and heavy metal dispersion on soils including gaseous mercury emissions. We present here results of a survey including soils sampling with mercury analysis and other pedological parameters, as well as determinations of mercury inmission in the atmosphere, using a common sampling grid. Analysis of soils samples has been carried out using an atomic absorption spectrometer AMA254, while air determinations were made by the same technique, using a Lumex RA-915+. The maps have been obtained by means of SURFER 8 software, as well as by ArcGIS software, and puts forward dispersion of mercury from cinnabar ore dump (108 ?g×g-1) to nearby soils (0.3 ?g×g-1 at 700 m of distance). The dispersion of mercury vapor exceed WHO level for chronic exposure (200 ng×m-3) in a small area (250 meters from cinnabar dump).

  15. [Spatial distribution and ecological significance of heavy metals in soils from Chatian mercury mining deposit, western Hunan province].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Hong-Fei; Li, Yong-Hu; Ji, Yan-Fang; Yang, Lin-Sheng; Wang, Wu-Yi

    2009-04-15

    Ores, waste tailings and slag, together with three typical soil profiles (natural soil profiles far from mine entrance and near mine entrance, soil profile under slag) in Chatian mercury mining deposit (CMD), western Hunan province were sampled and their concentrations of mercury (Hg), arsenic (As), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), zinc (Zn) were determined by HG-ICP-AES and ICP-MS. Enrichment factor and correlation analysis were taken to investigate the origins, distribution and migration of Hg, as well as other heavy metals in the CMD. The results show that Hg is enriched in the bottom of the soil profile far from mine entrance but accumulated in the surface of soil profiles near mine entrance and under slag. The soil profiles near mine entrance and under slag are both contaminated by Hg, while the latter is contaminated more heavily. In the soil profile under slag, Hg concentration in the surface soil, Hg average concentration in the total profile, and the leaching depth of soil Hg are 640 microg x g(-1), (76.74 +/- 171.71) microg x g(-1), and more than 100 cm, respectively; while 6.5 microg x g(-1), (2.74 +/- 1.90) microg x g(-1), and 40 cm, respectively, are found in the soil profile near mine entrance. Soil in the mercury mine area is also polluted by Cd, As, Pb, Zn besides metallogenic element Hg, among which Cd pollution is relatively heavier than others. The mobility of the studied heavy metals in soil follows the order as Hg > Cd > As > Zn approximately equal to Pb. The leaching depth of the heavy metals is influenced by total concentration in the surface soil and soil physico-chemical parameters. The origins, distribution and migration of heavy metals in soil profile in the mining area are related to primary geological environment, and strongly influenced by human mining activities.

  16. Oral bioaccessibility and human exposure to anthropogenic and geogenic mercury in urban, industrial and mining areas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodrigues, S.M.; Coelho, C.; Cruz, N.; Monteiro, R.J.R.; Henriques, B.; Duarte, A.C.; Romkens, P.F.A.M.; Pereira, E.

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to characterize the link between bioaccessibility and fractionation of mercury (Hg) in soils and to provide insight into human exposure to Hg due to inhalation of airborne soil particles and hand-to-mouth ingestion of Hg-bearing soil. Mercury in soils from mining,

  17. The Mercury Problem in Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esdaile, Louisa J; Chalker, Justin M

    2018-05-11

    Mercury-dependent artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is the largest source of mercury pollution on Earth. In this practice, elemental mercury is used to extract gold from ore as an amalgam. The amalgam is typically isolated by hand and then heated-often with a torch or over a stove-to distill the mercury and isolate the gold. Mercury release from tailings and vaporized mercury exceed 1000 tonnes each year from ASGM. The health effects on the miners are dire, with inhaled mercury leading to neurological damage and other health issues. The communities near these mines are also affected due to mercury contamination of water and soil and subsequent accumulation in food staples, such as fish-a major source of dietary protein in many ASGM regions. The risks to children are also substantial, with mercury emissions from ASGM resulting in both physical and mental disabilities and compromised development. Between 10 and 19 million people use mercury to mine for gold in more than 70 countries, making mercury pollution from ASGM a global issue. With the Minamata Convention on Mercury entering force this year, there is political motivation to help overcome the problem of mercury in ASGM. In this effort, chemists can play a central role. Here, the problem of mercury in ASGM is reviewed with a discussion on how the chemistry community can contribute solutions. Introducing portable and low-cost mercury sensors, inexpensive and scalable remediation technologies, novel methods to prevent mercury uptake in fish and food crops, and efficient and easy-to-use mercury-free mining techniques are all ways in which the chemistry community can help. To meet these challenges, it is critical that new technologies or techniques are low-cost and adaptable to the remote and under-resourced areas in which ASGM is most common. The problem of mercury pollution in ASGM is inherently a chemistry problem. We therefore encourage the chemistry community to consider and address this issue that

  18. Environmental assessment of mining industry solid pollution in the mercurial district of Azzaba, northeast Algeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seklaoui, M'hamed; Boutaleb, Abdelhak; Benali, Hanafi; Alligui, Fadila; Prochaska, Walter

    2016-11-01

    To date, there have been few detailed studies regarding the impact of mining and metallogenic activities on solid fractions in the Azzaba mercurial district (northeast Algeria) despite its importance and global similarity with large Hg mines. To assess the degree, distribution, and sources of pollution, a physical inventory of apparent pollution was developed, and several samples of mining waste, process waste, sediment, and soil were collected on regional and local scales to determine the concentration of Hg and other metals according to their existing mineralogical association. Several physico-chemical parameters that are known to influence the pollution distribution are realized. The extremely high concentrations of all metals exceed all norms and predominantly characterize the metallurgic and mining areas; the metal concentrations significantly decrease at significant low distances from these sources. The geo-accumulation index, which is the most realistic assessment method, demonstrates that soils and sediments near waste dumps and abandoned Hg mines are extremely polluted by all analyzed metals. The pollution by these metals decreases significantly with distance, which indicates a limited dispersion. The results of a clustering analysis and an integrated pollution index suggest that waste dumps, which are composed of calcine and condensation wastes, are the main source of pollution. Correlations and principal component analysis reveal the important role of hosting carbonate rocks in limiting pollution and differentiating calcine wastes from condensation waste, which has an extremely high Hg concentration (˃1 %).

  19. Mercury biogeochemistry in the Idrija River, Slovenia, from above the mine into the Gulf of Trieste

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hines, M.E.; Horvat, M.; Faganeli, J.; Bonzongo, J.-C.J.; Barkay, T.; Major, E.B.; Scott, K.J.; Bailey, E.A.; Warwick, J.J.; Lyons, W.B.

    2000-01-01

    The Idrija Mine is the second largest Hg mine in the world which operated for 500 years. Mercury (Hg)-laden tailings still line the banks, and the system is a threat to the Idrija River and water bodies downstream including the Soca/Isonzo River and the Gulf of Trieste in the northern Adriatic Sea. A multidisciplinary study was conducted in June 1998 on water samples collected throughout the Idrija and Soca River systems and waters and sediments in the Gulf. Total Hg in the Idrija River increased >20-fold downstream of the mine from 60 ng liter-1 with methyl mercury (MeHg) accounting for ~0.5%. Concentrations increased again downstream and into the estuary with MeHg accounting for nearly 1.5% of the total. While bacteria upstream of the mine did not contain mercury detoxification genes (mer), such genes were detected in bacteria collected downstream. Benthic macroinvertebrate diversity decreased downstream of the mine. Gulf waters near the river mouth contained up to 65 ng liter-1 total Hg with ~0.05 ng liter-1 MeHg. Gulf sediments near the river mouth contained 40 ??g g-1 total Hg with MeHg concentrations of about 3 ng g-1. Hg in sediment pore waters varied between 1 and 8 ng liter-1, with MeHg accounting for up to 85%. Hg methylation and MeHg demethylation were active in Gulf sediments with highest activities near the surface. MeHg was degraded by an oxidative pathway with >97% C released from MeHg as CO2. Hg methylation depth profiles resembled profiles of dissolved MeHg. Hg-laden waters still strongly impact the riverine, estuarine, and marine systems. Macroinvertebrates and bacteria in the Idrija River responded to Hg stress, and high Hg levels persist into the Gulf. Increases in total Hg and MeHg in the estuary demonstrate the remobilization of Hg, presumably as HgS dissolution and recycling. Gulf sediments actively produce MeHg, which enters bottom waters and presumably the marine food chain. (C) 2000 Academic Press.

  20. [Environment spatial distribution of mercury pollution in Songhua River upstream gold mining areas].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Ting-Ting; Wang, Ning; Zhang, Gang; Zhao, Dan-Dan

    2010-09-01

    Using Zeeman mercury spectrometer RA915+ monitoring the total gaseous mercury concentration were collected from gold mining area in Huadian, in the upper reaches of the Songhua River, during summer and autumn of 2008, where we simultaneously collected samples of air, water, sediment and soil. The research is focused on analyzing of the spatial and temporal distribution characteristics of atmospheric mercury pollution and the correlation with other environmental factors. The results show that: the concentration of atmospheric mercury in summer is higher than that in autumn and in the evening is higher than at noon, and it present a gradual decay with the distance to the gold mining area as the center point increasing. The distribution rule of mercury pollution of environmental factors in the gold mining area is: in sediment > in soil > in plant > in water, the characteristics of mercury pollution distribution in plant is: root > stem and leaf, and the content of mercury in plant in autumn is commonly higher than that in summer. This is thought due to the accumulation of pollutant element from soil during the growth of plant. The atmospheric mercury has a significant correlation with the root of plant, respectively 0.83 in summer and 0.97 in autumn.

  1. Natural and mining-related mercury in an orogenic greywacke terrane, South Island, New Zealand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holley, E.A.; Craw, D.; Kim, J.P.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is naturally present in warm springs and mesothermal (orogenic) gold-bearing quartz vein systems in the South Island of New Zealand. Mercury amalgamation was used historically in ore processing at gold (Au) mines, resulting in composite natural and anthropogenic Hg signatures at these sites. This study compares natural Hg enrichment of the Au vein systems, residual anthropogenic Hg added for amalgamation, and enrichment of naturally present Hg during ore processing. Mercury concentration data are presented for solids and water at historic mine sites, the modern Macraes mine, fault-related warm springs, and zones of naturally occurring cinnabar and Hg-bearing Au. Arsenic (As) concentrations are also presented, as As is the most environmentally significant element in this tectonic setting. Tailings and processing residues at historic mine sites (Blackwater mine, West Coast; Golden Point and Golden Bar, Hyde-Macraes shear zone) contain up to 1000 mg/kg Hg, and in adjacent surface waters Hg is at or slightly above background from 0.6 to 0.8 ng/L. Relative to South Island Hg, As is more environmentally significant: solid wastes at some historic mine and mineral processing sites contain up to 30.5 wt% As due to enrichment of natural As in mineralised rocks. Shallow groundwater and processing waters at the modern Macraes mine are up to 0.01 mg/L Hg due to natural Hg in mineralised rocks, and no significant Hg elevation is evident in nearby surface waters, which are 3 to 10 4 times higher than primary ore, and Hg is disproportionally increased relative to As, indicating that much of the Hg was added during the amalgamation process. Natural cinnabar deposition from warm springs results in localised, strongly elevated Hg, equal to or less than the Hg contents in historic mine processing residues. Warm spring precipitates are up to 111 mg/kg Hg and waters are 0.3 μg/L Hg, comparable to data reported for active North Island geothermal (epithermal-style) systems

  2. Solid-phase partitioning of mercury in artisanal gold mine tailings from selected key areas in Mindanao, Philippines, and its implications for mercury detoxification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Opiso, Einstine M; Aseneiro, John Paul J; Banda, Marybeth Hope T; Tabelin, Carlito B

    2018-03-01

    The solid-phase partitioning of mercury could provide necessary data in the identification of remediation techniques in contaminated artisanal gold mine tailings. This study was conducted to determine the total mercury content of mine wastes and identify its solid-phase partitioning through selective sequential extraction coupled with cold vapour atomic absorption spectroscopy. Samples from mine tailings and the carbon-in-pulp (CIP) process were obtained from selected key areas in Mindanao, Philippines. The results showed that mercury use is still prevalent among small-scale gold miners in the Philippines. Tailings after ball mill-gravity concentration (W-BM and Li-BM samples) from Mt Diwata and Libona contained high levels of mercury amounting to 25.024 and 6.5 mg kg -1 , respectively. The most prevalent form of mercury in the mine tailings was elemental/amalgamated mercury, followed by water soluble, exchangeable, organic and strongly bound phases, respectively. In contrast, mercury content of carbon-in-pulp residues were significantly lower at only 0.3 and 0.06 mg kg -1 for P-CIP (Del Pilar) and W-CIP (Mt Diwata), respectively. The bulk of mercury in P-CIP samples was partitioned in residual fraction while in W-CIP samples, water soluble mercury predominated. Overall, this study has several important implications with regards to mercury detoxification of contaminated mine tailings from Mindanao, Philippines.

  3. Sedentary nestlings of Wood Stork as monitors of mercury contamination in the gold mining region of the Brazilian Pantanal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nassif Del Lama, Silvia, E-mail: dsdl@ufscar.br [Laboratorio Genetica de Aves, Departamento de Genetica e Evolucao, Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos, Rodovia Washington Luis km 235, 13565-905 Sao Carlos, Sao Paulo (Brazil); Dosualdo Rocha, Cristiano [Laboratorio Genetica de Aves, Departamento de Genetica e Evolucao, Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos, Rodovia Washington Luis km 235, 13565-905 Sao Carlos, Sao Paulo (Brazil); Figueiredo Jardim, Wilson [Institute of Chemistry, State University of Campinas, P.O. Box 6154, 13083-970 Sao Paulo (Brazil); Tsai, Jo-Szu; Frederick, Peter Crawford [Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, P.O. Box 110430, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611 (United States)

    2011-11-15

    Sedentary organisms that are at top trophic levels allow inference about the level of local mercury contamination. We evaluated mercury contamination in feather tissue of nestling Wood Storks (Mycteria americana), sampled in different parts of the Brazilian Pantanal that were variably polluted by mercury releases from gold mining activities. Levels of mercury in feathers sampled in seven breeding colonies were determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy, and the mean value of mercury concentration was 0.557 {mu}g/g, dry weight (n=124), range 0.024-4.423 {mu}g/g. From this total sample, 21 feathers that represent 30% of nestlings collected in Porto da Fazenda and Tucum colonies, in the northern region, ranged from 1.0 to 4.43 {mu}g/g, dry weight (median value=1.87 {mu}g/g). We found significant differences among regions (H=57.342; p=0<0.05). Results suggest that permanently flooded areas, or along mainstream rivers are more contaminated by mercury than dry areas, regardless of the distance from the gold mining center, which is located in the northern Pantanal. Highest values found in nestlings feathers were similar to those found in feathers of adult birds and in tissues of adult mammals that are less sedentary and were captured in the same region of Pantanal. These findings indicate that mercury released has been biomagnified and it is present in high concentrations in tissues of top consumers. We suggest a program to monitor mercury availability in this ecosystem using sedentary life forms of top predators like Wood Storks or other piscivorous birds. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Sedentary stork nestlings were used for the first time to show local mercury contamination of Pantanal. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Differences were found among regions but they are not explained only by distance from the gold mining. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Permanently flooded areas and areas along mainstream rivers are more contaminated than dry areas. Black

  4. Sedentary nestlings of Wood Stork as monitors of mercury contamination in the gold mining region of the Brazilian Pantanal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nassif Del Lama, Silvia; Dosualdo Rocha, Cristiano; Figueiredo Jardim, Wilson; Tsai, Jo-Szu; Frederick, Peter Crawford

    2011-01-01

    Sedentary organisms that are at top trophic levels allow inference about the level of local mercury contamination. We evaluated mercury contamination in feather tissue of nestling Wood Storks (Mycteria americana), sampled in different parts of the Brazilian Pantanal that were variably polluted by mercury releases from gold mining activities. Levels of mercury in feathers sampled in seven breeding colonies were determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy, and the mean value of mercury concentration was 0.557 μg/g, dry weight (n=124), range 0.024–4.423 μg/g. From this total sample, 21 feathers that represent 30% of nestlings collected in Porto da Fazenda and Tucum colonies, in the northern region, ranged from 1.0 to 4.43 μg/g, dry weight (median value=1.87 μg/g). We found significant differences among regions (H=57.342; p=0<0.05). Results suggest that permanently flooded areas, or along mainstream rivers are more contaminated by mercury than dry areas, regardless of the distance from the gold mining center, which is located in the northern Pantanal. Highest values found in nestlings feathers were similar to those found in feathers of adult birds and in tissues of adult mammals that are less sedentary and were captured in the same region of Pantanal. These findings indicate that mercury released has been biomagnified and it is present in high concentrations in tissues of top consumers. We suggest a program to monitor mercury availability in this ecosystem using sedentary life forms of top predators like Wood Storks or other piscivorous birds. - Highlights: ► Sedentary stork nestlings were used for the first time to show local mercury contamination of Pantanal. ► Differences were found among regions but they are not explained only by distance from the gold mining. ► Permanently flooded areas and areas along mainstream rivers are more contaminated than dry areas. ► Mercury has been biomagnified in Pantanal and it is found in high concentrations in top

  5. Environmental transformation and distribution of mercury released from gold mining and its implications on human health in Tanzania, studied by nuclear techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ikingura, Justinian R.

    2001-01-01

    The catchment areas of Lake Victoria in Tanzania are impacted by mercury contamination from small-scale gold mining activities. A preliminary survey of the mercury contamination has indicated in some cases mercury concentrations that are higher than background levels in soil and river sediment downstream of the mining areas. Average mercury concentration in contaminated soil is in the order of 3.4 mg/kg whereas in river sediment the concentration is about 4.9 mg/kg. Mercury concentrations in fish from a few areas of the Lake Victoria close to gold mining areas are in the range of 2-20 ppb. These fish mercury concentrations are surprisingly low considering the extent of mercury contamination in the Lake Victoria catchment. The dynamics of mercury cycling and their long-term impact on mercury levels in fish and other aquatic organisms in the Lake Victoria gold fields still need to be clarified. Research activities for the first year (2000) will concentrate on the determination of total mercury distribution patterns among soil, river water, sediment, and biota (fish, and other aquatic biota) in two areas (Mugusu-Nungwe Bay and Imweru-Bukombe Bay) of the Lake Victoria gold fields. The relationships between local tropical soil-sediment- and water-chemistry and the distribution of mercury in the contaminated areas will be investigated. Data from this work will be used in the identification and selection of suitable bio-monitors for mercury contamination and human health risk assessment in the study areas. In the second year, the project will focus mainly on methylmercury production and partition between sediment, water and biota in contaminated local tropical sediments. The main factors influencing the methylation and distribution of mercury species will be evaluated in laboratory experiments and extrapolated to environmental conditions. The results of the project will have important implications in mercury pollution monitoring, mitigation, and health risk assessment not

  6. Assessment of mercury erosion by surface water in Wanshan mercury mining area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, ZhiHui; Feng, Xinbin; Zhang, Chao; Shang, Lihai; Qiu, Guangle

    2013-08-01

    Soil erosion is a main cause of land degradation, and in its accelerated form is also one of the most serious ecological environmental problems. Moreover, there are few studies on migration of mercury (Hg) induced by soil erosion in seriously Hg-polluted districts. This paper selected Wanshan Hg mining area, SW China as the study area. Revised universal soil loss equation (RUSLE) and Geographic information system (GIS) methods were applied to calculate soil and Hg erosion and to classify soil erosion intensity. Our results show that the soil erosion rate can reach up to 600,884tkm(-2)yr(-1). Surfaces associated with very slight and extremely severe erosion include 76.6% of the entire land in Wanshan. Furthermore, the cumulative erosion rates in the area impacted by extremely severe erosion make up 90.5% of the total. On an annual basis, Hg surface erosion load was predicted to be 505kgyr(-1) and the corresponding mean migration flux of Hg was estimated to be 3.02kgkm(-2)yr(-1). The erosion loads of Hg resulting from farmland and meadow soil were 175 and 319kgyr(-1) respectively, which were enhanced compared to other landscape types due to the fact that they are generally located in the steep zones associated with significant reclamation. Contributing to establish a mass balance of Hg in Wanshan Hg mining area, this study supplies a dependable scientific basis for controlling soil and water erosion in the local ecosystems. Land use change is the most effective way for reducing Hg erosion load in Wanshan mining area. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Mercury accumulation and attenuation at a rapidly forming delta with a point source of mining waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johnson, Bryce E., E-mail: bjohnson@ce.berkeley.edu [Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States); Esser, Bradley K. [Chemical Sciences Division, 7000 East Avenue, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore CA 94550 (United States); Whyte, Dyan C.; Ganguli, Priya M.; Austin, Carrie M. [California Regional Water Quality Control Board, 1515 Clay St., Suite 1400, Oakland, CA 94612 (United States); Hunt, James R. [Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)

    2009-09-01

    The Walker Creek intertidal delta of Tomales Bay, California is impacted by a former mercury mine within the watershed. Eleven short sediment cores (10 cm length) collected from the delta found monomethylmercury (MMHg) concentrations ranging from 0.3 to 11.4 ng/g (dry wt.), with lower concentrations occurring at the vegetated marsh and upstream channel locations. Algal mats common to the delta's sediment surface had MMHg concentrations ranging from 7.5 to 31.5 ng/g, and the top 1 cm of sediment directly under the mats had two times greater MMHg concentrations compared to adjacent locations without algal covering. Spatial trends in resident biota reflect enhanced MMHg uptake at the delta compared to other bay locations. Eighteen sediment cores, 1 to 2 m deep, collected from the 1.2 km{sup 2} delta provide an estimate of a total mercury (Hg) inventory of 2500 {+-} 500 kg. Sediment Hg concentrations ranged from pre-mining background conditions of approximately 0.1 {mu}g/g to a post-mining maximum of 5 {mu}g/g. Sediment accumulation rates were determined from three sediment cores using measured differences of {sup 137}Cs activity. We estimate a pre-mining Hg accumulation of less than 20 kg/yr, and a period of maximum Hg accumulation in the 1970s and 1980s with loading rates greater than 50 kg/yr, corresponding to the failure of a tailings dam at the mine site. At the time of sampling (2003) over 40 kg/yr of Hg was still accumulating at the delta, indicating limited recovery. We attribute observed spatial evolution of elevated Hg levels to ongoing inputs and sediment re-working, and estimate the inventory of the anthropogenic fraction of total Hg to be at least 1500 {+-} 300 kg. We suggest ongoing sediment inputs and methylation at the deltaic surface support enhanced mercury levels for resident biota and transfer to higher trophic levels throughout the Bay.

  8. In Vitro Studies Evaluating Leaching of Mercury from Mine Waste Calcine Using Simulated Human Body Fluids

    OpenAIRE

    Gray, John E.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Morman, Suzette A.; Higueras, Pablo L.; Crock, James G.; Lowers, Heather A.; Witten, Mark L.

    2010-01-01

    In vitro bioaccessibility (IVBA) studies were carried out on samples of mercury (Hg) mine-waste calcine (roasted Hg ore) by leaching with simulated human body fluids. The objective was to estimate potential human exposure to Hg due to inhalation of airborne calcine particulates and hand-to-mouth ingestion of Hg-bearing calcines. Mine waste calcines collected from Hg mines at Almad?n, Spain, and Terlingua, Texas, contain Hg sulfide, elemental Hg, and soluble Hg compounds, which constitute prim...

  9. Mercury Pollution Due to Small-Scale Gold Mining in the Philippines: An Economic Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Orbeta, Aniceto C.; Israel, Danilo C.; Asirot, Jasminda

    2000-01-01

    The study reviews small-scale gold mining in the Philippines and economically assesses mercury pollution and other development problems in the industry. The end purpose is to suggest measures to address the problems and promote better environmental and overall management of small-scale mining. The study has used secondary data from mining institutions and primary data from key informants and small-scale gold miners and processors in the two case study sites.

  10. Mercury Pollution Due to Small-Scale Gold Mining in the Philippines: An Economic Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Israel, Danilo C.; Asirot, Jasminda

    2002-01-01

    The study reviews small-scale gold mining in the Philippines and economically assesses mercury pollution and other development problems in the industry. The end purpose is to suggest measures to address the problems and promote better environmental and overall management of small-scale mining. The study has used secondary data from mining institutions and primary data from key informants and small-scale gold miners and processors in the two case study sites. brazzer

  11. Mercury Pollution from Small-Scale Gold Mining Can Be Stopped by Implementing the Gravity-Borax Method--A Two-Year Follow-Up Study from Two Mining Communities in the Philippines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Køster-Rasmussen, Rasmus; Westergaard, Maria L; Brasholt, Marie; Gutierrez, Richard; Jørs, Erik; Thomsen, Jane F

    2016-02-01

    Mercury is used globally to extract gold in artisanal and small-scale gold mining. The mercury-free gravity-borax method for gold extraction was introduced in two mining communities using mercury in the provinces Kalinga and Camarines Norte. This article describes project activities and quantitative changes in mercury consumption and analyzes the implementation with diffusion of innovations theory. Activities included miner-to-miner training; seminars for health-care workers, school teachers, and children; and involvement of community leaders. Baseline (2011) and follow-up (2013) data were gathered on mining practices and knowledge about mercury toxicology. Most miners in Kalinga converted to the gravity-borax method, whereas only a few did so in Camarines Norte. Differences in the nature of the social systems impacted the success of the implementation, and involvement of the tribal organization facilitated the shift in Kalinga. In conclusion, the gravity-borax method is a doable alternative to mercury use in artisanal and small-scale gold mining, but support from the civil society is needed. © The Author(s) 2016.

  12. Mercury and Mining Produc­tion in New Spain (1810-1821

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Eugenia Romero Sotelo

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available This work presents results of research on financing, transporta­tion and allotment of quicksilver in New Spain's mining industry during 1810-1821. The author points out that the  war of lnde­pendence was the main cause of the mining crisis, describes the effect of this conflict on production organization and distribu­tion of colonial silver industry, and claims that one of the strongest blows on mining was the Spanish government's credit with­ drawal. Furthermore, the study offers data on amounts of mercury available for mining, costs of its transportation, and details of its allotment and distribution to royal mines.

  13. Applicability of two mobile analysers for mercury in urine in small-scale gold mining areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baeuml, Jennifer; Bose-O'Reilly, Stephan; Lettmeier, Beate; Maydl, Alexandra; Messerer, Katalin; Roider, Gabriele; Drasch, Gustav; Siebert, Uwe

    2011-12-01

    Mercury is still used in developing countries to extract gold from the ore in small-scale gold mining areas. This is a major health hazard for people living in mining areas. The concentration of mercury in urine was analysed in different mining areas in Zimbabwe, Indonesia and Tanzania. First the urine samples were analysed by CV-AAS (cold vapour atomic absorption spectrometry) during the field projects with a mobile mercury analyser (Lumex(®) or Seefelder(®)) and secondly, in a laboratory with a stationary CV-AAS mercury analyser (PerkinElmer(®)). Caused by the different systems (reduction agent either SnCl(2) (Lumex(®) or Seefelder(®))) or NaBH(4) (PerkinElmer(®)), with the mobile analysers only the inorganic mercury was obtained and with the stationary system the total mercury concentration was measured. The aims of the study were whether the results obtained in field with the mobile equipments can be compared with the stationary reference method in the laboratory and allow the application of these mobile analysers in screening studies on concerned populations to select those, who are exposed to critical mercury levels. Overall, the concentrations obtained with the two mobile systems were approximately 25% lower than determined with the stationary system. Nevertheless, both mobile systems seem to be very useful for screening of volunteers in field. Moreover, regional staff may be trained on such analysers to perform screening tests by themselves. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  14. Environmental assessment of mercury pollution in urban tailings from gold mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leiva, Manuel A G; Morales, Sandra

    2013-04-01

    It is well-known that small-scale artisanal mining is a source of mercury emissions into the environment, mainly from the use of rudimentary technologies that use mercury amalgamation in the extraction process. Mines near Andacollo, which is located in the Coquimbo region of Chile, use primitive methods to mine gold and copper. In this study, we determined the mercury content of gold mining wastes from Andacollo. At each site, we randomly sampled the soil at the surface and at a depth of 2 m following the ISO 10381 guidelines. Mercury analysis was performed with a direct mercury analyzer. At least one site was contaminated at a mercury concentration of 13.6±1.4 mg kg(-1), which was above the international recommendations that were set by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment's soil quality guidelines (CA-SQG) and the Dutch guidelines (NL-RIVM). At least four of the fourteen sites in this study were within the control and tolerance levels of these recommendations. Better characterization of these sites is required to establish whether they represent a risk to the local community. Based on the US-EPA recommendations, which have a higher tolerance limit, none of the fourteen sites should pose a risk to humans. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Mercury Levels in Human Hair and Farmed Fish near Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining Communities in the Madre de Dios River Basin, Peru

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aubrey L. Langeland

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM has been an important source of income for communities in the Madre de Dios River Basin in Peru for hundreds of years. However, in recent decades, the scale of ASGM activities in the region has increased dramatically, and exposures to a variety of occupational and environmental hazards related to ASGM, including mercury, are becoming more widespread. The aims of our study were to: (1 examine patterns in the total hair mercury level of human participants in several communities in the region and compare these results to the 2.2 µg/g total hair mercury level equivalent to the World Health Organization (WHO Expert Committee of Food Additives (JECFA’s Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake (PTWI; and (2, to measure the mercury levels of paco (Piaractus brachypomus fish raised in local aquaculture ponds, in order to compare these levels to the EPA Fish Tissue Residue Criterion of 0.3 µg Hg/g fish (wet weight. We collected hair samples from 80 participants in four communities (one control and three where ASGM activities occurred in the region, and collected 111 samples from fish raised in 24 local aquaculture farms. We then analyzed the samples for total mercury. Total mercury levels in hair were statistically significantly higher in the mining communities than in the control community, and increased with increasing geodesic distance from the Madre de Dios headwaters, did not differ by sex, and frequently exceeded the reference level. Regression analyses indicated that higher hair mercury levels were associated with residence in ASGM communities. The analysis of paco fish samples found no samples that exceeded the EPA tissue residue criterion. Collectively, these results align with other recent studies showing that ASGM activities are associated with elevated human mercury exposure. The fish farmed through the relatively new process of aquaculture in ASGM areas appeared to have little potential to contribute

  16. Mercury Levels in Human Hair and Farmed Fish near Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining Communities in the Madre de Dios River Basin, Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langeland, Aubrey L; Hardin, Rebecca D; Neitzel, Richard L

    2017-03-14

    Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) has been an important source of income for communities in the Madre de Dios River Basin in Peru for hundreds of years. However, in recent decades, the scale of ASGM activities in the region has increased dramatically, and exposures to a variety of occupational and environmental hazards related to ASGM, including mercury, are becoming more widespread. The aims of our study were to: (1) examine patterns in the total hair mercury level of human participants in several communities in the region and compare these results to the 2.2 µg/g total hair mercury level equivalent to the World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Committee of Food Additives (JECFA)'s Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake (PTWI); and (2), to measure the mercury levels of paco ( Piaractus brachypomus ) fish raised in local aquaculture ponds, in order to compare these levels to the EPA Fish Tissue Residue Criterion of 0.3 µg Hg/g fish (wet weight). We collected hair samples from 80 participants in four communities (one control and three where ASGM activities occurred) in the region, and collected 111 samples from fish raised in 24 local aquaculture farms. We then analyzed the samples for total mercury. Total mercury levels in hair were statistically significantly higher in the mining communities than in the control community, and increased with increasing geodesic distance from the Madre de Dios headwaters, did not differ by sex, and frequently exceeded the reference level. Regression analyses indicated that higher hair mercury levels were associated with residence in ASGM communities. The analysis of paco fish samples found no samples that exceeded the EPA tissue residue criterion. Collectively, these results align with other recent studies showing that ASGM activities are associated with elevated human mercury exposure. The fish farmed through the relatively new process of aquaculture in ASGM areas appeared to have little potential to contribute to human

  17. Characterization of Mercury Emissions from ASGM Goldshop Activities in Peru

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercury (Hg), used in artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) practices, is recognized as a significant source of Hg release to the environment and is a major area of focus of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Global Mercury Partnership. Hg is used to bind (form a...

  18. Contamination by mercury in air of the mining district of San Martin de Loba in Bolivar's Department, Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olivero V, J.; Young C, F.; Caballero G, K.

    2014-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a heavy metal, considered a highly toxic pollutant. In its elemental state is volatile, making it easy to transport over long distances through the atmosphere, so that environmental pollution caused by it is a serious problem worldwide. Activities such as gold mining, where metallic Hg is used, have contributed with its global distribution, affecting ecosystems and human health. The aim of this study was to determine the levels of total mercury (T-Hg) in air in gold mining areas in Southern Bolivar, particularly in the mining district of San Martin de Loba, in the municipalities of San Martin de Loba and Barranco de Loba (Mina Santa Cruz), Colombia. In situ analyses were performed by atomic absorption spectroscopy, using a portable Ra-915 + Zeeman mercury analyzer. In Mina Santa Cruz, one of the most important gold mines in Colombia, concentrations of Hg in air ranged between 163.7 ± 6.6 and 40 455 ± 2154 mg/m 3 , while in the urban area of San Martin de Loba varied from 223.6 ± 20.8 to 27 140 ± 212.5 ng/m 3 . In those places where an amalgam burning process was taking place at the time of the measurements, Hg concentrations reached values of 40 455 ± 2154 ng/m 3 . These data imply a severe occupational exposure to Hg for operators and citizens living in cities located near mines. Therefore, it is important to regulate and control the use of Hg in gold mining, avoiding a chronic impact of the metal on the health of people and the environment. (author)

  19. Distribution and mobility of mercury in soils of a gold mining region, Cuyuni river basin, Venezuela.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos-Francés, F; García-Sánchez, A; Alonso-Rojo, P; Contreras, F; Adams, M

    2011-04-01

    An extensive and remote gold mining region located in the East of Venezuela has been studied with the aim of assessing the distribution and mobility of mercury in soil and the level of Hg pollution at artisanal gold mining sites. To do so, soils and pond sediments were sampled at sites not subject to anthropological influence, as well as in areas affected by gold mining activities. Total Hg in regionally distributed soils ranged between 0.02 mg kg(-1) and 0.40 mg kg(-1), with a median value of 0.11 mg kg(-1), which is slightly higher than soil Hg worldwide, possibly indicating long-term atmospheric input or more recent local atmospheric input, in addition to minor lithogenic sources. A reference Hg concentration of 0.33 mg kg(-1) is proposed for the detection of mining affected soils in this region. Critical total Hg concentrations were found in the surrounding soils of pollutant sources, such as milling-amalgamation sites, where soil Hg contents ranged from 0.16 mg kg(-1) to 542 mg kg(-1) with an average of 26.89 mg kg(-1), which also showed high levels of elemental Hg, but quite low soluble+exchangeable Hg fraction (0.02-4.90 mg kg(-1)), suggesting low Hg soil mobility and bioavailability, as confirmed by soil column leaching tests. The vertical distribution of Hg through the soil profiles, as well as variations in soil Hg contents with distance from the pollution source, and Hg in pond mining sediments were also analysed. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Mercury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vilas, F.; Chapman, C.R.; Matthews, M.S.

    1988-01-01

    Papers are presented on future observations of and missions to Mercury, the photometry and polarimetry of Mercury, the surface composition of Mercury from reflectance spectrophotometry, the Goldstone radar observations of Mercury, the radar observations of Mercury, the stratigraphy and geologic history of Mercury, the geomorphology of impact craters on Mercury, and the cratering record on Mercury and the origin of impacting objects. Consideration is also given to the tectonics of Mercury, the tectonic history of Mercury, Mercury's thermal history and the generation of its magnetic field, the rotational dynamics of Mercury and the state of its core, Mercury's magnetic field and interior, the magnetosphere of Mercury, and the Mercury atmosphere. Other papers are on the present bounds on the bulk composition of Mercury and the implications for planetary formation processes, the building stones of the planets, the origin and composition of Mercury, the formation of Mercury from planetesimals, and theoretical considerations on the strange density of Mercury

  1. Pollution status and mercury sedimentation in small river near amalgamation and cyanidation units of Talawaan-Tatelu gold mining, North Sulawesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T M Palapa

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Information Journal Help User Username Password Remember me Notifications View Subscribe / Unsubscribe Search Keyword : The activities of traditional gold mining in the region of Talawaan-Tatelu, North Minahasa regency, North Sulawesi, have been ongoing since 1998. Processing the gold in the mine consists of three stages i.e., the excavation, milling and amalgamation, and the use of cyanide tanks. Waste from the processing units which contains high mercury, generally flows directly into small rivers nearby. This study aimed to determine the pollution status and mercury sedimentation in a small river near the amalgamation and cyanidation processing units in Talawaan-Tatelu gold mining. Water and sediment samples were taken from seven stations along a small river, as many as four temporal replications (weekly. Mercury determination in water and sediments was done by using Cold Vapor Atomic Fluorescence Spectrometry. Pollution status was determined through the calculation of Hg ratio in water samples and in water quality criterion (4th class, as noted in The Indonesian Government Regulation No. 82 of 2001 on Water Quality and Water Pollution Control, while the mercury sedimentation was calculated from the ratio of mercury in water and sediment. The results showed that there are differences in the status of pollution and mercury sedimentation of seven sampling stations. Amalgamation and cyanidation processing units provide significant impact on the status of pollution (although it is categorized in contamination and mercury sedimentation along small river in the gold mining area of Talawaan-Tatelu. The downstream of this small river, Talawaan River, is the main river of the Talawaan watershed. Things that should be a concern are Talawaan rural communities living near Talawaan River who often use the water for daily needs such as bathing and washing. Risk to public health around the river can arise when the status of pollution and mercury

  2. Testing and modeling the influence of reclamation and control methods for reducing nonpoint mercury emissions associated with industrial open pit gold mines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Matthieu B; Gustin, Mae S

    2013-06-01

    Industrial gold mining is a significant source of mercury (Hg) emission to the atmosphere. To investigate ways to reduce these emissions, reclamation and dust and mercury control methods used at open pit gold mining operations in Nevada were studied in a laboratory setting. Using this information along with field data, and building off previous work, total annual Hg emissions were estimated for two active gold mines in northern Nevada. Results showed that capping mining waste materials with a low-Hg substrate can reduce Hg emissions from 50 to nearly 100%. The spraying of typical dust control solutions often results in higher Hg emissions, especially as materials dry after application. The concentrated application of a dithiocarbamate Hg control reagent appears to reduce Hg emissions, but further testing mimicking the actual distribution of this chemical within an active leach solution is needed to make a more definitive assessment.

  3. A mass balance mercury budget for a mine-dominated lake: Clear Lake, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suchanek, T.H.; Cooke, J.; Keller, K.; Jorgensen, S.; Richerson, P.J.; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Harner, E.J.; Adam, D.P.

    2009-01-01

    The Sulphur Bank Mercury Mine (SBMM), active intermittently from 1873–1957 and now a USEPA Superfund site, was previously estimated to have contributed at least 100 metric tons (105 kg) of mercury (Hg) into the Clear Lake aquatic ecosystem. We have confirmed this minimum estimate. To better quantify the contribution of the mine in relation to other sources of Hg loading into Clear Lake and provide data that might help reduce that loading, we analyzed Inputs and Outputs of Hg to Clear Lake and Storage of Hg in lakebed sediments using a mass balance approach. We evaluated Inputs from (1) wet and dry atmospheric deposition from both global/regional and local sources, (2) watershed tributaries, (3) groundwater inflows, (4) lakebed springs and (5) the mine. Outputs were quantified from (1) efflux (volatilization) of Hg from the lake surface to the atmosphere, (2) municipal and agricultural water diversions, (3) losses from out-flowing drainage of Cache Creek that feeds into the California Central Valley and (4) biotic Hg removal by humans and wildlife. Storage estimates include (1) sediment burial from historic and prehistoric periods (over the past 150–3,000 years) from sediment cores to ca. 2.5m depth dated using dichloro diphenyl dichloroethane (DDD), 210Pb and 14C and (2) recent Hg deposition in surficial sediments. Surficial sediments collected in October 2003 (11 years after mine site remediation) indicate no reduction (but a possible increase) in sediment Hg concentrations over that time and suggest that remediation has not significantly reduced overall Hg loading to the lake. Currently, the mine is believed to contribute ca. 322–331 kg of Hg annually to Clear Lake, which represents ca. 86–99% of the total Hg loading to the lake. We estimate that natural sedimentation would cover the existing contaminated sediments within ca. 150–300 years.

  4. A cross-sectional survey on knowledge and perceptions of health risks associated with arsenic and mercury contamination from artisanal gold mining in Tanzania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charles Elias

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An estimated 0.5 to 1.5 million informal miners, of whom 30-50% are women, rely on artisanal mining for their livelihood in Tanzania. Mercury, used in the processing gold ore, and arsenic, which is a constituent of some ores, are common occupational exposures that frequently result in widespread environmental contamination. Frequently, the mining activities are conducted haphazardly without regard for environmental, occupational, or community exposure. The primary objective of this study was to assess community risk knowledge and perception of potential mercury and arsenic toxicity and/or exposure from artisanal gold mining in Rwamagasa in northwestern Tanzania. Methods A cross-sectional survey of respondents in five sub-villages in the Rwamagasa Village located in Geita District in northwestern Tanzania near Lake Victoria was conducted. This area has a history of artisanal gold mining and many of the population continue to work as miners. Using a clustered random selection approach for recruitment, a total of 160 individuals over 18 years of age completed a structured interview. Results The interviews revealed wide variations in knowledge and risk perceptions concerning mercury and arsenic exposure, with 40.6% (n=65 and 89.4% (n=143 not aware of the health effects of mercury and arsenic exposure respectively. Males were significantly more knowledgeable (n=59, 36.9% than females (n=36, 22.5% with regard to mercury (x2=3.99, px2=22.82, p= Conclusions The knowledge of individuals living in Rwamagasa, Tanzania, an area with a history of artisanal gold mining, varied widely with regard to the health hazards of mercury and arsenic. In these communities there was limited awareness of the threats to health associated with exposure to mercury and arsenic. This lack of knowledge, combined with minimal environmental monitoring and controlled waste management practices, highlights the need for health education, surveillance, and policy

  5. A cross-sectional survey on knowledge and perceptions of health risks associated with arsenic and mercury contamination from artisanal gold mining in Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Charles, Elias; Thomas, Deborah SK; Dewey, Deborah; Davey, Mark; Ngallaba, Sospatro E; Konje, Eveline

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Background An estimated 0.5 to 1.5 million informal miners, of whom 30-50% are women, rely on artisanal mining for their livelihood in Tanzania. Mercury, used in the processing gold ore, and arsenic, which is a constituent of some ores, are common occupational exposures that frequently result in widespread environmental contamination. Frequently, the mining activities are conducted haphazardly without regard for environmental, occupational, or community exposure. The primary objectiv...

  6. Mercury in environmental samples from a waterbody contaminated by gold mining in Colombia, South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olivero, J; Solano, B

    1998-06-30

    Environmental samples from a marsh, which receives mercury discharges from a gold mine in Colombia (South America), were evaluated for total mercury content. Mercury concentrations were analyzed in sediments, macrophytes and fish species from different trophic levels. The Mean mercury levels in sediments oscillated between 140 and 355 micrograms/kg whereas in the macrophyte Eichornia crassipes levels were between 219 and 277 microgram/kg with practically no interseasonal variations. The mercury content in the muscle of fish varied depending on the position in the trophic chain and the feeding habits of each species, oscillating between non-detectable (< 7.4 microgram/kg) and 1084 micrograms/kg. Seasonal variations were only observed in fish species whose habitats are mostly the bottom sediment. The presence of mercury in some fish appeared to be the result of bioaccumulation rather than a biomagnification processes. This was clearly evidenced in the detritivorous species Triportheus magdalenae which obtain their food within the sediments and whose mercury concentrations were significantly higher when compared to the other species including carnivorous. The relatively low mercury concentrations found in fish may be due to both the dispersion of the contaminant once it reaches the waterbody and the migrational characteristics of the fish species.

  7. BLM Colorado Mining Claims Active

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of the Interior — Shapefile Format –This data set consists of active mining claim records extracted from BLM’s LR2000 database. These records contain case attributes as well as legal...

  8. Challenges with minimising mercury pollution in the small-scale gold mining sector: experiences from the Guianas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilson, Gavin; Vieira, Rickford

    2007-12-01

    This paper examines the barriers to mitigating mercury pollution at small-scale gold mines in the Guianas (Guyana, French Guiana and Suriname), and prescribes recommendations for overcoming these obstacles. Whilst considerable attention has been paid to analysing the environmental impacts of operations in the region, minimal research has been undertaken to identify appropriate policy and educational initiatives for addressing the mounting mercury problem. Findings from recent fieldwork and selected interviews with operators from Guyanese and Surinamese gold mining regions reveal that legislative incapacity, the region's varied industry policy stances, various technological problems, and low environmental awareness on the part of communities are impeding efforts to facilitate improved mercury management at small-scale gold mines in the Guianas. Marked improvements can be achieved, however, if legislation, particularly that pertaining to mercury, is harmonised in the region; educational seminars continue to be held in important mining districts; and additional outlets for disseminating environmental equipment and mercury-free technologies are provided.

  9. The burden of chronic mercury intoxication in artisanal small-scale gold mining in Zimbabwe: data availability and preliminary estimates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steckling, Nadine; Bose-O'Reilly, Stephan; Pinheiro, Paulo; Plass, Dietrich; Shoko, Dennis; Drasch, Gustav; Bernaudat, Ludovic; Siebert, Uwe; Hornberg, Claudia

    2014-12-13

    Artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is a poverty-driven activity practiced in over 70 countries worldwide. Zimbabwe is amongst the top ten countries using large quantities of mercury to extract gold from ore. This analysis was performed to check data availability and derive a preliminary estimate of disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) due to mercury use in ASGM in Zimbabwe. Cases of chronic mercury intoxication were identified following an algorithm using mercury-related health effects and mercury in human specimens. The sample prevalence amongst miners and controls (surveyed by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization in 2004 and the University of Munich in 2006) was determined and extrapolated to the entire population of Zimbabwe. Further epidemiological and demographic data were taken from the literature and missing data modeled with DisMod II to quantify DALYs using the methods from the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2004 update published by the World Health Organization (WHO). While there was no disability weight (DW) available indicating the relative disease severity of chronic mercury intoxication, the DW of a comparable disease was assigned by following the criteria 1) chronic condition, 2) triggered by a substance, and 3) causing similar health symptoms. Miners showed a sample prevalence of 72% while controls showed no cases of chronic mercury intoxication. Data availability is very limited why it was necessary to model data and make assumptions about the number of exposed population, the definition of chronic mercury intoxication, DW, and epidemiology. If these assumptions hold, the extrapolation would result in around 95,400 DALYs in Zimbabwe's total population in 2004. This analysis provides a preliminary quantification of the mercury-related health burden from ASGM based on the limited data available. If the determined assumptions hold, chronic mercury intoxication is likely to have been one of the top 20 hazards for population

  10. Geo-Spatial Characterization of Soil Mercury and Arsenic at a High-Altitude Bolivian Gold Mine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Glen D; Pavilonis, Brian; Caravanos, Jack; Grassman, Jean

    2018-02-01

    Soil mercury concentrations at a typical small-scale mine site in the Bolivian Andes were elevated (28-737 mg/kg or ppm) in localized areas where mercury amalgams were either formed or vaporized to release gold, but was not detectable beyond approximately 10 m from its sources. Arsenic was measurable, exceeding known background levels throughout the mine site (77-137,022 ppm), and was also measurable through the local village of Ingenio (36-1803 ppm). Although arsenic levels were high at all surveyed locations, its spatial pattern followed mercury, being highest where mercury was high.

  11. Human health risk assessment of mercury vapor around artisanal small-scale gold mining area, Palu city, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakazawa, Koyomi; Nagafuchi, Osamu; Kawakami, Tomonori; Inoue, Takanobu; Yokota, Kuriko; Serikawa, Yuka; Cyio, Basir; Elvince, Rosana

    2016-02-01

    Emissions of elemental mercury, Hg(0), from artisanal small-scale gold mining activities accounted for 37% of total global Hg(0) emissions in 2010. People who live near gold-mining areas may be exposed to high concentrations of Hg(0). Here, we assessed the human health risk due to Hg(0) exposure among residents of Palu city (Central Sulawesi Province, Indonesia). The area around the city has more than 60t of gold reserves, and the nearby Poboya area is the most active gold-mining site in Indonesia. Owing to its geography, the city experiences alternating land and sea breezes. Sampling was done over a period of 3 years (from 2010 Aug. to 2012 Dec.) intermittently with a passive sampler for Hg(0), a portable handheld mercury analyzer, and a mercury analyzer in four areas of the city and in the Poboya gold-processing area, as well as wind speeds and directions in one area of the city. The 24-h average concentration, wind speed, and wind direction data show that the ambient air in both the gold-processing area and the city was always covered by high concentration of mercury vapor. The Hg(0) concentration in the city was higher at night than in the daytime, owing to the effect of land breezes. These results indicate that the inhabitants of the city were always exposed to high concentrations of Hg(0). The average daytime point-sample Hg(0) concentrations in the city, as measured with a handheld mercury analyzer over 3 days in July 2011, ranged from 2096 to 3299ngm(-3). In comparison, the average daytime Hg(0) concentration in the Poboya gold-processing area was 12,782ngm(-3). All of these concentrations are substantially higher than the World Health Organization air-quality guideline for annual average Hg exposure (1000ngm(-3)). We used the point-sample concentrations to calculate hazard quotient ratios by means of a probabilistic risk assessment method. The results indicated that 93% of the sample population overall was at risk (hazard quotient ratio ≥1 and cut off at

  12. Mercury Exposure Assessment and Spatial Distribution in A Ghanaian Small-Scale Gold Mining Community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaee, Mozhgon; Long, Rachel N; Renne, Elisha P; Basu, Niladri

    2015-09-01

    Mercury is utilized worldwide in artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) and may pose a risk for miners and mining communities. While a number of studies have characterized mercury in ASGM communities, most have focused on a single media and few have taken a holistic approach. Here, a multiple media exposure assessment and cross-sectional study of mercury was conducted in 2010 through 2012 in northeast Ghana with a small-scale gold mining community, Kejetia, a subsistence farming community, Gorogo, and an urban ASGM gold refinery in Bolgatanga. The objective was to assess mercury in a range of human (urine and hair) and ecological (household soil, sediment, fish, and ore) samples to increase understanding of mercury exposure pathways. All participants were interviewed on demographics, occupational and medical histories, and household characteristics. Participants included 90 women of childbearing age and 97 adults from Kejetia and 75 adults from Gorogo. Median total specific gravity-adjusted urinary, hair, and household soil mercury were significantly higher in Kejetia miners (5.18 µg/L, 0.967 µg/g, and 3.77 µg/g, respectively) than Kejetia non-miners (1.18 µg/L, 0.419 µg/g, and 2.00 µg/g, respectively) and Gorogo participants (0.154 µg/L, 0.181 µg/g, and 0.039 µg/g) in 2011. Sediment, fish, and ore Hg concentrations were below guideline values. Median soil mercury from the Bolgatanga refinery was very high (54.6 µg/g). Estimated mean mercury ingestion for Kejetia adults from soil and dust exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reference dose (0.3 µg Hg/kg·day) for pica (0.409 µg Hg/kg·day) and geophagy (20.5 µg Hg/kg·day) scenarios. Most participants with elevated urinary and household soil mercury were miners, but some non-miners approached and exceeded guideline values, suggesting a health risk for non-mining residents living within these communities.

  13. Mercury Exposure Assessment and Spatial Distribution in A Ghanaian Small-Scale Gold Mining Community

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mozhgon Rajaee

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Mercury is utilized worldwide in artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM and may pose a risk for miners and mining communities. While a number of studies have characterized mercury in ASGM communities, most have focused on a single media and few have taken a holistic approach. Here, a multiple media exposure assessment and cross-sectional study of mercury was conducted in 2010 through 2012 in northeast Ghana with a small-scale gold mining community, Kejetia, a subsistence farming community, Gorogo, and an urban ASGM gold refinery in Bolgatanga. The objective was to assess mercury in a range of human (urine and hair and ecological (household soil, sediment, fish, and ore samples to increase understanding of mercury exposure pathways. All participants were interviewed on demographics, occupational and medical histories, and household characteristics. Participants included 90 women of childbearing age and 97 adults from Kejetia and 75 adults from Gorogo. Median total specific gravity-adjusted urinary, hair, and household soil mercury were significantly higher in Kejetia miners (5.18 µg/L, 0.967 µg/g, and 3.77 µg/g, respectively than Kejetia non-miners (1.18 µg/L, 0.419 µg/g, and 2.00 µg/g, respectively and Gorogo participants (0.154 µg/L, 0.181 µg/g, and 0.039 µg/g in 2011. Sediment, fish, and ore Hg concentrations were below guideline values. Median soil mercury from the Bolgatanga refinery was very high (54.6 µg/g. Estimated mean mercury ingestion for Kejetia adults from soil and dust exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reference dose (0.3 µg Hg/kg·day for pica (0.409 µg Hg/kg·day and geophagy (20.5 µg Hg/kg·day scenarios. Most participants with elevated urinary and household soil mercury were miners, but some non-miners approached and exceeded guideline values, suggesting a health risk for non-mining residents living within these communities.

  14. Mercury Exposure Assessment and Spatial Distribution in A Ghanaian Small-Scale Gold Mining Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaee, Mozhgon; Long, Rachel N.; Renne, Elisha P.; Basu, Niladri

    2015-01-01

    Mercury is utilized worldwide in artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) and may pose a risk for miners and mining communities. While a number of studies have characterized mercury in ASGM communities, most have focused on a single media and few have taken a holistic approach. Here, a multiple media exposure assessment and cross-sectional study of mercury was conducted in 2010 through 2012 in northeast Ghana with a small-scale gold mining community, Kejetia, a subsistence farming community, Gorogo, and an urban ASGM gold refinery in Bolgatanga. The objective was to assess mercury in a range of human (urine and hair) and ecological (household soil, sediment, fish, and ore) samples to increase understanding of mercury exposure pathways. All participants were interviewed on demographics, occupational and medical histories, and household characteristics. Participants included 90 women of childbearing age and 97 adults from Kejetia and 75 adults from Gorogo. Median total specific gravity-adjusted urinary, hair, and household soil mercury were significantly higher in Kejetia miners (5.18 µg/L, 0.967 µg/g, and 3.77 µg/g, respectively) than Kejetia non-miners (1.18 µg/L, 0.419 µg/g, and 2.00 µg/g, respectively) and Gorogo participants (0.154 µg/L, 0.181 µg/g, and 0.039 µg/g) in 2011. Sediment, fish, and ore Hg concentrations were below guideline values. Median soil mercury from the Bolgatanga refinery was very high (54.6 µg/g). Estimated mean mercury ingestion for Kejetia adults from soil and dust exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reference dose (0.3 µg Hg/kg·day) for pica (0.409 µg Hg/kg·day) and geophagy (20.5 µg Hg/kg·day) scenarios. Most participants with elevated urinary and household soil mercury were miners, but some non-miners approached and exceeded guideline values, suggesting a health risk for non-mining residents living within these communities. PMID:26340636

  15. Mercury contamination in agricultural soils from abandoned metal mines classified by geology and mineralization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Han Sik; Jung, Myung Chae

    2012-01-01

    This survey aimed to compare mercury concentrations in soils related to geology and mineralization types of mines. A total of 16,386 surface soils (0~15 cm in depth) were taken from agricultural lands near 343 abandoned mines (within 2 km from each mine) and analyzed for Hg by AAS with a hydride-generation device. To meaningfully compare mercury levels in soils with geology and mineralization types, three subclassification criteria were adapted: (1) five mineralization types, (2) four valuable ore mineral types, and (3) four parent rock types. The average concentration of Hg in all soils was 0.204 mg kg(-1) with a range of 0.002-24.07 mg kg(-1). Based on the mineralization types, average Hg concentrations (mg kg(-1)) in the soils decreased in the order of pegmatite (0.250) > hydrothermal vein (0.208) > hydrothermal replacement (0.166) > skarn (0.121) > sedimentary deposits (0.045). In terms of the valuable ore mineral types, the concentrations decreased in the order of Au-Ag-base metal mines ≈ base metal mines > Au-Ag mines > Sn-W-Mo-Fe-Mn mines. For parent rock types, similar concentrations were found in the soils derived from sedimentary rocks and metamorphic rocks followed by heterogeneous rocks with igneous and metamorphic processes. Furthermore, farmland soils contained relatively higher Hg levels than paddy soils. Therefore, it can be concluded that soils in Au, Ag, and base metal mines derived from a hydrothermal vein type of metamorphic rocks and pegmatite deposits contained relatively higher concentrations of mercury in the surface environment.

  16. Understanding mercury binding on activated carbon

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Padak, B.; Wilcox, J. [Stanford University, Stanford, CA (United States)

    2009-10-15

    Understanding the mechanism by which mercury adsorbs on activated carbon is crucial to the design and fabrication of effective capture technologies. In this study, the possible binding mechanism of mercury (Hg) and its species, i.e., HgCl and HgCl{sub 2} on activated carbon is investigated using ab initio-based energetic calculations. The activated carbon surface is modeled by a single graphene layer in which the edge atoms on the upper side are unsaturated in order to simulate the active sites. in some cases, chlorine atoms are placed at the edge sites to examine the effect of chlorine on the binding of Hg, HgCl and HgCl{sub 2}. It has been concluded that both HgCl and HgCl{sub 2} can be adsorbed dissociatively or non-dissociatively. In the case of dissociative adsorption, it is energetically favorable for atomic Hg to desorb and energetically favorable for it to remain on the surface in the Hg{sup 1+} state, HgCl. The Hg{sup 2+}, oxidized compound, HgCl2 was not found to be stable on the surface. The most probable mercury species on the surface was found to be HgCl.

  17. Removal of mercury (Hg) from contaminated water at traditional gold mining area in Central Kalimantan

    OpenAIRE

    Wilopo, Wahyu; Rahman, Denizar; Eka Putra, Doni Prakasa; Warmada, I Wayan

    2015-01-01

    There are many traditional gold mining and processing in Murung Raya Regency, Central Kalimantan. The processing of gold mostly uses mercury (Hg) and produces a lot of waste water. It just throws to the river without any treatment. Therefore the concentration of mercury (Hg) in the river water is over than the standard of drinking water and reach up to 0.346 mg dm-3. This situation is very dangerous because almost of the people in the downstream area depend on the river water for their daily ...

  18. Thermal Treatment of Mercury Mine Wastes Using a Rotary Solar Kiln

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés Navarro

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Thermal desorption, by a rotary kiln of mercury contaminated soil and mine wastes, has been used in order to volatilize mercury from the contaminated medium. Solar thermal desorption is an innovative treatment that uses solar energy to increase the volatility of contaminants, which are removed from a solid matrix by a controlled air flow system. Samples of soils and mine wastes used in the experiments were collected in the abandoned Valle del Azogue mine (SE, Spain, where a complex ore, composed mainly of cinnabar, arsenic minerals (realgar and orpiment and stibnite, was mined. The results showed that thermal treatment at temperatures >400 °C successfully lowered the Hg content (2070–116 ppm to <15 mg kg−1. The lowest values of mercury in treated samples were obtained at a higher temperature and exposition time. The samples that showed a high removal efficiency (>99% were associated with the presence of significant contents of cinnabar and an equivalent diameter above 0.8 mm.

  19. Sources and fate of mercury pollution in Almadén mining district (Spain): Evidences from mercury isotopic compositions in sediments and lichens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez-Moreno, María; Barre, Julien P G; Perrot, Vincent; Bérail, Sylvain; Rodríguez Martín-Doimeadios, Rosa C; Amouroux, David

    2016-03-01

    Variations in mercury (Hg) isotopic compositions have been scarcely investigated until now in the Almadén mining district (Spain), which is one of the most impacted Hg areas worldwide. In this work, we explore and compare Hg isotopic signatures in sediments and lichens from Almadén mining district and its surroundings in order to identify and trace Hg aquatic and atmospheric contamination sources. No statistically significant mass independent fractionation was observed in sediments, while negative Δ(201)Hg values from -0.12 to -0.21‰ (2SD = 0.06‰) were found in lichens. A large range of δ(202)Hg values were reported in sediments, from -1.86 ± 0.21‰ in La Serena Reservoir sites far away from the pollution sources to δ(202)Hg values close to zero in sediments directly influenced by Almadén mining district, whereas lichens presented δ(202)Hg values from -1.95 to -0.40‰ (2SD = 0.15‰). A dilution or mixing trend in Hg isotope signatures versus the distance to the mine was found in sediments along the Valdeazogues River-La Serena Reservoir system and in lichens. This suggests that Hg isotope fingerprints in these samples are providing a direct assessment of Hg inputs and exposure from the mining district, and potential information on diffuse atmospheric contamination and/or geochemical alteration processes in less contaminated sites over the entire hydrosystem. This study confirms the applicability of Hg isotope signatures in lichens and sediments as an effective and complementary tool for tracing aquatic and atmospheric Hg contamination sources and a better constraint of the spatial and temporal fate of Hg released by recent or ancient mining activities. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Mercury concentrations and distribution in soil, water, mine waste leachates, and air in and around mercury mines in the Big Bend region, Texas, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, John E; Theodorakos, Peter M; Fey, David L; Krabbenhoft, David P

    2015-02-01

    Samples of soil, water, mine waste leachates, soil gas, and air were collected from areas mined for mercury (Hg) and baseline sites in the Big Bend area, Texas, to evaluate potential Hg contamination in the region. Soil samples collected within 300 m of an inactive Hg mine contained elevated Hg concentrations (3.8-11 µg/g), which were considerably higher than Hg in soil collected from baseline sites (0.03-0.05 µg/g) distal (as much as 24 km) from mines. Only three soil samples collected within 300 m of the mine exceeded the probable effect concentration for Hg of 1.06 µg/g, above which harmful effects are likely to be observed in sediment-dwelling organisms. Concentrations of Hg in mine water runoff (7.9-14 ng/L) were generally higher than those found in springs and wells (0.05-3.1 ng/L), baseline streams (1.1-9.7 ng/L), and sources of drinking water (0.63-9.1 ng/L) collected in the Big Bend region. Concentrations of Hg in all water samples collected in this study were considerably below the 2,000 ng/L drinking water Hg guideline and the 770 ng/L guideline recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to protect aquatic wildlife from chronic effects of Hg. Concentrations of Hg in water leachates obtained from leaching of mine wastes varied widely from <0.001 to 760 µg of Hg in leachate/g of sample leached, but only one leachate exceeded the USEPA Hg industrial soil screening level of 31 µg/g. Concentrations of Hg in soil gas collected at mined sites (690-82,000 ng/m(3)) were highly elevated compared to soil gas collected from baseline sites (1.2-77 ng/m(3)). However, air collected from mined areas at a height of 2 m above the ground surface contained concentrations of Hg (4.9-64 ng/m(3)) that were considerably lower than Hg in soil gas from the mined areas. Although concentrations of Hg emitted from mine-contaminated soils and mine wastes were elevated, persistent wind in southwest Texas disperses Hg in the air within a few meters of the

  1. Exploiting Stable Mercury Isotopic Analysis to Differentiate between Mercury Sources: Gold Mining vs. Land-Use Change (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergquist, B. A.; Adler Miserendino, R. A.; Guimarães, J. R.; Veiga, M.; Velasquez-López, P.; Lees, P. S.; Thibodeau, A. M.; Fernandez, L. E.

    2013-12-01

    In parts of the developing world, mercury (Hg) is used to extract gold by amalgamation during artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) and this can lead to contamination of downstream aquatic ecosystems. Differentiation between Hg from ASGM and from other sources of Hg, such as increased erosion from land cover and land use change (LCLUC), is challenging and has lead to heated debates over the dominant sources of elevated Hg in some ecosystems. Here, stable Hg isotopic analysis was applied in two aquatic ecosystems in South America: (1) the Amazonian aquatic ecosystem of Amapá, Brazil downstream of artisanal gold mining (AGM) and (2) the Puyango-Tumbes River ecosystem downstream of Portovelo-Zaruma, Ecuador, a large mining area where both AGM and small-scale gold mining (SGM) are in operation. The Hg isotopic analyses from Amapá, Brazil, do not support AGM as the source of elevated Hg in the downstream aquatic ecosystem. Instead, Hg isotopes are most consistent with the elevated Hg being from preferential migration of Hg from soil erosion, which is likely associated with land use change. Although soils are regarded as Hg sinks in the global Hg cycle, this work suggests that LCLUC can disrupt Hg stores with significant ecological consequences. In contrast in the Southwestern Andean region of Ecuador and Peru, analysis of Hg isotopes and other toxic metals (i.e., Pb, Zn, Cu), which are associated with the larger scale mining and cyanide used during SGM, demonstrate Hg used during gold mining is the predominant source of Hg downstream and can be traced far from the dominant mining area. Although it has been speculated that Hg from SGM in Ecuador was not that mobile or that Hg far downstream of SGM processing plants was from erosion due to LCLUC or from AGM taking place downstream, the isotopically heavy signature of Hg used during gold mining and elevated other metal concentrations were observed ~120 km downstream of Portovelo-Zaruma. Mercury isotopes appear

  2. Mercury methylation influenced by areas of past mercury mining in the Terlingua district, Southwest Texas, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gray, John E.; Hines, Mark E.; Biester, Harald

    2006-01-01

    Speciation and microbial transformation of Hg was studied in mine waste from abandoned Hg mines in SW Texas to evaluate the potential for methyl-Hg production and degradation in mine wastes. In mine waste samples, total Hg, ionic Hg 2+ , Hg 0 , methyl-Hg, organic C, and total S concentrations were measured, various Hg compounds were identified using thermal desorption pyrolysis, and potential rates of Hg methylation and methyl-Hg demethylation were determined using isotopic-tracer methods. These data are the first reported for Hg mines in this region. Total Hg and methyl-Hg concentrations were also determined in stream sediment collected downstream from two of the mines to evaluate transport of Hg and methylation in surrounding ecosystems. Mine waste contains total Hg and methyl-Hg concentrations as high as 19,000 μg/g and 1500 ng/g, respectively, which are among the highest concentrations reported at Hg mines worldwide. Pyrolysis analyses show that mine waste contains variable amounts of cinnabar, metacinnabar, Hg 0 , and Hg sorbed onto particles. Methyl-Hg concentrations in mine waste correlate positively with ionic Hg 2+ , organic C, and total S, which are geochemical parameters that influence processes of Hg cycling and methylation. Net methylation rates were as high as 11,000 ng/g/day, indicating significant microbial Hg methylation at some sites, especially in samples collected inside retorts. Microbially-mediated methyl-Hg demethylation was also observed in many samples, but where both methylation and demethylation were found, the potential rate of methylation was faster. Total Hg concentrations in stream sediment samples were generally below the probable effect concentration of 1.06 μg/g, the Hg concentration above which harmful effects are likely to be observed in sediment dwelling organisms; whereas total Hg concentrations in mine waste samples were found to exceed this concentration, although this is a sediment quality guideline and is not directly

  3. Mercury concentrations and distribution in soil, water, mine waste leachates, and air in and around mercury mines in the Big Bend region, Texas, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, John E.; Theodorakos, Peter M.; Fey, David L.; Krabbenhoft, David P.

    2015-01-01

    Samples of soil, water, mine waste leachates, soil gas, and air were collected from areas mined for mercury (Hg) and baseline sites in the Big Bend area, Texas, to evaluate potential Hg contamination in the region. Soil samples collected within 300 m of an inactive Hg mine contained elevated Hg concentrations (3.8–11 µg/g), which were considerably higher than Hg in soil collected from baseline sites (0.03–0.05 µg/g) distal (as much as 24 km) from mines. Only three soil samples collected within 300 m of the mine exceeded the probable effect concentration for Hg of 1.06 µg/g, above which harmful effects are likely to be observed in sediment-dwelling organisms. Concentrations of Hg in mine water runoff (7.9–14 ng/L) were generally higher than those found in springs and wells (0.05–3.1 ng/L), baseline streams (1.1–9.7 ng/L), and sources of drinking water (0.63–9.1 ng/L) collected in the Big Bend region. Concentrations of Hg in all water samples collected in this study were considerably below the 2,000 ng/L drinking water Hg guideline and the 770 ng/L guideline recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to protect aquatic wildlife from chronic effects of Hg. Concentrations of Hg in water leachates obtained from leaching of mine wastes varied widely from wastes were elevated, persistent wind in southwest Texas disperses Hg in the air within a few meters of the ground surface.

  4. Use of mercury in the small mining and the implications for the environment and the health

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hennig, Walther

    2004-01-01

    In the auriferous small and handmade mining, the use of mercury for the amalgamation of minerals and concentrated auriferous it is universally extended. This is attributed to the supposedly easy handling that doesn't require of special technical knowledge, at the relatively low cost of the mercury with relationship to the mineral value and the readiness of included mercury in the most remote regions. Of those more than 3.000 annual t of mercury that arrive of the most diverse sources (E.g. 1.500 t of central thermal of coal and incinerator plants of garbage) to the environment, single 500 t approximately corresponds the auriferous mining, but in form of high local concentrations. Exams carried out in 72 companies of gold mining and silver they checked in around 15% of the employees an excessive exhibition of mercury, in some cases with values 50 times that the allowed. The main roads for which the mercury used in the gold extraction, arrives to the environment, are relicts of mineral preparation and mercury vapors that arise in the distillation open of amalgam without retort. The consumption of mercury, that is to say the losses to the environment, depending on the mineral type and of the applied preparation methods, they reach of some little grams for ton of mineral treaty up to 2 kg Hg / mineral t. Be which is the way for which the mercury arrives to the environment, it is absorbed by the plants and animals and it is integrated in the foods chain. Animals that are at the end of the foods chain, for E j fish, demonstrate the highest concentrations. The mercury possesses a high neurotoxic potential, it concentrates on the neurons and it blocks the transport of signs there and nutritious. Polluted people with mercury assimilate with more easiness another toxic environmental matter, since the mercury impedes to the cell of defending in front of her, allowing this way that heavy metals, pesticides and formaldehydes penetrate the cell. In their vaporous physical state

  5. Methane Oxidation and Molecular Characterization of Methanotrophs from a Former Mercury Mine Impoundment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaun M. Baesman

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The Herman Pit, once a mercury mine, is an impoundment located in an active geothermal area. Its acidic waters are permeated by hundreds of gas seeps. One seep was sampled and found to be composed of mostly CO2 with some CH4 present. The δ13CH4 value suggested a complex origin for the methane: i.e., a thermogenic component plus a biological methanogenic portion. The relatively 12C-enriched CO2 suggested a reworking of the ebullitive methane by methanotrophic bacteria. Therefore, we tested bottom sediments for their ability to consume methane by conducting aerobic incubations of slurried materials. Methane was removed from the headspace of live slurries, and subsequent additions of methane resulted in faster removal rates. This activity could be transferred to an artificial, acidic medium, indicating the presence of acidophilic or acid-tolerant methanotrophs, the latter reinforced by the observation of maximum activity at pH = 4.5 with incubated slurries. A successful extraction of sterol and hopanoid lipids characteristic of methanotrophs was achieved, and their abundances greatly increased with increased sediment methane consumption. DNA extracted from methane-oxidizing enrichment cultures was amplified and sequenced for pmoA genes that aligned with methanotrophic members of the Gammaproteobacteria. An enrichment culture was established that grew in an acidic (pH 4.5 medium via methane oxidation.

  6. Methane oxidation and molecular characterization of methanotrophs from a former mercury mine impoundment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baesman, Shaun; Miller, Laurence G.; Wei, Jeremy H.; Cho, Yirang; Matys, Emily D.; Summons, Roger E.; Welander, Paula V.; Oremland, Ronald S.

    2015-01-01

    The Herman Pit, once a mercury mine, is an impoundment located in an active geothermal area. Its acidic waters are permeated by hundreds of gas seeps. One seep was sampled and found to be composed of mostly CO2 with some CH4 present. The δ13CH4 value suggested a complex origin for the methane: i.e., a thermogenic component plus a biological methanogenic portion. The relatively 12C-enriched CO2 suggested a reworking of the ebullitive methane by methanotrophic bacteria. Therefore, we tested bottom sediments for their ability to consume methane by conducting aerobic incubations of slurried materials. Methane was removed from the headspace of live slurries, and subsequent additions of methane resulted in faster removal rates. This activity could be transferred to an artificial, acidic medium, indicating the presence of acidophilic or acid-tolerant methanotrophs, the latter reinforced by the observation of maximum activity at pH = 4.5 with incubated slurries. A successful extraction of sterol and hopanoid lipids characteristic of methanotrophs was achieved, and their abundances greatly increased with increased sediment methane consumption. DNA extracted from methane-oxidizing enrichment cultures was amplified and sequenced for pmoA genes that aligned with methanotrophic members of the Gammaproteobacteria. An enrichment culture was established that grew in an acidic (pH 4.5) medium via methane oxidation.

  7. Forest ecosystem and mining activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Badrinath, S.D.; Chakraborty, A.; Khan, S.

    1994-01-01

    The Indian sub-continent has a tremendous diversity of plant and animal species. About 80,000 species of animals and 15,000 species of flowering plants have so far been described from India. Profound changes have taken place in this era, the changes driven by an unprecedented level of human demands for the resources. One major crisis is the loss of biological diversity. Tropical moist forest tracts harbouring the bulk of this diversity is of main concern. Many countries largely from tropical belts have been identified as megadiversity countries, for biodiversity conservation. India is one of them. Conserving India's heritage of biodiversity is a great challenge, with large biomass needs of its huge rural population and exploding resource demands of its growing urban-industrial-intensive agricultural sector. One such major impact on the biological diversity is mining. Main environmental problems of mining are deforestation, land damage, visual intrusion, and disturbance of hydrological systems. Opencast mining, specially with multi-seam or steep deposits involves creation of external overburden dumps which destroys further lands and causes visual intrusion. The present paper highlights a few case studies carried out to understand the biological environmental impact assessment due to mining activity and also discusses the management plan for eco-restoration of the mined areas and degraded lands. 3 refs., 4 figs., 4 tabs

  8. Gold mining in the Peruvian Amazon: global prices, deforestation, and mercury imports.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer J Swenson

    Full Text Available Many factors such as poverty, ineffective institutions and environmental regulations may prevent developing countries from managing how natural resources are extracted to meet a strong market demand. Extraction for some resources has reached such proportions that evidence is measurable from space. We present recent evidence of the global demand for a single commodity and the ecosystem destruction resulting from commodity extraction, recorded by satellites for one of the most biodiverse areas of the world. We find that since 2003, recent mining deforestation in Madre de Dios, Peru is increasing nonlinearly alongside a constant annual rate of increase in international gold price (∼18%/yr. We detect that the new pattern of mining deforestation (1915 ha/year, 2006-2009 is outpacing that of nearby settlement deforestation. We show that gold price is linked with exponential increases in Peruvian national mercury imports over time (R(2 = 0.93, p = 0.04, 2003-2009. Given the past rates of increase we predict that mercury imports may more than double for 2011 (∼500 t/year. Virtually all of Peru's mercury imports are used in artisanal gold mining. Much of the mining increase is unregulated/artisanal in nature, lacking environmental impact analysis or miner education. As a result, large quantities of mercury are being released into the atmosphere, sediments and waterways. Other developing countries endowed with gold deposits are likely experiencing similar environmental destruction in response to recent record high gold prices. The increasing availability of satellite imagery ought to evoke further studies linking economic variables with land use and cover changes on the ground.

  9. Gold mining in the Peruvian Amazon: global prices, deforestation, and mercury imports.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swenson, Jennifer J; Carter, Catherine E; Domec, Jean-Christophe; Delgado, Cesar I

    2011-04-19

    Many factors such as poverty, ineffective institutions and environmental regulations may prevent developing countries from managing how natural resources are extracted to meet a strong market demand. Extraction for some resources has reached such proportions that evidence is measurable from space. We present recent evidence of the global demand for a single commodity and the ecosystem destruction resulting from commodity extraction, recorded by satellites for one of the most biodiverse areas of the world. We find that since 2003, recent mining deforestation in Madre de Dios, Peru is increasing nonlinearly alongside a constant annual rate of increase in international gold price (∼18%/yr). We detect that the new pattern of mining deforestation (1915 ha/year, 2006-2009) is outpacing that of nearby settlement deforestation. We show that gold price is linked with exponential increases in Peruvian national mercury imports over time (R(2) = 0.93, p = 0.04, 2003-2009). Given the past rates of increase we predict that mercury imports may more than double for 2011 (∼500 t/year). Virtually all of Peru's mercury imports are used in artisanal gold mining. Much of the mining increase is unregulated/artisanal in nature, lacking environmental impact analysis or miner education. As a result, large quantities of mercury are being released into the atmosphere, sediments and waterways. Other developing countries endowed with gold deposits are likely experiencing similar environmental destruction in response to recent record high gold prices. The increasing availability of satellite imagery ought to evoke further studies linking economic variables with land use and cover changes on the ground.

  10. Selection of Mercury Accumulator Plants for Gold Mine Tailing Contaminated Soils

    OpenAIRE

    Muddarisna, N; Krisnayanti, B D

    2015-01-01

    Phytoremediation, which is more efficient with less side effects than conventional physical and chemical methods, is increasing in popularity as a remediation system. This paper provides a brief overview of developments in research and application of phytoremediation of soil contaminated with gold mine tailings containing mercury. Lindernia crustacea L., Digitaria radicosa Presl. Miq., Zingiber purpurium L, Paspalum conjugatum Berg., Cyperus kyllingia Endl., and Caladium bicolor Vent., that w...

  11. Presence of artisanal gold mining predicts mercury bioaccumulation in five genera of bats (Chiroptera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Anjali; Divoll, Timothy J; Ganguli, Priya M; Trama, Florencia A; Lamborg, Carl H

    2018-05-01

    Mercury, a toxic trace metal, has been used extensively as an inexpensive and readily available method of extracting gold from fine-grained sediment. Worldwide, artisanal mining is responsible for one third of all mercury released into the environment. By testing bat hair from museum specimens and field collected samples from areas both impacted and unimpacted by artisanal gold mining in Perú, we show monomethylmercury (MMHg) has increased in the last 100 years. MMHg concentrations were also greatest in the highest bat trophic level (insectivores), and in areas experiencing extractive artisanal mining. Reproductive female bats had higher MMHg concentrations, and both juvenile and adult bats from mercury contaminated sites had more MMHg than those from uncontaminated sites. Bats have important ecological functions, providing vital ecosystem services such as pollination, seed dispersal, and insect control. Natural populations can act as environmental sentinels and offer the chance to expand our understanding of, and responses to, environmental and human health concerns. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Accumulation of total mercury and methylmercury in rice plants collected from different mining areas in China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meng, Mei; Li, Bing; Shao, Jun-juan; Wang, Thanh; He, Bin; Shi, Jian-bo; Ye, Zhi-hong; Jiang, Gui-bin

    2014-01-01

    A total of 155 rice plants were collected from ten mining areas in three provinces of China (Hunan, Guizhou and Guangdong), where most of mercury (Hg) mining takes place in China. During the harvest season, whole rice plants were sampled and divided into root, stalk and leaf, husk and seed (brown rice), together with soil from root zone. Although the degree of Hg contamination varied significantly among different mining areas, rice seed showed the highest ability for methylmercury (MeHg) accumulation. Both concentrations of total mercury (THg) and MeHg in rice plants were significantly correlated with Hg levels in soil, indicating soil is still an important source for both inorganic mercury (IHg) and MeHg in rice plants. The obvious discrepancy between the distribution patterns of THg and MeHg reflected different pathways of IHg and MeHg accumulation. Water soluble Hg may play more important role in MeHg accumulation in rice plants. -- Highlights: • Distribution patterns indicated different pathways of IHg and MeHg accumulation. • Soil is an important source for both THg and MeHg to rice plants. • Water soluble Hg may play more important role in MeHg accumulation in rice plants. -- The distribution patterns indicate different pathways of IHg and MeHg accumulation in rice plants

  13. A cross-sectional survey on knowledge and perceptions of health risks associated with arsenic and mercury contamination from artisanal gold mining in Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, Elias; Thomas, Deborah S K; Dewey, Deborah; Davey, Mark; Ngallaba, Sospatro E; Konje, Eveline

    2013-01-25

    An estimated 0.5 to 1.5 million informal miners, of whom 30-50% are women, rely on artisanal mining for their livelihood in Tanzania. Mercury, used in the processing gold ore, and arsenic, which is a constituent of some ores, are common occupational exposures that frequently result in widespread environmental contamination. Frequently, the mining activities are conducted haphazardly without regard for environmental, occupational, or community exposure. The primary objective of this study was to assess community risk knowledge and perception of potential mercury and arsenic toxicity and/or exposure from artisanal gold mining in Rwamagasa in northwestern Tanzania. A cross-sectional survey of respondents in five sub-villages in the Rwamagasa Village located in Geita District in northwestern Tanzania near Lake Victoria was conducted. This area has a history of artisanal gold mining and many of the population continue to work as miners. Using a clustered random selection approach for recruitment, a total of 160 individuals over 18 years of age completed a structured interview. The interviews revealed wide variations in knowledge and risk perceptions concerning mercury and arsenic exposure, with 40.6% (n=65) and 89.4% (n=143) not aware of the health effects of mercury and arsenic exposure respectively. Males were significantly more knowledgeable (n=59, 36.9%) than females (n=36, 22.5%) with regard to mercury (x²=3.99, pmining (n=63, 73.2%) were more knowledgeable about the negative health effects of mercury than individuals in other occupations. Of the few individuals (n=17, 10.6%) who knew about arsenic toxicity, the majority (n=10, 58.8%) were miners. The knowledge of individuals living in Rwamagasa, Tanzania, an area with a history of artisanal gold mining, varied widely with regard to the health hazards of mercury and arsenic. In these communities there was limited awareness of the threats to health associated with exposure to mercury and arsenic. This lack of

  14. Senegalese artisanal gold mining leads to elevated total mercury and methylmercury concentrations in soils, sediments, and rivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacqueline R. Gerson

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The largest source of global mercury (Hg anthropogenic inputs to the environment is derived from artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM activities in developing countries. While our understanding of global Hg emissions from ASGM is growing, there is limited empirical documentation about the levels of total mercury (THg and methylmercury (MeHg contamination near ASGM sites. We measured THg and MeHg concentrations in soil (n = 119, sediment (n = 22, and water (n = 25 from four active ASGM villages and one non-ASGM reference village in Senegal, West Africa. Nearly all samples had THg and MeHg concentrations that exceeded the reference village concentrations and USEPA regulatory standards. The highest median THg concentrations were found in huts where mercury-gold amalgams were burned (7.5 μg/g, while the highest median MeHg concentrations and percent Hg as MeHg were found in river sediments (4.2 ng/g, 0.41%. Median river water concentrations of THg and MeHg were also elevated compared to values at the reference site (22 ng THg/L, 0.037 ng MeHg/L in ASGM sites. This study provides direct evidence that Hg from ASGM is entering both the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems where it is converted in soils, sediment, and water to the neurotoxic and bioavailable form of MeHg.

  15. Mercury and Methylmercury Related to Historical Mercury Mining in Three Major Tributaries to Lake Berryessa, Upper Putah Creek Watershed, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparks, G. C.; Alpers, C. N.; Horner, T. C.; Cornwell, K.; Izzo, V.

    2016-12-01

    The relative contributions of total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) from upstream historical mercury (Hg) mining districts were examined in the three largest tributaries to Lake Berryessa, a reservoir with water quality impaired by Hg. A fish consumption advisory has been issued for the reservoir; also, in a study of piscivorous birds at 25 California reservoirs, blood samples from Lake Berryessa grebes had the highest THg concentration state-wide. The third and fourth largest historical Hg-producing mining districts in California are within the study area. These mining districts are located within the Pope Creek, Upper Putah Creek, and Knoxville-Eticuera Creeks watersheds. Downstream of the reservoir, Lower Putah Creek drains into the Yolo Bypass, a major source of THg and MeHg to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Study objectives included: (1) determining if tributaries downstream of historical Hg mining districts and draining to the reservoir are continuing sources of THg and MeHg; (2) characterizing variability of water and streambed sediment parameters in upstream and downstream reaches of each creek; and (3) estimating loads of suspended sediment, THg, and MeHg entering the reservoir from each tributary. Water samples were collected from October 2012 to September 2014 during non-storm and storm events along each tributary and analyzed for general water quality field parameters; unfiltered THg and MeHg; total suspended solids; and total particulate matter. Discharge measurements were made at the time of sample collection; flow and concentration data were combined to compute daily loads. To determine spatial variability, 135 streambed sediment samples were analyzed for THg, organic content (loss on ignition), and grain-size distribution. All three tributaries contribute THg and MeHg to the reservoir. Some consistent spatial trends in THg (water) concentrations were observed over multiple sampling events; THg (water) decreased from upstream to downstream

  16. Mercury emission and distribution: Potential environmental risks at a small-scale gold mining operation, Phichit Province, Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pataranawat, Poranee; Parkpian, Preeda; Polprasert, Chongrak; Delaune, R D; Jugsujinda, A

    2007-07-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination was assessed in environment near an amalgamation gold recovery operation located at a small scale mining operation (Phanom Pha) in Phichit Province, Thailand. Total mercury (THg) concentrations was determined in water, sediment, bivalves in the aquatic environment and as dry deposition or atmospheric fallout on surface soil and leaves of Neem tree (Azadirachta indica Juss. var. siamensis Valeton) near the mining operation. THg in surface soil, Neem flowers (edible part) and rice grain in surrounding terrestrial habitat and with distance from the mining area were also evaluated for possible contamination. Potential environmental risks were evaluated using the hazard quotient equation. Hg analyses conducted in the aquatic habitat showed that THg in water, sediment and bivalves (Scabies cripata Gould) ranged from 0.4 to 4 microg L(-1), 96 to 402 microg kg(-1)dry weight (dw) and 15 to 584 microg kg(-1) wet weight (ww), respectively. High concentrations of THg in water, sediment and bivalves were observed in the receiving stream near the mining operation which was located near the Khao Chet Luk Reservoir. Whereas the THg concentration in water, sediment and bivalves from monitoring stations outside the gold mining operation (upstream and downstream), were considerably lower with the values of 0.4-0.8 microg L(-1), 96-140 microg kg(-1) dw and 88-658 microg kg(-1) dw, respectively. The elevated concentration of Hg found in the sediment near the mining operation was consistent with Hg accumulation measured in bivalves. The elevated Hg levels found in living bivalves collected from highly contaminated sites suggested that the sediment bound Hg was bioavailable. THg in surface soils, brown rice grain (Jasmine rice #105) and Neem flowers of terrestrial habitats were in the range of 16 to 180 microg kg(-1) dw, 190 to 300 microg kg(-1) dw, and 622 to 2150 microg kg(-1) dw, respectively. Elevated concentrations of mercury were found in Neem flowers

  17. Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercury is an element that is found in air, water and soil. It has several forms. Metallic mercury is a shiny, silver-white, odorless liquid. If ... with other elements to form powders or crystals. Mercury is in many products. Metallic mercury is used ...

  18. Mercury bioaccumulation on tadpoles of a gold mining zone in Dagua River, Buenaventura, Valle del Cauca, Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hernandez Cordoba, Oscar Dario; Castro Herrera, Fernando; Paez Melo, Martha

    2013-01-01

    Amphibians, particularly larval stages, are strongly sensitive to pollutants, so they have become useful indicators to assess how different human activities affect ecosystems. In this way, tadpoles were used as bioindicators in the Medio Dagua zone, in Zaragoza town, where mining has released pollutants into the Dagua River (mostly heavy metals). Using spectrophotometry by cold vapor atomic absorption, we measured total mercury concentrations in tadpoles of five species, with a sediment sample for each animal sample as an environment reference. the study was realized in two areas with different intervention levels, we report mercury concentration ranges from 0.07 to 0.24 ?g/g for high impact zone and from 0.07 to 0.17?g/g for unknown impact zone, these levels do not exceed set limits used by local environmental authorities, however, is evident that bioaccumulation processes are developing in the area because organisms concentrations were always higher than those of the environment, in fact, significantly different (mw utest, p = 0.001) therefore we propose the implementation of biomonitoring and bioremediation programs in the area, taking in consideration that tadpoles species used here, were mainly first order consumers, and when their mercury concentrations are incorporated into the food chain, these contaminant loads will produce biomagnification processes.

  19. Mercury at the Oat Hill Extension Mine and James Creek, Napa County, California: Tailings, Sediment, Water, and Biota, 2003-2004

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slowey, Aaron J.; Rytuba, James J.; Hothem, Roger L.; May, Jason T.

    2007-01-01

    Executive Summary The Oat Hill Extension (OHE) Mine is one of several mercury mines located in the James Creek/Pope Creek watershed that produced mercury from the 1870's until 1944 (U.S. Bureau of Mines, 1965). The OHE Mine developed veins and mineralized fault zones hosted in sandstone that extended eastward from the Oat Hill Mine. Waste material from the Oat Hill Mine was reprocessed at the OHE Mine using gravity separation methods to obtain cinnabar concentrates that were processed in a retort. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management requested that the U.S. Geological Survey measure and characterize mercury and other chemical constituents that are potentially relevant to ecological impairment of biota in tailings, sediment, and water at the OHE Mine and in the tributaries of James Creek that drain the mine area (termed Drainage A and B) (Figs. 1 and 2). This report summarizes such data obtained from sampling of tailings and sediments at the OHE on October 17, 2003; water, sediment, and biota from James Creek on May 20, 2004; and biota on October 29, 2004. These data are interpreted to provide a preliminary assessment of the potential ecological impact of the mine on the James Creek watershed. The mine tailings are unusual in that they have not been roasted and contain relatively high concentrations of mercury (400 to 1200 ppm) compared to unroasted waste rock at other mines. These tailings have contaminated a tributary to James Creek with mercury primarily by erosion, on the basis of higher concentration of mercury (780 ng/L) measured in unfiltered (total mercury, HgT) spring water flowing from the OHE to James Creek compared to 5 to 14 ng/L HgT measured in James Creek itself. Tailing piles (presumably from past Oat Hill mine dumping) near the USBLM property boundary and upstream of the main OHE mine drainage channel (Drainage A; Fig. 2) also likely emit mercury, on the basis of their mercury composition (930 to 1200 ppm). The OHE spring water is likely an

  20. Mercury and other Mining-Related Contaminants in Ospreys along the Upper Clark Fork River, MT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langner, H.; Domenech, R.; Greene, E.; Staats, M. F.

    2010-12-01

    Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) are widely recognized as bio-indicators of the health of aquatic ecosystems. Until the time of fledging, nestlings feed exclusively on fish caught within a few kilometers of the nest. Therefore, tissues of these young birds may reflect the level of contamination of local fish and more generally, the contamination status of the aquatic ecosystem they inhabit. Nests can often be accessed with a boom truck and obtaining small blood samples from the flightless chicks is fairly noninvasive. Ospreys are nesting along the Upper Clark Fork River, Montana, which is heavily contaminated with wastes left from a century of copper and precious metals mining. We have been monitoring the levels of priority pollutants (arsenic, cadmium, lead, copper, zinc, mercury and selenium) in Osprey chicks along a 250 km section of the river for four years. Objectives are to establish current contaminant status, pinpoint pollution hotspots, and assess the success of restoration efforts. Our results suggest that of highest concern may be the bioaccumulation of mercury with blood levels of up to 0.7 mg/L in the growing chicks. These concentrations are expected to increase many fold upon fledging as feather growth stops, which acts as the major sink for mercury. Interestingly, we found mercury levels increased in downstream direction, in contrast to concentrations of other pollutants. Reasons may be the different origin of mercury versus other contaminants and the distribution of wetlands where mercury can be transformed into highly bioavailable methylmercury. Blood levels of selenium are also elevated throughout the Upper Clark Fork River drainage. We discuss the implications for restoration and remediation of the Clark Fork River.

  1. Determination of mercury in dentists through Neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Padilla M, M.A.; Granados C, F.

    1999-01-01

    It was determined the mercury levels in urine through Neutron activation analysis to 25 dentists who have been exposed to mercury by several time periods, because of the routine manipulations of amalgams. The determined concentrations of mercury were less to 10 μ g Hg/l of urine. The results were founded inside the safety limits reported in the literature. The mercury levels in the dentists are associated with a wide variety of factors that contribute to their exposure as: number of years of dental practice, number of amalgams manipulated between others. (Author)

  2. Tailings From Mining Activities, Impact on Groundwater, and Remediation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khalid Al-Rawahy

    2001-12-01

    Full Text Available Effluent wastes from mining operations and beneficiation processes are comprized mostly of the following pollutants: total suspended solids (TTS, alkalinity or acidity (pH, settleable solids, iron in ferrous mining, and dissolved metals in nonferrous mining. Suspended solids consist of small particles of solid pollutants that resist separation by conventional means. A number of dissolved metals are considered toxic pollutants. The major metal pollutants present in ore mining and beneficiation waste waters include arsenic, cadmium, copper, lead, mercury, nickel, and zinc. Tailings ponds are used for both the disposal of solid waste and the treatment of waste-water streams. The supernatant decanted from these ponds contains suspended solids and, at times, process reagents introduced to the water during ore beneficiation. Leakage of material from tailings pond into groundwater is one possible source of water pollution in the mining industry. Percolation of waste-water from impoundment may occur if tailings ponds are not properly designed. This paper addresses potential groundwater pollution due to effluent from mining activities, and the possible remediation options.

  3. Mining and mining authorities in Saarland 2016. Mining economy, mining technology, occupational safety, environmental protection, statistics, mining authority activities. Annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2016-01-01

    The annual report of the Saarland Upper Mining Authority provides an insight into the activities of mining authorities. Especially, the development of the black coal mining, safety and technology of mining as well as the correlation between mining and environment are stressed.

  4. Mercury pollution from the artisanal mining in Yani gold district, Northern Bolivia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alfonso, Pura; Freixas, Anna; Bascompta, Marc; María Aranibar, Ana; Villegas, Karla; María García-Noguero, Eva; Higueras, Pablo; Cielito Saraiva, Angela

    2016-04-01

    Artisanal gold mining is the main economic activity in the Yani district, Northern Bolivia. In this area abundant orogenic gold deposits constituted by quartz veins hosted in paleozoic turbiditic series that contain either free gold or associated with pyrite. Gold is recovered in processing plants by gravimetric methods using shaking tables in several communities of this district. Previously, miners ground the mineral in ball mills together with mercury. The present study aims to evaluate the effect of mercury used in the gold recovering process to the environment and human health in the Yani district. The assessment was based on the analysis of human hair, sediments and water from the river nearby the processing plant and drinking water from the fountain that supplies these communities. 47 samples of hair from miners and other people from the Yani and Señor de Mayo communities were obtained in 2014 and 52 samples in 2015. All were analysed to evaluate the mercury exposure in these places. The results from the 2014 sampling show a wide range of Hg concentration in hair, especially in Señor de Mayo, with values up to 136 μg/g THg. However, in 2015 among the 43 residents in Señor de Mayo, 29 (67%) exhibit concentrations higher than 2 μg/g THg, with an average value of 5.36 μg/g THg. On the other hand, in Yani only 40% have concentrations above 2 μg/g THg, with an average value of 2.34 μg/g THg. The content in Hg in most of the hair samples exhibit values above the tolerable limits established by the US Environmental Protection Agency (1 μg/g Hg) and the World Health Organisation (WHO, 2 μg/g Hg). These high Hg concentrations are found not only in miners but also in the other members of the community, in spite of low fish consumption in this area. Part of the hair was analysed before and after cleaning. Usually in the second case the content of Hg is reduced, but still show high Hg levels, then probably the atmosphere is polluted with Hg and population is

  5. Mercury mass measurement in fluorescent lamps via neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Viererbl, L.; Vinš, M.; Lahodová, Z.; Fuksa, A.; Kučera, J.; Koleška, M.; Voljanskij, A.

    2015-01-01

    Mercury is an essential component of fluorescent lamps. Not all fluorescent lamps are recycled, resulting in contamination of the environment with toxic mercury, making measurement of the mercury mass used in fluorescent lamps important. Mercury mass measurement of lamps via instrumental neutron activation analysis (NAA) was tested under various conditions in the LVR-15 research reactor. Fluorescent lamps were irradiated in different positions in vertical irradiation channels and a horizontal channel in neutron fields with total fluence rates from 3×10 8 cm −2 s −1 to 10 14 cm −2 s −1 . The 202 Hg(n,γ) 203 Hg nuclear reaction was used for mercury mass evaluation. Activities of 203 Hg and others induced radionuclides were measured via gamma spectrometry with an HPGe detector at various times after irradiation. Standards containing an Hg 2 Cl 2 compound were used to determine mercury mass. Problems arise from the presence of elements with a large effective cross section in luminescent material (europium, antimony and gadolinium) and glass (boron). The paper describes optimization of the NAA procedure in the LVR-15 research reactor with particular attention to influence of neutron self-absorption in fluorescent lamps. - Highlights: • Mercury is an essential component of fluorescent lamps. • Fluorescent lamps were irradiated in neutron fields in research reactor. • 203 Hg induced radionuclide activity was measured using gamma spectrometry. • Mercury mass in fluorescent lamps can be measured by neutron activation analysis.

  6. Selection of mercury accumulator plants for gold mine tailing contaminated soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N Muddarisna

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Phytoremediation, which is more efficient with less side effects than conventional physical and chemical methods, is increasing in popularity as a remediation system. This paper provides a brief overview of developments in research and application of phytoremediation of soil contaminated with gold mine tailings containing mercury. Lindernia crustacea L., Digitaria radicosa Presl. Miq., Zingiber purpurium L, Paspalum conjugatum Berg., Cyperus kyllingia Endl., and Caladium bicolor Vent., that were selected for this study were planted in the planting media consisting of soil (70% and tailings (30% for 9 weeks. The results showed that after 9 weeks of planting, Paspalum conjugatum had growth rate, biomass production, Hg accumulation, and ratio of shoot Hg : root Hg higher than those of other plant species tested, both in the media consisted of amalgamation and cyanidation tailings. It can thus be concluded that Paspalum conjugatum is potential plant species for remediating mercury-contaminated soil.

  7. Global Burden of Disease of Mercury Used in Artisanal Small-Scale Gold Mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steckling, Nadine; Tobollik, Myriam; Plass, Dietrich; Hornberg, Claudia; Ericson, Bret; Fuller, Richard; Bose-O'Reilly, Stephan

    Artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is the world's largest anthropogenic source of mercury emission. Gold miners are highly exposed to metallic mercury and suffer occupational mercury intoxication. The global disease burden as a result of this exposure is largely unknown because the informal character of ASGM restricts the availability of reliable data. To estimate the prevalence of occupational mercury intoxication and the disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) attributable to chronic metallic mercury vapor intoxication (CMMVI) among ASGM gold miners globally and in selected countries. Estimates of the number of artisanal small-scale gold (ASG) miners were extracted from reviews supplemented by a literature search. Prevalence of moderate CMMVI among miners was determined by compiling a dataset of available studies that assessed frequency of intoxication in gold miners using a standardized diagnostic tool and biomonitoring data on mercury in urine. Severe cases of CMMVI were not included because it was assumed that these persons can no longer be employed as miners. Cases in workers' families and communities were not considered. Years lived with disability as a result of CMMVI among ASG miners were quantified by multiplying the number of prevalent cases of CMMVI by the appropriate disability weight. No deaths are expected to result from CMMVI and therefore years of life lost were not calculated. Disease burden was calculated by multiplying the prevalence rate with the number of miners for each country and the disability weight. Sensitivity analyses were performed using different assumptions on the number of miners and the intoxication prevalence rate. Globally, 14-19 million workers are employed as ASG miners. Based on human biomonitoring data, between 25% and 33% of these miners-3.3-6.5 million miners globally-suffer from moderate CMMVI. The resulting global burden of disease is estimated to range from 1.22 (uncertainty interval [UI] 0.87-1.61) to 2.39 (UI 1

  8. Mercury

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Vries, Irma

    2017-01-01

    Mercury is a naturally occurring metal that exists in several physical and chemical forms. Inorganic mercury refers to compounds formed after the combining of mercury with elements such as chlorine, sulfur, or oxygen. After combining with carbon by covalent linkage, the compounds formed are called

  9. Distribuição e especiação de mercúrio em sedimentos de áreas de garimpo de ouro do quadrilátero ferrífero (MG Distribution and speciation of mercury in sediments from gold mining sites in iron quadrangle (Minas Gerais

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cláudia Carvalhinho Windmöller

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available The concentration and thermodesorption speciation of mercury in sediments from four different Iron Quadrangle sites impacted by gold mining activity were determined. The mercury content of some samples was considerably high (ranging from 0.04 to 1.1 µg g-1. Only Hg2+ was found and it was preferably distributed in the silt/clay fraction in all samples. Cluster analysis showed that mercury and manganese can be associated. The occurrence of cinnabar in this region as another mercury source was also discussed, corroborating earlier works showing the importance of natural mercury in the geochemical cycle of the metal in this region.

  10. Detection of uranium mining activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maiorov, V.; Ryjinski, M.; Bragin, V.

    2001-01-01

    In undisturbed natural uranium ore the 238 U decay chain isotopes appear in secular decay equilibrium with activity ratios equal to one. In the course of ore processing the bulk of the uranium decay products is separated from the uranium product and concentrated in the tails. Therefore the disturbed activity ratios of short-lived daughters to long-lived parents can be indicators of ore processing. Using 234 Th and 238 U activities (the short-lived daughter with T 1/2 =24.1 days and the long- lived parent respectively) one can roughly estimate how much time has elapsed since ore processing occurred. Equilibrium is reached in about three months after processing and the 234 Th and 238 U activity levels are approximately equal (taking into account the error of measurements). Higher or lower 234 Th activity levels, relative to 238 U, indicate the material has been recently processed. Assuming the product is depleted in Th and the tails are enriched, the activity of 234 Th in fresh product should be lower than 238 U and higher in fresh tails. The 234 Th/ 230 Th activity ratio can also be used for age estimations ( 230 Th is a long-lived nuclide). Five samples were taken from the Ranger Uranium Mine and Concentration Plant in Australia, and one sample was taken from the Jabiluka mine (10 km far from the Ranger Mine). The samples included non-processed ore, coarse ore from the stockpile, final crushed ore, fresh and old tails, and fresh product (U 3 O 8 ). All the samples were analyzed by HRGS to measure the activities of gamma emitting nuclides. XRF and IDMS were used to measure uranium content and isotopic composition. The 238 U activity was calculated from these measurement results. The 234 Th activity was measured by HRGS with a planar HPGe detector and a calibrated low activity 241 Am solution as an internal standard. The 234 Th/ 230 Th activity ratio was measured using the 60 keV energy region where both isotopes have gamma lines. Use of gamma lines with close

  11. Environmental transformation and distribution of mercury released from gold mining and its implications on human health in Tanzania, studied by nuclear techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ikingura, Justinian R.

    2002-01-01

    The dispersion and transformation of mercury in the southwest Lake Victoria gold fields was investigated through field and laboratory studies in order to evaluate the environmental impact and human health risks due to mercury pollution from small-scale gold mining in Tanzania. River sediment, gold-ore tailings, fish, and lichens were analyzed for their mercury content to determine mercury contamination levels. Mercury concentrations in the tailings from Rwamagaza mine were in the range of 165 to 232 mg/kg while at the Mugusu mine the maximum concentration was 6 mg/kg in the river sediment contaminated by the tailings. The dispersion of mercury along the Mabubi River downstream of the gold-ore processing site at the Mugusu mine decreased rapidly to less than 0.5 mg/kg at a distance of 4 km, and less than 0.1 mg/kg at 9 km. Granulometrical analysis of mercury distribution indicated highest mercury concentrations to be associated with the grain size fraction <212 mm in the sediment. Total mercury concentrations in eight fish species from the Lake Victoria at Nungwe Bay were generally very low and varied from 2 to 34, μg/kg (w.w). The lowest concentrations were found in Tilapia and the highest in Nile perch. The percentage of methylmercury in the fish muscle ranged from 65 to 97%. These results suggest that mercury contamination from gold mining operations in the southwest Lake Victoria goldfields has not led to any significant increase in environmental methylmercury levels that could be reflected in high mercury concentrations in the fish. Based on these results, fish consumption from the Nungwe Bay area of the Lake Victoria does not pose any human health risks on account of very low mercury levels in the fish at present. Mercury concentrations in two lichen species, Parmelia and Usnea, in the Geita Forest Reserve around the Mugusu mine ranged from 0.10 to 3.10 μg/g (d.w.). The mercury concentration in the lichens decreased away from the mine village, indicating the

  12. Activation calculation of the EURISOL mercury target

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rapp, B.; David, J.C.; Blideanu, V.; Dore, D.; Ridikas, D.; Thiolliere, N

    2006-08-15

    We have used MCNPX coupled to CINDER to estimate the production of radioactive nuclides in the EURISOL 4 MW liquid mercury target during a 40 years'lifetime of the installation. The calculations have been done with different intra-nuclear cascade and fission evaporation model combinations. A benchmark exercise has allowed a better understanding of differences seen between these models for the creation of tritium and fission products. To obtain a realistic production yield for tritium gas in proton induced spallation reactions, we recommend using the ISABEL-RAL model, while both CEM2k and BERTINI-RAL overestimate the production rate above 1 GeV incident proton. The best combinations of models to calculate the residual nuclei production are those using ABLA fission-evaporation model, CEM2k or combinations using RAL model are giving too broad mass distributions when compared to available data. An extensive list of radio-nuclides was obtained and is available on tabular format, we show that the 4 nuclei whose contributions to the total activity of the mercury target (after 40 years of irradiation) are the most important are the following: -) 1 day after shutdown: Y{sup 91} (15%), Y{sup 90} (13%), Hg{sup 197} (6%) and Sr{sup 89} (5%); -) 1 year after shutdown: H{sup 3} (19%), Y{sup 90} (17%), Sr{sup 90} (17%) and Nb{sup 93*} (10%); -) 10 years after shutdown: Y{sup 90} (22%), Sr{sup 90} (22%), H{sup 3} (18%) and Nb{sup 93*} (14%); and -) 100 years after shutdown: Mo{sup 93} (34%), Nb{sup 93*} (32%), Pt{sup 193} (9%) and Y{sup 90} (8%). (A.C.)

  13. Assessing mercury exposure and effects to American dippers in headwater streams near mining sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henny, Charles J; Kaiser, James L; Packard, Heidi A; Grove, Robert A; Taft, Michael R

    2005-10-01

    To evaluate mercury (Hg) exposure and possible adverse effects of Hg on American dipper (Cinclus mexicanus) reproduction, we collected eggs and nestling feathers and the larval/nymph form of three Orders of aquatic macroinvertebrates (Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera and Trichoptera = EPT) important in their diet from three major headwater tributaries of the upper Willamette River, Oregon in 2002. The Coast Fork Willamette River is contaminated with Hg due to historical cinnabar (HgS) mining at the Black Butte Mine; the Row River is affected by past gold-mining operations located within the Bohemia Mining District, where Hg was used in the amalgamation process to recover gold; and the Middle Fork Willamette River is the reference area with no known mining. Methyl mercury (MeHg) concentrations (geometric mean) in composite EPT larvae (111.9 ng/g dry weight [dw] or 19.8 ng/g wet weight [ww]), dipper eggs (38.5 ng/g ww) and nestling feathers (1158 ng/g ww) collected from the Coast Fork Willamette were significantly higher than MeHg concentrations in EPT and dipper samples from other streams. Total mercury (THg) concentrations in surface sediments along the same Hg-impacted streams were investigated by others in 1999 (Row River tributaries) and 2002 (Coast Fork). The reported sediment THg concentrations paralleled our biological findings. Dipper breeding territories at higher elevations had fewer second clutches; however, dipper reproductive success along all streams (including the lower elevation and most Hg-contaminated Coast Fork), was judged excellent compared to other studies reviewed. Furthermore, MeHg concentrations in EPT samples from this study were well below dietary concentrations in other aquatic bird species, such as loons and ducks, reported to cause Hg-related reproductive problems. Our data suggest that either dipper feathers or EPT composites used to project MeHg concentrations in dipper feathers (with biomagnification factor of 10-20x) may be used, but with

  14. Mercury concentrations in bats (Chiroptera) from a gold mining area in the Peruvian Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno-Brush, Mónica; Portillo, Alejandro; Brändel, Stefan Dominik; Storch, Ilse; Tschapka, Marco; Biester, Harald

    2018-01-01

    In the southeastern Peruvian Amazon, artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is estimated to have released up to 300 tonnes of mercury (Hg) to the environment between 1995 and 2007 alone, and is claimed to be responsible for Hg concentrations above international thresholds for aquatic wildlife species. Here, we examined whether Hg concentrations in bat populations are potentially related to regional ASGM-Hg releases. We determined Hg concentrations in the fur of bats collected at three different distances from the major ASGM areas in Peru. Our findings from 204 individuals of 32 species indicate that Hg concentrations in bat fur mainly resulted from differences in feeding habits, because Hg concentrations were significantly higher in omnivorous bats than in frugivorous bats. At least in two species, populations living in ASGM-affected sites harbored higher Hg concentrations than did populations in unaffected sites. Because Hg concentrations reflect Hg dietary exposure, Hg emissions from amalgam roasting sites appear to deposit locally and enter the terrestrial food web. Although our study demonstrates that ASGM activities (and Hg point sources) increase Hg exposure in wildlife, the overall Hg concentrations reported here are relatively low. The measured Hg concentrations were below the toxicity threshold at which adverse neurological effects have been reported in rodents and mink (>10 µg g -1 ), and were in the range of Hg concentrations in the fur of bats from nonpoint source affected sites in other latitudes. This study emphasizes the importance of considering feeding habits when evaluating Hg concentrations in bats and other vertebrates.

  15. Determination of mercury in food by neutron activation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anand, S.J.S.

    1976-01-01

    Determination of mercury in food samples has been carried out by neutron activation followed by chemical separation to remove the interfering activities of copper, zinc etc. Chemical separation was carried out using anion exchange resin (DOWEX 1x8). Mercury was determined by counting 77 keV γ-rays of 197 Hg on a NaI(Tl) crystal in conjunction with a 400-channel pulse-height analyser. Levels of mercury in the following foods are tabulated: rice, wheat, pulses, millets, leafy vegetables, flower, carrot, potato, tomato, onion, chilli powder, sugar, tea leaves, milk. (T.I.)

  16. Determination of mercury in food by neutron activation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anand, S J.S. [Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Bombay (India). Air Monitoring Section

    1976-01-01

    Determination of mercury in food samples has been carried out by neutron activation followed by chemical separation to remove the interfering activities of copper, zinc etc. Chemical separation was carried out using anion exchange resin (DOWEX 1x8). Mercury was determined by counting 77 keV ..gamma..-rays of /sup 197/Hg on a NaI(Tl) crystal in conjunction with a 400-channel pulse-height analyser. Levels of mercury in the following foods are tabulated: rice, wheat, pulses, millets, leafy vegetables, flower, carrot, potato, tomato, onion, chilli powder, sugar, tea leaves, milk.

  17. Effects of historical and modern mining on mercury deposition in southeastern Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beal, Samuel A; Jackson, Brian P; Kelly, Meredith A; Stroup, Justin S; Landis, Joshua D

    2013-11-19

    Both modern anthropogenic emissions of mercury (Hg), primarily from artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM), and preindustrial anthropogenic emissions from mining are thought to have a large impact on present-day atmospheric Hg deposition. We study the spatial distribution of Hg and its depositional history over the past ∼400 years in sediment cores from lakes located regionally proximal (∼90-150 km) to the largest ASGM in Peru and distal (>400 km) to major preindustrial mining centers. Total Hg concentrations in surface sediments from fourteen lakes are typical of remote regions (10-115 ng g(-1)). Hg fluxes in cores from four lakes demonstrate preindustrial Hg deposition in southeastern Peru was spatially variable and at least an order of magnitude lower than previously reported fluxes in lakes located closer to mining centers. Average modern (A.D. 2000-2011) Hg fluxes in these cores are 3.4-6.9 μg m(-2) a(-1), compared to average preindustrial (A.D. 1800-1850) fluxes of 0.8-2.5 μg m(-2) a(-1). Modern Hg fluxes determined from the four lakes are on average 3.3 (±1.5) times greater than their preindustrial fluxes, similar to those determined in other remote lakes around the world. This agreement suggests that Hg emissions from ASGM are likely not significantly deposited in nearby down-wind regions.

  18. In vitro studies evaluating leaching of mercury from mine waste calcine using simulated human body fluids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, John E.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Morman, Suzette A.; Higueras, Pablo L.; Crock, James G.; Lowers, Heather A.; Witten, Mark L.

    2010-01-01

    In vitro bioaccessibility (IVBA) studies were carried out on samples of mercury (Hg) mine-waste calcine (roasted Hg ore) by leaching with simulated human body fluids. The objective was to estimate potential human exposure to Hg due to inhalation of airborne calcine particulates and hand-to-mouth ingestion of Hg-bearing calcines. Mine waste calcines collected from Hg mines at Almadén, Spain, and Terlingua, Texas, contain Hg sulfide, elemental Hg, and soluble Hg compounds, which constitute primary ore or compounds formed during Hg retorting. Elevated leachate Hg concentrations were found during calcine leaching using a simulated gastric fluid (as much as 6200 μg of Hg leached/g sample). Elevated Hg concentrations were also found in calcine leachates using a simulated lung fluid (as much as 9200 μg of Hg leached/g), serum-based fluid (as much as 1600 μg of Hg leached/g), and water of pH 5 (as much as 880 μg of Hg leached/g). The leaching capacity of Hg is controlled by calcine mineralogy; thus, calcines containing soluble Hg compounds contain higher leachate Hg concentrations. Results indicate that ingestion or inhalation of Hg mine-waste calcine may lead to increased Hg concentrations in the human body, especially through the ingestion pathway.

  19. Removal of mercury from gold mine effluents using Limnocharis flava in constructed wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marrugo-Negrete, José; Enamorado-Montes, Germán; Durango-Hernández, José; Pinedo-Hernández, José; Díez, Sergi

    2017-01-01

    Phytoremediation has received increased attention over the recent decades, as an emerging and eco-friendly approach that utilizes the natural properties of plants to remediate contaminated water, soils or sediments. The current study provides information about a pilot-scale experiment designed to evaluate the potential of the anchored aquatic plant Limnocharis flava for phytoremediation of water contaminated with mercury (Hg), in a constructed wetland (CW) with horizontal subsurface flow (HSSF). Mine effluent used in this experiment was collected from a gold mining area located at the Alacran mine in Colombia (Hg: 0.11 ± 0.03 μg mL -1 ) and spiked with HgNO 3 (1.50 ± 0.09 μg mL -1 ). Over a 30 day test period, the efficiency of the reduction in the heavy metal concentration in the wetlands, and the relative metal sorption by the L. flava, varied according to the exposure time. The continued rate of removal of Hg from the constructed wetland was 9 times higher than the control, demonstrating a better performance and nearly 90% reduction in Hg concentrations in the contaminated water in the presence of L. flava. The results in this present study show the great potential of the aquatic macrophyte L. flava for phytoremediation of Hg from gold mining effluents in constructed wetlands. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Assessing the levels of mercury in selected mining communities in the East Akim Municipality of Ghana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kwateng, I.K.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury concentrations in tailings, soil, sediment and water from one active and one non-active (abandoned) mine site each from Agyapoma, Kibi and Tete Asikam were studied together with water from the Birim River. The concentrations were measured using Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis - a 30 kW tank-in-pool Ghana Research Reactor-1 (GHARR - 1) operating at a thermal flux of 5 x 10 1 1' ns -1 cm -2 . The samples were irradiated and counted without any chemical treatment. Atomic Absorption Spectrometry was used for full analysis of all the water samples to measure the concentrations of Hg, Cd, Pb, Fe, Mn, Cu, Zn, and As. Ultra violet visible spectrophotometer was used to measure the concentrations of SO 4 2- , PO 4 3- and NO 3- . Elevated levels of Hg were found in the tailings at all the active sites which ranged from 3.45-5.09 mg/kg. The non-active sites had concentrations ranging from 0.02-0.24 mg/kg. Soil, sediment and water samples analysed for Hg were below detection limit. The difference in Hg concentrations in tailings from one site to another is significant as it ranged from 0.02-5.09 mg/kg. Levels of mercury in drinking water, soil and sediments were below detection limit. The Birim river and dam water showed a wide range of characteristics in terms of physciochemical parameters and elemental concentrations. The temperature ranged from 26.5-56.7 degrees Celsius with a pH range of 5.85-7.18. The electrical conductivity values were in the range 53.8-192.4 μS/cm and TDS values in the range of 23.2-82.2mg/L. the water samples varied largely in total hardness from 21.95-76.8mg/L. Concentrations of Pb and Fe were all above the guidance values of 0.01 mg/L and 0.3 mg/L respectively. The concentration of Pb ranged from 0.067-0.127 mg/L and that of Fe ranged from 0.653-2.1 mg/L. Arsenic concentrations were also above the WHO guidance values of 0.01 mg/L except for samples from the Birim River. The concentration of SO 4 2- ranges from 7.424-57.26 mg/L which

  1. Mercury Distribution in the Processing of Jatiroto Gold Mine Wonogiri Central Java Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitri Yudiantoro, Dwi; Nurcholis, Muhammad; Sri Sayudi, Dewi; Abdurrachman, Mirzam; Paramita Haty, Intan; Pambudi, Wiryan; Subroborini, Arum

    2017-06-01

    The research area is one of the Wonogiri gold producer. In this region there are nearly 30 gold processing locations. This area has a steep morphology which is part of Mt. Mas. The work of the gold processing is a part time job besides for the local farmer population. To get the gold bearing rocks, are by digging holes manually around Mt. Mas, while gold processing is carried out in their homes. As a result of these activities, then identified the distribution of mercury in the surrounding settlements. Analytical methods used in this study is the measurement mercury content using Hg meter on altered rocks, soil and using XRF (X-Ray Fluorescence) for plant samples. This results of research shows that there are conducted on mercury contents in the altered rocks, soil and plants showed significant mercury contents in altered rocks, soil and plants. This proves that mercury has polluted the environment surrounding residents, both of people living in the hill down on the lower plain areas. The results of this study are expected to be used as reference to help overcome the pollution of the area.

  2. Active methods of mercury removal from flue gases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marczak, Marta; Budzyń, Stanisław; Szczurowski, Jakub; Kogut, Krzysztof; Burmistrz, Piotr

    2018-03-23

    Due to its adverse impact on health, as well as its global distribution, long atmospheric lifetime and propensity for deposition in the aquatic environment and in living tissue, the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) has classified mercury and its compounds as a severe air quality threat. Such widespread presence of mercury in the environment originates from both natural and anthropogenic sources. Global anthropogenic emission of mercury is evaluated at 2000 Mg year -1 . According to the National Centre for Emissions Management (Pol. KOBiZE) report for 2014, Polish annual mercury emissions amount to approximately 10 Mg. Over 90% of mercury emissions in Poland originate from combustion of coal.The purpose of this paper was to understand mercury behaviour during sub-bituminous coal and lignite combustion for flue gas purification in terms of reduction of emissions by active methods. The average mercury content in Polish sub-bituminous coal and lignite was 103.7 and 443.5 μg kg -1 . The concentration of mercury in flue gases emitted into the atmosphere was 5.3 μg m -3 for sub-bituminous coal and 17.5 μg m -3 for lignite. The study analysed six low-cost sorbents with the average achieved efficiency of mercury removal from 30.6 to 92.9% for sub-bituminous coal and 22.8 to 80.3% for lignite combustion. Also, the effect of coke dust grain size was examined for mercury sorptive properties. The fine fraction of coke dust (CD) adsorbed within 243-277 μg Hg kg -1 , while the largest fraction at only 95 μg Hg kg -1 . The CD fraction physical oxidation of Hg in the flue gas, its effectiveness has increased twofold.

  3. Mercury determination in natural waters using neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cagnone, M.; Marques, R.O.

    1994-01-01

    Available as short communication only. An analytical method for quantitative determination of Mercury traces in river and sea water is proposed. The neutron activation method and radiochemical separation of Mercury by developing of C L 4 Hg -2 complex, and their chromatographic separation using anionic exchange resin Dowex 1 X 8 of 400 mesh is used. The quantitative determination is done by gamma spectrometric analysis. The selection limits reached with this method showed that this is an amenable procedure in routine mercury determination in the ppb level, specially useful in the environmental contamination analysis. (author). 3 refs, 2 figs, 1 tab

  4. Mercury uptake and distribution in Lavandula stoechas plants grown in soil from Almadén mining district (Spain).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sierra, M J; Millán, R; Esteban, E

    2009-11-01

    This work studies mercury root uptake by Lavandula stoechas var. Kew Red (lavender) and the distribution of this metal through the plant under greenhouse conditions along three consecutive seasons. Mercury concentration in plant tissues and in the different products obtained from lavender plants (essential oil, toilet water and in lavender tea) was assessed in order to evaluate the possible cultivation of lavender as a profitable alternative land use to mercury mining in the Almadén area once the mine had been closed down. Mercury concentration in useful parts of the plant was low (0.03-0.55 mg kg(-1)). Likewise, the essential oil, toilet water and tea obtained from these plants presented very low mercury levels, below the detection limit of the used equipment (<0.5 microg kg(-1)). In the case of the obtained tea, according to the recommendations given by the World Health Organization, the maximum daily intake of it without intoxication risk would be 85.2l. So, although other sources of mercury intake should also be considered in order to elaborate a complete toxicological risk assessment. Lavender data, obtained under this greenhouse working conditions, shows that lavender cultivation could be an alternative crop in the Almadén area.

  5. Post-depositional behaviour of mercury and arsenic in submarine mine tailings deposited in Buyat Bay, North Sulawesi, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepherd, Thomas; Rumengan, Inneke; Sahami, Ali

    2018-06-01

    The post-depositional geochemical behaviour of mercury and arsenic in submarine mine tailings from the Mesel Gold Mine in Buyat Bay, North Sulawesi, Indonesia was assessed by in situ sampling of tailings porewaters using dialysis arrays and seawater and fish monitoring. Under steady-state conditions one year after cessation of tailings discharge, the calculated arsenic efflux incrementally added 0.8 μg/L of arsenic to the overlying seawater. The mercury efflux across the tailings-seawater interface was negligible. The arsenic and mercury concentration in seawater bottom samples monitored biannually during a 9-year post-closure program were 1.54 μg/L and tailings are geochemically stable. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Mercury exposure and health impacts among individuals in the artisanal and small-scale gold mining community: a comprehensive review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibb, Herman; O'Leary, Keri Grace

    2014-07-01

    Mercury (Hg) is used in gold mining to extract gold from ore by forming "amalgam"-a mixture composed of approximately equal parts mercury and gold. Approximately 15 million people, including approximately 3 million women and children, participate in artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) in developing countries. Thirty-seven percent of global air emissions of Hg are produced by ASGM. The recently adopted Minamata Convention calls for nations to gather health data, train health-care workers, and raise awareness in regard to ASGM activity. The purpose of our review was to evaluate the current literature regarding the health effects of Hg among those working and/or living in or near ASGM communities. We searched PubMed, ScienceDirect, and Google Scholar for studies relating to health effects and biomarkers of Hg exposure in ASGM communities. Articles published from 1990 through December 2012 were evaluated for relevance. Studies reporting health assessments, kidney dysfunction, neurological disorders and symptoms, and immunotoxicity/autoimmune dysfunction in individuals living in or near an ASGM community were identified. More than 60 studies that measured biomarkers of Hg exposure in individuals living in or near ASGM communities were also identified. These studies, conducted in 19 different countries in South America, Asia, and Africa, demonstrated that hair and urine concentrations are well above World Health Organization health guidance values in ASGM communities. ASGM workers and their families are exposed to Hg vapor, and workers, workers' families, and residents of nearby and downstream communities are consuming fish heavily contaminated with methylmercury.

  7. Activity recognition from minimal distinguishing subsequence mining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iqbal, Mohammad; Pao, Hsing-Kuo

    2017-08-01

    Human activity recognition is one of the most important research topics in the era of Internet of Things. To separate different activities given sensory data, we utilize a Minimal Distinguishing Subsequence (MDS) mining approach to efficiently find distinguishing patterns among different activities. We first transform the sensory data into a series of sensor triggering events and operate the MDS mining procedure afterwards. The gap constraints are also considered in the MDS mining. Given the multi-class nature of most activity recognition tasks, we modify the MDS mining approach from a binary case to a multi-class one to fit the need for multiple activity recognition. We also study how to select the best parameter set including the minimal and the maximal support thresholds in finding the MDSs for effective activity recognition. Overall, the prediction accuracy is 86.59% on the van Kasteren dataset which consists of four different activities for recognition.

  8. Mercury mass measurement in fluorescent lamps via neutron activation analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viererbl, L.; Vinš, M.; Lahodová, Z.; Fuksa, A.; Kučera, J.; Koleška, M.; Voljanskij, A.

    2015-11-01

    Mercury is an essential component of fluorescent lamps. Not all fluorescent lamps are recycled, resulting in contamination of the environment with toxic mercury, making measurement of the mercury mass used in fluorescent lamps important. Mercury mass measurement of lamps via instrumental neutron activation analysis (NAA) was tested under various conditions in the LVR-15 research reactor. Fluorescent lamps were irradiated in different positions in vertical irradiation channels and a horizontal channel in neutron fields with total fluence rates from 3×108 cm-2 s-1 to 1014 cm-2 s-1. The 202Hg(n,γ)203Hg nuclear reaction was used for mercury mass evaluation. Activities of 203Hg and others induced radionuclides were measured via gamma spectrometry with an HPGe detector at various times after irradiation. Standards containing an Hg2Cl2 compound were used to determine mercury mass. Problems arise from the presence of elements with a large effective cross section in luminescent material (europium, antimony and gadolinium) and glass (boron). The paper describes optimization of the NAA procedure in the LVR-15 research reactor with particular attention to influence of neutron self-absorption in fluorescent lamps.

  9. Using native epiphytic ferns to estimate the atmospheric mercury levels in a small-scale gold mining area of West Java, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kono, Yuriko; Rahajoe, Joeni S; Hidayati, Nuril; Kodamatani, Hitoshi; Tomiyasu, Takashi

    2012-09-01

    Mercury pollution is caused by artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) operations along the Cikaniki River (West Java, Indonesia). The atmosphere is one of the primary media through which mercury can disperse. In this study, atmospheric mercury levels are estimated using the native epiphytic fern Asplenium nidus complex (A. nidus) as a biomonitor; these estimates shed light on the atmospheric dispersion of mercury released during mining. Samples were collected from 8 sites along the Cikaniki Basin during September-November, 2008 and September-November, 2009. The A. nidus fronds that were attached to tree trunks 1-3m above the ground were collected and measured for total mercury concentration using cold vapor atomic absorption spectrometry (CVAAS) after acid-digestion. The atmospheric mercury was collected using porous gold collectors, and the concentrations were determined using double-amalgam CVAAS. The highest atmospheric mercury concentration, 1.8 × 10(3) ± 1.6 × 10(3) ngm(-3), was observed at the mining hot spot, and the lowest concentration of mercury, 5.6 ± 2.0 ngm(-3), was observed at the remote site from the Cikaniki River in 2009. The mercury concentrations in A. nidus were higher at the mining village (5.4 × 10(3) ± 1.6 × 10(3) ngg(-1)) than at the remote site (70 ± 30 ngg(-1)). The distribution of mercury in A. nidus was similar to that in the atmosphere; a significant correlation was observed between the mercury concentrations in the air and in A. nidus (r=0.895, P<0.001, n=14). The mercury levels in the atmosphere can be estimated from the mercury concentration in A. nidus using a regression equation: log (Hg(A.nidu)/ngg(-1))=0.740 log (Hg(Air)/ngm (-3)) - 1.324. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... that mercuric chloride and methylmercury are possible human carcinogens. top How does mercury affect children? Very young ... billion parts of drinking water (2 ppb). The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has set a maximum ...

  11. Mercury content in wetland rice soil and water of two different seasons at small-scale gold mine processing areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Sugianti

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This study was aimed to identify the impact of small-scale gold processing activities on mercury content in wetland rice soil and water during the rainy and first dry seasons in Central Lombok and West Lombok Districts. The method used for this study was survey method. Measurement of mercury levels in water samples was conducted at Agro Bogor Centre using SNI 6989.77: 2011 methods. The data was collected and processed in a simple statistic presented descriptively, in order to obtain information. Results of the study showed that mercury content soils in the rainy season exceeded the threshold of 0.005 ppm, while in the first dry season the mercury content in soil decreased, but it was still above the threshold value permitted. The contents of mercury in water samples in the rainy season and the first dry season were still at a safe point that was less than 0.05 ppm. The wetland rice soil and water had been polluted with mercury, although the mercury content in the water was still below the threshold, but the accumulation of mercury that could have been absorbed by the plants are of particular concerns. The decrease of mercury content in soil in dry season was due to lack of gold processing activities.

  12. Methods for Investigating Mercury Speciation, Transport, Methylation, and Bioaccumulation in Watersheds Affected by Historical Mining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpers, C. N.; Marvin-DiPasquale, M. C.; Fleck, J.; Ackerman, J. T.; Eagles-Smith, C.; Stewart, A. R.; Windham-Myers, L.

    2016-12-01

    Many watersheds in the western U.S. have mercury (Hg) contamination from historical mining of Hg and precious metals (gold and silver), which were concentrated using Hg amalgamation (mid 1800's to early 1900's). Today, specialized sampling and analytical protocols for characterizing Hg and methylmercury (MeHg) in water, sediment, and biota generate high-quality data to inform management of land, water, and biological resources. Collection of vertically and horizontally integrated water samples in flowing streams and use of a Teflon churn splitter or cone splitter ensure that samples and subsamples are representative. Both dissolved and particulate components of Hg species in water are quantified because each responds to different hydrobiogeochemical processes. Suspended particles trapped on pre-combusted (Hg-free) glass- or quartz-fiber filters are analyzed for total mercury (THg), MeHg, and reactive divalent mercury. Filtrates are analyzed for THg and MeHg to approximate the dissolved fraction. The sum of concentrations in particulate and filtrate fractions represents whole water, equivalent to an unfiltered sample. This approach improves upon analysis of filtered and unfiltered samples and computation of particulate concentration by difference; volume filtered is adjusted based on suspended-sediment concentration to minimize particulate non-detects. Information from bed-sediment sampling is enhanced by sieving into multiple size fractions and determining detailed grain-size distribution. Wet sieving ensures particle disaggregation; sieve water is retained and fines are recovered by centrifugation. Speciation analysis by sequential extraction and examination of heavy mineral concentrates by scanning electron microscopy provide additional information regarding Hg mineralogy and geochemistry. Biomagnification of MeHg in food webs is tracked using phytoplankton, zooplankton, aquatic and emergent vegetation, invertebrates, fish, and birds. Analysis of zooplankton in

  13. An innovative approach to bioremediation of mercury contaminated soils from industrial mining operations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, Damien; Edwards, Grant C; Gustin, Mae S; Care, Andrew; Miller, Matthieu B; Sunna, Anwar

    2017-10-01

    Soils contaminated with mercury (Hg) have proved expensive and logistically difficult to remediate. Research continues into finding suitable environmentally-friendly and efficient ways of achieving this end. Bioremediation is an option, which employs the strategies microorganisms have evolved to deal with Hg. One microbial strategy involves uptake and intracellular volatilisation of mercuric ions, which passively diffuse from the cell and back into the atmosphere. In this work, Pseudomonas veronii cells grown to stationary phase were immobilised in a xanthan gum-based biopolymer via encapsulation. The P. veronii-biopolymer mix was then coated onto natural zeolite granules. Zeolite immobilised cells remained viable for at least 16 weeks stored under ambient room temperature. Furthermore, the immobilised cells were shown to retain both viability and Hg volatilisation functionality after transportation from Australia to the USA, where they were applied to Hg contaminated soil. Maximum flux rates exceeded 10 μg Hg m 2  h -1 from mine tailings (≈7 mg kg -1  Hg with 50% v/v water). This was 4 orders of magnitude above background flux levels. It is envisioned that emitted gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) can be readily captured, and transformed back into metallic Hg, which can then be stored appropriately or recycled. This breaks the Hg cycle, as GEM is no longer translocated back to the atmospheric compartment. The immobilising excipients used in this research overcome many logistical issues with delivery of suitable microbial loads to locations of mercury contamination and presents a facile and inexpensive method of augmenting contaminated sites with selected microbial consortia for bioremediation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Potential application of a semi-quantitative method for mercury determination in soils, sediments and gold mining residues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yallouz, A.V.; Cesar, R.G.; Egler, S.G.

    2008-01-01

    An alternative, low cost method for analyzing mercury in soil, sediment and gold mining residues was developed, optimized and applied to 30 real samples. It is semiquantitative, performed using an acid extraction pretreatment step, followed by mercury reduction and collection in a detecting paper containing cuprous iodide. A complex is formed with characteristic color whose intensity is proportional to mercury concentration in the original sample. The results are reported as range of concentration and the minimum detectable is 100 ng/g. Method quality assurance was performed by comparing results obtained using the alternative method and the Cold Vapor Atomic Absorption Spectrometry techniques. The average results from duplicate analysis by CVAAS were 100% coincident with alternative method results. The method is applicable for screening tests and can be used in regions where a preliminary diagnosis is necessary, at programs of environmental surveillance or by scientists interested in investigating mercury geochemistry. - Semi-quantitative low-cost method for mercury determination in soil, sediments and mining residues

  15. Minimizing the Impact of Mining Activities for Sustainable Mined-Out ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Minimizing the Impact of Mining Activities for Sustainable Mined-Out Area ... sensing and Geographical Information System (GIS) in assessing environmental impact of ... Keywords: Solid mineral, Impact assessment, Mined-out area utilization, ...

  16. Environmental laws for mining activities in Provincia de San Juan (Argentina), gravel mines exploitation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ramirez, M.; Carrascosa, H.

    2007-01-01

    This paper analyses San Juan Province - Argentina prevailing environmental legislation for mining activity and gravel mines. The study focuses the subject from a mining engineering point of view. (author)

  17. Review of samples of water, sediment, tailings, and biota at the Little Bonanza mercury mine, San Luis Obispo County, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rytuba, James J.; Hothem, Roger L.; Goldstein, Daniel N.; Brussee, Brianne E.; May, Jason T.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Objectives The Little Bonanza mercury (Hg) mine, located in San Luis Obispo County, California, is a relatively small mine with, a historical total Hg production of about 1,000 flasks. The mine workings and tailings are located in the headwaters of the previously unnamed west fork of Las Tablas Creek (WF Las Tablas Creek), which flows into the Nacimiento Reservoir. Wasterock and tailings eroded from the Little Bonanza Hg Mine have contributed Hg-enriched mine wastes to the headwaters of WF Las Tablas Creek. The mine is located on Federal land managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), which requested that the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) measure and characterize Hg and other geochemical constituents in tailings, sediment, water, and biota at and downstream from the minesite. This report is in response that request, from the lead agency which is mandated to conduct a Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) - Removal Site Investigation (RSI). The RSI applies to removal of Hg-contaminated mine waste from the Little Bonanza minesite as a means of reducing Hg transport to WF Las Tablas Creek. This report summarizes data obtained from field sampling of mine tailings, wasterock, sediment, water, and biota at the Little Bonanza Mine that was completed on April 6, 2010. Conditions during sampling were dry and no rain had occurred in the watershed for several weeks. Our results permit a preliminary assessment of the mining sources of Hg and associated chemical constituents that could produce elevated levels of monomethyl mercury (MMeHg) in WF Las Tablas Creek and in biota.

  18. Current Mercury Exposure from Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining in Bombana, Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia-Future Significant Health Risks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakakibara, Masayuki; Sera, Koichiro

    2017-02-08

    The rapid expansion of the artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) industry in developing countries has marginalized the local communities in poverty, and resulted in occupational exposure to mercury via the gold extraction process. We investigated the mercury exposure of the mining workers lived inside and outside the mining area. Based on the occupations of the contributors, the hair samples were divided into three subgroups: directly exposed, indirectly exposed, and a control. A total of 81 hair samples were analyzed by particle-induced X-ray emission spectrometry. The median mercury concentration was highest in the hair from the directly exposed group (12.82 μg/g hair) (control group median: 4.8 μg/g hair, p mining area but who are not engaged in mercury-based gold extraction.

  19. Speciation of methylmercury in rice grown from a mercury mining area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li Lu [Department of Environment and Geography, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); Department of Chemistry, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); State Key Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, P.O. Box 2871, Beijing100085 (China); Wang Feiyue, E-mail: wangf@ms.umanitoba.c [Department of Environment and Geography, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); Department of Chemistry, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); Meng Bo [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry, Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 46 Guanshui Road, Guiyang, Guizhou 550002 (China); Lemes, Marcos [Department of Environment and Geography, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); Department of Chemistry, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2 (Canada); Feng Xinbin [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry, Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 46 Guanshui Road, Guiyang, Guizhou 550002 (China); Jiang Guibin [State Key Laboratory of Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, P.O. Box 2871, Beijing100085 (China)

    2010-10-15

    Monomethylmercury (CH{sub 3}Hg{sup +} and its complexes; MeHg hereafter) is a known developmental neurotoxin. Recent studies have shown that rice (Oryza sativa L.) grain grown from mercury (Hg) mining areas may contain elevated MeHg concentrations, raising concerns over the health of local residents who consume rice on a daily basis. An analytical method employing high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) - inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) following enzymatic hydrolysis was developed to analyze the speciation of MeHg in uncooked and cooked white rice grain grown from the vicinity of a Hg mine in China. The results revealed that the MeHg in the uncooked rice is present almost exclusively as CH{sub 3}Hg-L-cysteinate (CH{sub 3}HgCys), a complex that is thought to be responsible for the transfer of MeHg across the blood-brain and placental barriers. Although cooking does not change the total Hg or total MeHg concentration in rice, no CH{sub 3}HgCys is measurable after cooking, suggesting that most, if not all, of the CH{sub 3}HgCys is converted to other forms of MeHg, the identity and toxicity of which remain elusive. - Methylmercury in uncooked rice occurs predominantly as methylmercury-L-cysteinate, which is effectively removed during the cooking process.

  20. Mercury behaviour and C, N, and P biogeochemical cycles during ecological restoration processes of old mining sites in French Guiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couic, Ewan; Grimaldi, Michel; Alphonse, Vanessa; Balland-Bolou-Bi, Clarisse; Livet, Alexandre; Giusti-Miller, Stéphanie; Sarrazin, Max; Bousserrhine, Noureddine

    2018-04-25

    Several decades of gold mining extraction activities in the Amazonian rainforest have caused deforestation and pollution. While ecological rehabilitation is essential for restoring biodiversity and decreasing erosion on deforested lands, few studies note the behaviour or toxicity of trace elements during the rehabilitation process. Our original study focused on the potential use of microbial activity and Hg speciation and compared them with As, Cu, Zn and Cr speciation in assessing the chemical and biological quality of ecological restoration efforts. We sampled two sites in French Guyana 17 years after rehabilitation efforts began. The former site was actively regenerated (R) with the leguminous species Clitoria racemosa and Acacia mangium, and the second site was passively regenerated with spontaneous vegetation (Sv). We also sampled soil from a control site without a history of gold mining (F). We performed microcosm soil experiments for 30 days, where trace element speciation and enzyme activities (i.e., FDA, dehydrogenase, β-glucosidase, urease, alkaline and acid phosphatase) were estimated to characterise the behaviour of trace elements and the soil microbial activity. As bioindicators, the use of soil microbial carbon biomass and soil enzyme activities related to the carbon and phosphorus cycles seems to be relevant for assessing soil quality in rehabilitated and regenerated old mining sites. Our results showed that restoration with leguminous species had a positive effect on soil chemical quality and on soil microbial bioindicators, with activities that tended toward natural non-degraded soil (F). Active restoration processes also had a positive effect on Hg speciation by reducing its mobility. While in Sv we found more exchangeable and soluble mercury, in regenerated sites, Hg was mostly bound to organic matter. These results also suggested that enzyme activities and mercury cycles are sensitive to land restoration and must be considered when evaluating

  1. Mercury

    CERN Document Server

    Mahoney, T J

    2014-01-01

    This gazetteer and atlas on Mercury lists, defines and illustrates every named (as opposed to merely catalogued) object and term as related to Mercury within a single reference work. It contains a glossary of terminology used, an index of all the headwords in the gazetteer, an atlas comprising maps and images with coordinate grids and labels identifying features listed in the gazetteer, and appendix material on the IAU nomenclature system and the transcription systems used for non-roman alphabets. This book is useful for the general reader, writers and editors dealing with astronomical themes, and those astronomers concerned with any aspect of astronomical nomenclature.

  2. Mercury

    CERN Document Server

    Balogh, André; Steiger, Rudolf

    2008-01-01

    Mercury, the planet closest to the Sun, is different in several respects from the other three terrestrial planets. In appearance, it resembles the heavily cratered surface of the Moon, but its density is high, it has a magnetic field and magnetosphere, but no atmosphere or ionosphere. This book reviews the progress made in Mercury studies since the flybys by Mariner 10 in 1974-75, based on the continued research using the Mariner 10 archive, on observations from Earth, and on increasingly realistic models of its interior evolution.

  3. Arsenic and mercury levels in human hairs and nails from gold mining areas in Wassa West District of Ghana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Serfor-Armah, Y.; Samlafo, B.V.; Yeboah, P.O.

    2009-01-01

    Hair and nail samples obtained from inhabitants of Wassa District, a major gold mining area in Ghana, were analysed for arsenic (As) and mercury (Hg) using instrumental neutron activation analysis. The samples were irradiated at a thermal neutron flux of 5 x 10 11 n cm -2 s -1 using the Ghana Research Reactor. Concentration of Hg in the hairs ranged from 1.65 to 20.46 μg/g, which were below World Health Organization (WHO) recommended level of 50.00 μg/g for human hair. Mercury concentration in human nail samples ranged from 0.97 to 31.94 μg/g. Arsenic concentrations in human hairs ranged from 0.07 to 0.95 μg/g, while the levels in nail samples ranged from 0.08 to 3.90 μg/g. Generally, levels of As in the hair were less than WHO recommended value of 1.00 μg/g, however, the levels of As in 5 nail samples (FN 11 , FN 20 , FN 28 , TN 9 and TN 16 ) were above the maximum WHO value of 1.80μg/g. The measurement precision specified by the relative standard deviation was within ± 3 %. The accuracy of determination evaluated by analysing certified standard human reference material GBW 09101 was within ± 4 % of the certified value. The levels of As in hair and nail samples of the experimental group were generally higher as compared to the control subject. Similarly, Hg levels in the hair and nail samples in experimental group were also higher compared to the control subject. However, the levels of the toxic elements determined were all below WHO recommended values. (au)

  4. Environmental transformation and distribution of mercury released from gold mining and its implications on human health in Tanzania, studied by nuclear techniques. Highlights and achievements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ikingura, Justinian R.

    2002-01-01

    Tanzania experienced unprecedented rush for gold mining in late 1980s and early 1990s when a similar gold rush was taking place in Latin America and other developing countries because of good gold market prices. The gold rush in Tanzania was also prompted by the socioeconomic and political transformations that were taking place in the country. The liberalization of mining policy and regulations by the government allowed foreign and local private investment in mining and encouraged small-scale mining and gold trade. Because of the liberalization, thousands of local miners, mostly from rural communities, rushed to gold mining for subsistence income. The use of mercury in gold recovery became widespread in Tanzania as a result of the gold rush. From 1992/93, the Department of Geology of the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM in collaboration with the National Environment Management Council (NEMC) initiated studies to assess the extent of mercury pollution in the country. Further studies on mercury and other heavy metal pollution were undertaken between 1993 and 1997 by UDSM, under a broader project on 'Environmental Aspects of Mining and Industrialization in Tanzania', supported by the Swedish Agency for Research Cooperation with Developing Countries SAREC (Sida/SAREC). The above studies revealed the presence of elevated mercury concentrations in gold-ore tailings and river sediment in several gold mining areas. Studies to evaluate environmental transformation, partition and bioaccumulation of mercury in different environmental matrices and the long-term impact of mercury pollution have not been done. The present research project was initiated to provide scientific database necessary to better understand the environmental behaviour and cycling of mercury in the southwest Lake Victoria goldfields. Such data are necessary in the evaluation of environmental impacts of mercury pollution and in the mitigation of adverse impacts on the ecosystems and human health

  5. Abatement of mercury pollution in the small-scale gold mining industry: restructuring the policy and research agendas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilson, Gavin

    2006-06-01

    This paper critiques contemporary research and policy approaches taken toward the analysis and abatement of mercury pollution in the small-scale gold mining sector. Unmonitored releases of mercury from gold amalgamation have caused considerable environmental contamination and human health complications in rural reaches of sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Asia. Whilst these problems have caught the attention of the scientific community over the past 15-20 years, the research that has since been undertaken has failed to identify appropriate mitigation measures, and has done little to advance understanding of why contamination persists. Moreover, the strategies used to educate operators about the impacts of acute mercury exposure, and the technologies implemented to prevent further pollution, have been marginally effective at best. The mercury pollution problem will not be resolved until governments and donor agencies commit to carrying out research aimed at improving understanding of the dynamics of small scale gold mining communities. Acquisition of this knowledge is the key to designing and implementing appropriate support and abatement measures.

  6. Research on recovery of the soil pollution by mercury in gold mining by Sweet Sorghum in Wonogiri, Central Java, Indonesia

    OpenAIRE

    TAKAHI, Sachiko; PRIJAMBADA, Irfan Dwidya; UTAMI, Desi

    2013-01-01

    Small scale gold mining provides an important source of income for miners in rural communities where economic alternatives are extremely limited. However, it releases mercury which damages the environment and poses risks to those in the nearby community. Phytoremediation is considered as a simple and cost-effective method for the cleanup of heavy metal from contaminated soil. Phytoremediation is a technology that uses plants to degrade, extract, contain or immobilize contaminants from soil an...

  7. Mercury mass measurement in fluorescent lamps via neutron activation analysis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Viererbl, L.; Vinš, M.; Lahodová, Z.; Fuksa, A.; Kučera, Jan; Koleska, M.; Voljanskij, A.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 116, NOV (2015), s. 56-59 ISSN 0969-806X R&D Projects: GA TA ČR TA01010237; GA MŠk LM2011019 Institutional support: RVO:61389005 Keywords : fluorescent lamp * mercury measurement * neutron activation analysis * research reactor Subject RIV: BG - Nuclear , Atomic and Molecular Physics, Colliders Impact factor: 1.207, year: 2015

  8. The Necessity of Public Relations for Sustainable Mining Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyunbock; Ji, Sangwoo

    2015-04-01

    This paper reports research about the necessity of image making for sustainable mine developments in the Republic of Korea. One of the big risks in mining activities is mining area residents opposing mine developments and operations. Analysis of the media reports on disputes between mining companies and residents can determine causes of opposing mine developments, dispute process, and influences of disputes on processes of mining projects. To do this, civil complaints from 2009 to 2012 and 24 media reports since 2000 on opposing mining activities are analyzed. And, to analyze difficulties of mining companies, the survey is conducted to target to mining companies. 57 representatives of mining companies are participated in the survey. The result of analysis cited that the major reasons of anti-mining activities are environmental degradation and reduced agricultural productivity. And specifically because of water pollution (50%), crop damages (33%), and mining dust pollution (21%), communities of mining area are against mine developments and operations. However, 25% of residents have experience of the damage caused by mining activities and the remaining 75% of residents opposing mining activities simply have anxiety about mining pollution. In the past, construction-oriented, environment-unfriendly mining projects had lasted. And while mine reclamation had been postponed in abandoned mines, mining area residents had suffered from mining pollution. So, mining area residents are highly influenced by the prejudice that mining activities are harmful to mining area communities. Current mining projects in South Korea, unlike the past mining activity, focus on minimizing environmental damage and contributing to mining area communities financially. But, in many case of disputes between mining companies and mining area residents, the both cannot reach an agreements because of the negative prejudice. Moreover, some communities categorically refuse any mining activity. On the

  9. A Study on Mercury-Resistant Bacteria Isolated from a Gold Mine in Pongkor Village, Bogor, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    WAHYU IRAWATI

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Mercury is one of the major pollutant in the environment which is highly toxic. Bioremediation strategies using bacteria have been proposed as an attractive alternative because this is effective, less expensive and more efficient to remove mercury. Brevundimonas sp. HgP1 and Brevundimonas sp. HgP2 were two highly mercury resistant bacteria isolated from a gold mine in Pongkor village with MIC of 575 ppm. The purposes of the research were to study the effect of mercury on bacterial growth and morphological changes of bacterial colony and to measure the ability of bacterial isolates to accumulate Hg2+. The growth was monitored by measuring optical density at 600 nm, whereas accumulation of Hg2+ was measured by mercury vaporation unit. This present studies revealed that the addition of 50 and 100 ppm HgCl2 in Brevundimonas sp. HgP1 resulted in the decreasing of growth rate and the elongation of lag phase in 8 and 16 hours, respectively. The addition of HgCl2 also affected morphological appearance of the bacterial colony to black. Brevundimonas sp. HgP1 accumulated Hg2+ up to 1.09 and 2.7 mg/g dry weight of cells and removed 64.38 and 57.10% Hg2+ from the medium containing 50 and 100 ppm HgCl2, respectively.

  10. Active mines in Arizona - 1993. Directory 40

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Phillips, K.A.; Niemuth, N.J.; Bain, D.R.

    1992-01-01

    A directory of the active mines in Arizona is presented. The directory was compiled in November, 1992 from field visits and information received by the Department's technical staff. For the purpose of this directory, an active mine is defined as a mine in continuous operation, either in production or under full-time development for production. Custom milling operations that are active or available on a full-time basis are also included in the directory. It is acknowledged that there are additional mines not listed that are in an exploration, evaluation, or part-time development phase. There are others where production is on an intermittent basis that are not listed. The report is dependent on the cooperation of government agencies, private industry, and individuals who voluntarily provide information on their projects and activities. The directory is arranged alphabetically by company name. Each listing includes corporate addresses, mine name and location, operation description, and key personnel. The listing for the sand and gravel operations include name, address, and phone number

  11. Reducing Mercury Pollution from Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining

    Science.gov (United States)

    To reduce airborne mercury emissions from these Gold Shops, EPA and the Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) have partnered to design a low cost, easily constructible technology called the Gold Shop Mercury Capture System (MCS).

  12. Mercury isotope fractionation during ore retorting in the Almadén mining district, Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, John E.; Pribil, Michael J.; Higueras, Pablo L.

    2013-01-01

    Almadén, Spain, is the world's largest mercury (Hg) mining district, which has produced over 250,000 metric tons of Hg representing about 30% of the historical Hg produced worldwide. The objective of this study was to measure Hg isotopic compositions of cinnabar ore, mine waste calcine (retorted ore), elemental Hg (Hg0(L)), and elemental Hg gas (Hg0(g)), to evaluate potential Hg isotopic fractionation. Almadén cinnabar ore δ202Hg varied from − 0.92 to 0.15‰ (mean of − 0.56‰, σ = 0.35‰, n = 7), whereas calcine was isotopically heavier and δ202Hg ranged from − 0.03‰ to 1.01‰ (mean of 0.43‰, σ = 0.44‰, n = 8). The average δ202Hg enrichment of 0.99‰ between cinnabar ore and calcines generated during ore retorting indicated Hg isotopic mass dependent fractionation (MDF). Mass independent fractionation (MIF) was not observed in any of the samples in this study. Laboratory retorting experiments of cinnabar also were carried out to evaluate Hg isotopic fractionation of products generated during retorting such as calcine, Hg0(L), and Hg0(g). Calcine and Hg0(L) generated during these retorting experiments showed an enrichment in δ202Hg of as much as 1.90‰ and 0.67‰, respectively, compared to the original cinnabar ore. The δ202Hg for Hg0(g) generated during the retorting experiments was as much as 1.16‰ isotopically lighter compared to cinnabar, thus, when cinnabar ore was roasted, the resultant calcines formed were isotopically heavier, whereas the Hg0(g) generated was isotopically lighter in Hg isotopes.

  13. Mercury Inhibits Soil Enzyme Activity in a Lower Concentration than the Guideline Value.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahbub, Khandaker Rayhan; Krishnan, Kannan; Megharaj, Mallavarapu; Naidu, Ravi

    2016-01-01

    Three soil types - neutral, alkaline and acidic were experimentally contaminated with nine different concentrations of inorganic mercury (0, 5, 10, 50, 100, 150, 200, 250, 300 mg/kg) to derive effective concentrations of mercury that exert toxicity on soil quality. Bioavailability of mercury in terms of water solubility was lower in acidic soil with higher organic carbon. Dehydrogenase enzyme activity and nitrification rate were chosen as indicators to assess soil quality. Inorganic mercury significantly inhibited (p mercury contents (EC10) were found to be less than the available safe limits for inorganic mercury which demonstrated inadequacy of existing guideline values.

  14. Mercury uptake and phytotoxicity in terrestrial plants grown naturally in the Gumuskoy (Kutahya) mining area, Turkey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasmaz, Merve; Akgül, Bunyamin; Yıldırım, Derya; Sasmaz, Ahmet

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated mercury (Hg) uptake and transport from the soil to different plant parts by documenting the distribution and accumulation of Hg in the roots and shoots of 12 terrestrial plant species, all of which grow naturally in surface soils of the Gumuskoy Pb-Ag mining area. Plant samples and their associated soils were collected and analyzed for Hg content by ICP-MS. Mean Hg values in the soils, roots, and shoots of all plants were 6.914, 460, and 206 µg kg(-1), respectively and lower than 1. The mean enrichment factors for the roots (ECR) and shoots (ECS) of these plants were 0.06 and 0.09, respectively and lower than 1. These results show that the roots of the studied plants prevented Hg from reaching the aerial parts of the plants. The mean translocation factor (TLF) was 1.29 and higher than 1. The mean TLF values indicated that all 12 plant species had the ability to transfer Hg from the roots to the shoots but that transfer was more efficient in plants with higher ECR and ECS. Therefore, these plants could be useful for the biomonitoring of environmental pollution and for rehabilitating areas contaminated by Hg.

  15. Mercury in Some Lakes of Gold Mining Area of the Southern Ural

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatsy Y. G.

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The mercury content in bottom sediments of Kalkan Lake, of the Uchala district, the Southern Ural. It was assumed that high concentrations of mercury in fish due to pollution of bottom sediments as a result of amalgamation at developing of gold placers. Detailed study of distribution of different elements in sediments show close association Hg with the chalcophylic elements, whose anomalies do not have technogenic nature. Association of mercury with the elements-companions of gold placers is evidence of basic contribution of natural mercury to its anomalous accumulation in sediments and fish. This is result of steady long-term natural mercury pollution.

  16. Feasibility of mercury removal from simulated flue gas by activated chars made from poultry manures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Increased emphasis on reduction of mercury emissions from coal fired electric power plants has resulted in environmental regulations that may in the future require application of activated carbons as mercury sorbents for mercury removal. At the same time, the quantity of poultry manure generated eac...

  17. Study on the reduction of atmospheric mercury emissions from mine waste enriched soils through native grass cover in the Mt. Amiata region of Italy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fantozzi, L., E-mail: l.fantozzi@iia.cnr.it [CNR-Institute of Atmospheric Pollution Research, c/o: UNICAL-Polifunzionale, 87036 Rende (Italy); Ferrara, R., E-mail: romano.ferrara@pi.ibf.cnr.it [CNR-Institute of Biophysics, San Cataldo Research Area, Via G. Moruzzi 1, 56124 Pisa (Italy); Dini, F., E-mail: fdiniprotisti@gmail.com [University of Pisa, Department of Biology, Via A. Volta 4, 56126 Pisa (Italy); Tamburello, L., E-mail: ltamburello@biologia.unipi.it [University of Pisa, Department of Biology, Via Derna 1, I-56126 Pisa (Italy); Pirrone, N.; Sprovieri, F. [CNR-Institute of Atmospheric Pollution Research, c/o: UNICAL-Polifunzionale, 87036 Rende (Italy)

    2013-08-15

    Atmospheric mercury emissions from mine-waste enriched soils were measured in order to compare the mercury fluxes of bare soils with those from other soils covered by native grasses. Our research was conducted near Mt. Amiata in central Italy, an area that was one of the largest and most productive mining centers in Europe up into the 1980s. To determine in situ mercury emissions, we used a Plexiglas flux chamber connected to a portable mercury analyzer (Lumex RA-915+). This allowed us to detect, in real time, the mercury vapor in the air, and to correlate this with the meteorological parameters that we examined (solar radiation, soil temperature, and humidity). The highest mercury flux values (8000 ng m{sup −2} h{sup −1}) were observed on bare soils during the hours of maximum insulation, while lower values (250 ng m{sup −2} h{sup −1}) were observed on soils covered by native grasses. Our results indicate that two main environmental variables affect mercury emission: solar radiation intensity and soil temperature. The presence of native vegetation, which can shield soil surfaces from incident light, reduced mercury emissions, a result that we attribute to a drop in the efficiency of mercury photoreduction processes rather than to decreases in soil temperature. This finding is consistent with decreases in mercury flux values down to 3500 ng m{sup −2} h{sup −1}, which occurred under cloudy conditions despite high soil temperatures. Moreover, when the soil temperature was 28 °C and the vegetation was removed from the experimental site, mercury emissions increased almost four-fold. This increase occurred almost immediately after the grasses were cut, and was approximately eight-fold after 20 h. Thus, this study demonstrates that enhancing wild vegetation cover could be an inexpensive and effective approach in fostering a natural, self-renewing reduction of mercury emissions from mercury-contaminated soils. -- Highlights: ► Mercury air/surface exchange

  18. Study on the reduction of atmospheric mercury emissions from mine waste enriched soils through native grass cover in the Mt. Amiata region of Italy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fantozzi, L.; Ferrara, R.; Dini, F.; Tamburello, L.; Pirrone, N.; Sprovieri, F.

    2013-01-01

    Atmospheric mercury emissions from mine-waste enriched soils were measured in order to compare the mercury fluxes of bare soils with those from other soils covered by native grasses. Our research was conducted near Mt. Amiata in central Italy, an area that was one of the largest and most productive mining centers in Europe up into the 1980s. To determine in situ mercury emissions, we used a Plexiglas flux chamber connected to a portable mercury analyzer (Lumex RA-915+). This allowed us to detect, in real time, the mercury vapor in the air, and to correlate this with the meteorological parameters that we examined (solar radiation, soil temperature, and humidity). The highest mercury flux values (8000 ng m −2 h −1 ) were observed on bare soils during the hours of maximum insulation, while lower values (250 ng m −2 h −1 ) were observed on soils covered by native grasses. Our results indicate that two main environmental variables affect mercury emission: solar radiation intensity and soil temperature. The presence of native vegetation, which can shield soil surfaces from incident light, reduced mercury emissions, a result that we attribute to a drop in the efficiency of mercury photoreduction processes rather than to decreases in soil temperature. This finding is consistent with decreases in mercury flux values down to 3500 ng m −2 h −1 , which occurred under cloudy conditions despite high soil temperatures. Moreover, when the soil temperature was 28 °C and the vegetation was removed from the experimental site, mercury emissions increased almost four-fold. This increase occurred almost immediately after the grasses were cut, and was approximately eight-fold after 20 h. Thus, this study demonstrates that enhancing wild vegetation cover could be an inexpensive and effective approach in fostering a natural, self-renewing reduction of mercury emissions from mercury-contaminated soils. -- Highlights: ► Mercury air/surface exchange from grass covered soil is

  19. Determination of mercury in biologycal samples by radiochemical neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suc, N.V.

    1989-01-01

    The radiochemical neutron activation analysis was applied to determine contents of mercury in biological samples. Samples were digested in mixing of H 2 SO 4 and HNO 3 acid. After extraction of mercury by Ni-Ditiodietylphosphoric acid in carbontetrachloride, mercury was back extracted by 5% KI solution. Contents of mercury from five samples of fish was determined by this method. The accuracy of the method was checked by comparing it with NBS standard samples and results are good agreement

  20. Manganese and Mercury Levels in Water, Sediments, and Children Living Near Gold-Mining Areas of the Nangaritza River Basin, Ecuadorian Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Merizalde, Max V; Menezes-Filho, José A; Cruz-Erazo, Claudia Teresa; Bermeo-Flores, Santos Amable; Sánchez-Castillo, María Obdulia; Hernández-Bonilla, David; Mora, Abrahan

    2016-08-01

    Artisanal and small-scale gold-mining activities performed in mountain areas of the Southern Ecuadorian Amazon have incorporated several heavy metals into the aquatic systems, thus increasing the risk of exposure in populations living in adjacent zones. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the contamination levels of mercury (Hg) and manganese (Mn) in several rivers of the Nangaritza River basin and assess the exposure in school-aged children residing near the gold-mining zones. River water and sediment samples were collected from a highly contaminated (HEx) and a moderately contaminated (MEx) zones. Hair Mn (MnH) and urinary Hg (HgU) levels were determined in school-aged children living in both zones. High concentrations of dissolved Mn were found in river waters of the HEx zone (between 2660 and 3990 µg l(-1)); however, Hg levels, in general, were lower than the detection limit (DL; MnH in children of the HEx and MEx zones were 5.5 and 3.4 µg g(-1), respectively, whereas the median values of HgU concentrations in children living in the HEx and MEx zones were 4.4 and 0.62 µg g-creat(-1), respectively. Statistically significant differences were observed between both biomarkers in children from the HEx and MEx zones. In addition, boys presented significantly greater MnH levels in both zones. The greater MnH values were found in children living in alluvial areas, whereas children living in the high mountain areas, where some ore-processing plants are located close to or inside houses and schools, had the greater HgU concentrations. In summary, the data reported in this paper highlights that artisanal and small-scale gold-mining activities can not only produce mercurial contamination, that can also release other heavy metals (such as Mn) that may pose a risk to human health.

  1. Mercury and gold concentrations of highly polluted environmental samples determined using prompt gamma-ray analysis and instrument neutron activation analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osawa, Takahito; Hatsukawa, Yuichi; Appel, Peter W. U.; Matsue, Hideaki

    2011-04-01

    The authors have established a method of determining mercury and gold in severely polluted environmental samples using prompt gamma-ray analysis (PGA) and instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). Since large amounts of mercury are constantly being released into the environment by small-scale gold mining in many developing countries, the mercury concentration in tailings and water has to be determined to mitigate environmental pollution. Cold-vapor atomic absorption analysis, the most pervasive method of mercury analysis, is not suitable because tailings and water around mining facilities have extremely high mercury concentrations. On the other hand, PGA can determine high mercury concentrations in polluted samples as it has an appropriate level of sensitivity. Moreover, gold concentrations can be determined sequentially by using INAA after PGA. In conclusion, the analytical procedure established in this work using PGA and INAA is the best way to evaluate the degree of pollution and the tailing resource value. This method will significantly contribute to mitigating problems in the global environment.

  2. Mercury and gold concentrations of highly polluted environmental samples determined using prompt gamma-ray analysis and instrument neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Osawa, Takahito; Hatsukawa, Yuichi; Appel, Peter W.U.; Matsue, Hideaki

    2011-01-01

    The authors have established a method of determining mercury and gold in severely polluted environmental samples using prompt gamma-ray analysis (PGA) and instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). Since large amounts of mercury are constantly being released into the environment by small-scale gold mining in many developing countries, the mercury concentration in tailings and water has to be determined to mitigate environmental pollution. Cold-vapor atomic absorption analysis, the most pervasive method of mercury analysis, is not suitable because tailings and water around mining facilities have extremely high mercury concentrations. On the other hand, PGA can determine high mercury concentrations in polluted samples as it has an appropriate level of sensitivity. Moreover, gold concentrations can be determined sequentially by using INAA after PGA. In conclusion, the analytical procedure established in this work using PGA and INAA is the best way to evaluate the degree of pollution and the tailing resource value. This method will significantly contribute to mitigating problems in the global environment.

  3. Mercury methylation and bacterial activity associated to tropical phytoplankton

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coelho-Souza, Sergio A.; Guimaraes, Jean R.D.; Mauro, Jane B.N.; Miranda, Marcio R.; Azevedo, Sandra M.F.O.

    2006-01-01

    The methylated form of mercury (Hg), methylmercury (MeHg), is one of the most toxic pollutants. Biotic and/or abiotic methylation, often associated to sulfate-reducing bacteria metabolism, occurs in aquatic environments and in many tropical areas, mostly in the periphyton associated to floating macrophyte roots. Data about mercury methylation by phytoplankton are scarce and the aim of this study was to verify the biotic influence in the methylation process in Microcystis aeruginosa and Sineccocystis sp. laboratory strains and in natural populations of phytoplankton from two different aquatic systems, the mesotrophic Ribeirao das Lajes reservoir and hypereutrophic oligohaline Jacarepagua lagoon, Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil. Adapted radiochemical techniques were used to measure sulfate-reduction, mercury methylation and bacterial activity in phytoplankton samples. Methyl- 203 Hg formation from added inorganic 203 Hg and 3 H-Leucine uptake were measured by liquid scintillation as well as sulfate-reduction, estimated as H 2 35 S produced from added Na 2 35 SO 4 . There was no significant difference in low methylation potentials (0.37%) among the two cyanobacterium species studied in laboratory conditions. At Ribeirao das Lajes reservoir, there was no significant difference in methylation, bacterial activity and sulfate-reduction of surface sediment between the sampling points. Methylation in sediments (3-4%) was higher than in phytoplankton (1.5%), the opposite being true for bacterial activity (sediment mean 6.6 against 150.3 nmol gdw -1 h -1 for phytoplankton samples). At Jacarepagua lagoon, an expressive bacterial activity (477.1 x 10 3 nmol gdw -1 h -1 at a concentration of 1000 nM leucine) and sulfate-reduction (∼21% H 2 35 S trapped) associated to phytoplankton (mostly cyanobacteria M. aeruginosa) was observed, but mercury methylation was not detected

  4. Mercury methylation and bacterial activity associated to tropical phytoplankton

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coelho-Souza, Sergio A. [Laboratorio de Tracadores Wolfgang Pfeiffer, SL 62, Instituto de Biofisica Carlos Chagas Filho, Bloco G, Ilha do Fundao, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (IBCCF/UFRJ), RJ, CEP 21949-900 (Brazil); Guimaraes, Jean R.D. [Laboratorio de Tracadores Wolfgang Pfeiffer, SL 62, Instituto de Biofisica Carlos Chagas Filho, Bloco G, Ilha do Fundao, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (IBCCF/UFRJ), RJ, CEP 21949-900 (Brazil)]. E-mail: jeanrdg@biof.ufrj.br; Mauro, Jane B.N. [Laboratorio de Tracadores Wolfgang Pfeiffer, SL 62, Instituto de Biofisica Carlos Chagas Filho, Bloco G, Ilha do Fundao, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (IBCCF/UFRJ), RJ, CEP 21949-900 (Brazil); Miranda, Marcio R. [Laboratorio de Tracadores Wolfgang Pfeiffer, SL 62, Instituto de Biofisica Carlos Chagas Filho, Bloco G, Ilha do Fundao, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (IBCCF/UFRJ), RJ, CEP 21949-900 (Brazil); Azevedo, Sandra M.F.O. [Laboratorio de Ecofisiologia e Toxicologia de Cianobacterias, IBCCF/UFRJ, RJ (Brazil)

    2006-07-01

    The methylated form of mercury (Hg), methylmercury (MeHg), is one of the most toxic pollutants. Biotic and/or abiotic methylation, often associated to sulfate-reducing bacteria metabolism, occurs in aquatic environments and in many tropical areas, mostly in the periphyton associated to floating macrophyte roots. Data about mercury methylation by phytoplankton are scarce and the aim of this study was to verify the biotic influence in the methylation process in Microcystis aeruginosa and Sineccocystis sp. laboratory strains and in natural populations of phytoplankton from two different aquatic systems, the mesotrophic Ribeirao das Lajes reservoir and hypereutrophic oligohaline Jacarepagua lagoon, Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil. Adapted radiochemical techniques were used to measure sulfate-reduction, mercury methylation and bacterial activity in phytoplankton samples. Methyl-{sup 203}Hg formation from added inorganic {sup 203}Hg and {sup 3}H-Leucine uptake were measured by liquid scintillation as well as sulfate-reduction, estimated as H{sub 2} {sup 35}S produced from added Na{sub 2} {sup 35}SO{sub 4}. There was no significant difference in low methylation potentials (0.37%) among the two cyanobacterium species studied in laboratory conditions. At Ribeirao das Lajes reservoir, there was no significant difference in methylation, bacterial activity and sulfate-reduction of surface sediment between the sampling points. Methylation in sediments (3-4%) was higher than in phytoplankton (1.5%), the opposite being true for bacterial activity (sediment mean 6.6 against 150.3 nmol gdw{sup -1} h{sup -1} for phytoplankton samples). At Jacarepagua lagoon, an expressive bacterial activity (477.1 x 10{sup 3} nmol gdw{sup -1} h{sup -1} at a concentration of 1000 nM leucine) and sulfate-reduction ({approx}21% H{sub 2} {sup 35}S trapped) associated to phytoplankton (mostly cyanobacteria M. aeruginosa) was observed, but mercury methylation was not detected.

  5. Evaluation of the water quality related to the acid mine drainage of an abandoned mercury mine (Alaşehir, Turkey).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemici, Unsal

    2008-12-01

    Mobility of metals in water, mine wastes, and stream sediments around the abandoned Alaşehir mercury mine was investigated to evaluate the environmental effects around the area. Mine waters are dominantly acidic with pH values of 2.55 in arid season and 2.70 in wet season and are sulfate rich. Acidity is caused mainly by the oxidation of sulfide minerals. Pyrite is the main acid-producing mineral in the Alaşehir area. Of the major ions, SO(4) shows a notable increase reaching 3981 mg/l, which exceeds the WHO (WHO guidelines for drinking water quality, vol. 2. Health criteria and other supporting information, 1993) and TS (Sular-Içme ve kullanma sulari. Ankara: Türk Standartlari Enstitüsü, 1997) drinking water standard of 250 mg/L. Mine waters have As, Fe, Mn, Ni, and Al with concentrations higher than drinking water standards. Hg concentrations of adit water samples and surface waters draining the mine area are between 0.25 and 0.274 microg/L and are below the WHO (WHO guidelines for drinking water quality, vol. 2. Health criteria and other supporting information, 1993) drinking water standard of 1.0 microg/L. However, the concentrations are above the 0.012 microg/L standard (EPA, Water quality standards. Establishment of numeric criteria for priority toxic pollutants, states' compliance, final rule. Fed. Reg., 40 CFR, Part 131, 57/246, 60847-60916, 1992) used to protect aquatic life. Stream sediment samples have abnormally high values of especially Hg, As, Ni, and Cr metals. Geoaccumulation (Igeo) and pollution index (PI) values are significantly high and denote heavy contamination in stream sediments. The stream sediments derived from the mining area with the surface waters are potentially hazardous to the environment adjacent to the abandoned Hg mine and are in need of remediation.

  6. Field experiences in the prevention of toxic effects for cyanide and mercury in the Mining District of Vetas-California, Santander

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chaparro Garnica, Helkin Claudio Martin

    2004-01-01

    The problem of the mercury and their impact in the health acquired their maximum importance starting from the intoxications of Minamata and Niigata (Japan), because the children that were exposed to the methyl-mercury during their fetal development presented a neurological syndrome and they were born with cerebral paralysis. In Colombia according to the ministry of mines a pound of mercury is used by each pound of obtained gold what can give an idea of the quantity of waste that they take place and that directly they will contaminate the soil, the air and the water. Additionally, they use cyanide, of high to be able to toxic, for the separation process of the fraction of gold whose they discharge they also go to the hydraulic sources. In the human being the white organs of the mercury are the kidneys and the nervous system, causing deterioration that can arrive until the patient's death for renal inadequacy or moderate inability to severe for the caused neurological damages, and in the case of the cyanide whose dose lethal stocking is surpassed in several percentiles by the miners, that same lethality has made them to have him respect and that therefore, single cases accidentals (dogs that they drink water of the saturation tank), or of suicide in human, they have been reported with reference to this toxic that however, it is need to include in the activities of sensitization. In the Mining District of Vetas-California, Department of Santander, Colombia, exists around 25 mines that exploit the gold, there only are not plants, there are also miners handmade called barrileros y/o arrastreros whose benefit involves processes of having amalgamated in development of which it is highly possible the sharp and mainly chronic intoxication for mercury in the exposed population, but additionally in the population not directly related with the productive system because the mercury in its elementary state, or of inorganic salts or of mercurial organic, they can penetrate to the

  7. Mercury accumulation plant Cyrtomium macrophyllum and its potential for phytoremediation of mercury polluted sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xun, Yu; Feng, Liu; Li, Youdan; Dong, Haochen

    2017-12-01

    Cyrtomium macrophyllum naturally grown in 225.73 mg kg -1 of soil mercury in mining area was found to be a potential mercury accumulator plant with the translocation factor of 2.62 and the high mercury concentration of 36.44 mg kg -1 accumulated in its aerial parts. Pot experiments indicated that Cyrtomium macrophyllum could even grow in 500 mg kg -1 of soil mercury with observed inhibition on growth but no obvious toxic effects, and showed excellent mercury accumulation and translocation abilities with both translocation and bioconcentration factors greater than 1 when exposed to 200 mg kg -1 and lower soil mercury, indicating that it could be considered as a great mercury accumulating species. Furthermore, the leaf tissue of Cyrtomium macrophyllum showed high resistance to mercury stress because of both the increased superoxide dismutase activity and the accumulation of glutathione and proline induced by mercury stress, which favorited mercury translocation from the roots to the aerial parts, revealing the possible reason for Cyrtomium macrophyllum to tolerate high concentration of soil mercury. In sum, due to its excellent mercury accumulation and translocation abilities as well as its high resistance to mercury stress, the use of Cyrtomium macrophyllum should be a promising approach to remediating mercury polluted soils. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Dietary human exposure to mercury in two artisanal small-scale gold mining communities of northwestern Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar-Camacho, Carlos; Salas-Moreno, Manuel; Marrugo-Madrid, Siday; Marrugo-Negrete, José; Díez, Sergi

    2017-10-01

    Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is the largest anthropogenic source of mercury pollution worldwide, posing a grave threat to human health. The present study identifies current levels of mercury in the human population from mining areas of the Chocó Department, Colombia, through total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) measurements in human hair. Mercury exposure of the local population was assessed in two towns affected by ASGM and was related to different variables of interest. Concentrations of THg in human hair ranged from 0.06 to 17.54ppm and the mean value for the subjects under study was 2.48ppm. Men had significantly higher levels than women in both towns (3.29ppm vs. 0.77ppm). Fish consumption was related to a marked increase of THg in hair, with mean values close to five times higher in frequent fish consumers (5-7 times/week) than in non-fish consumers (4.80ppm vs. 0.90ppm). A multiple linear regression model was fitted successfully (R=0.671) and reveals that gender, fish consumption and location of residence were significant indicators of Hg levels in hair, while no significant relationship was found for age. Approximately 60% of subjects tested had THg levels that exceeded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reference dose of 1.0ppm, while 25% surpassed that of the World Health Organization (2.2ppm). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Mercury in soil, vegetable and human hair in a typical mining area in China: Implication for human exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Qin; Zhu, Xuemei; Hao, Yaqiong; Yang, Ziliang; Wang, Qi; Fu, Haihui; Yu, Hongjin

    2018-06-01

    Concentrations of total mercury (T-Hg) and methylmercury (MeHg) in soil, vegetables, and human hair were measured in a mercury mining area in central China. T-Hg and MeHg concentrations in soil ranged from 1.53 to 1054.97mg/kg and 0.88 to 46.52μg/kg, respectively. T-Hg concentrations was correlated with total organic carbon (TOC) content (R 2 =0.50, p<0.01) and pH values (R 2 =0.21, p<0.05). A significant linear relationship was observed between MeHg concentrations and the abundance of sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) (R 2 =0.39, p<0.05) in soil. Soil incubation experiments amended with specific microbial stimulants and inhibitors showed that Hg methylation was derived from SRB activity. T-Hg and MeHg concentrations in vegetables were 24.79-781.02μg/kg and 0.01-0.18μg/kg, respectively; levels in the edible parts were significantly higher than in the roots (T-Hg: p<0.05; MeHg: p<0.01). Hg species concentrations in rhizosphere soil were positively correlated to those in vegetables (p<0.01), indicating that soil was an important source of Hg in vegetables. Risk assessment indicated that the consumption of vegetables could result in higher probable daily intake (PDI) of T-Hg than the provisional tolerable daily intake (PTDI) for both adults and children. In contrast, the PDI of MeHg was lower than the reference dose. T-Hg and MeHg concentrations in hair samples ranged from 1.57 to 12.61mg/kg and 0.04 to 0.94mg/kg, respectively, and MeHg concentration in hair positively related to PDI of MeHg via vegetable consumption (R 2 =0.39, p<0.05), suggesting that vegetable may pose health risk to local residents. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  10. Recent mercury contamination from artisanal gold mining on Buru Island, Indonesia – Potential future risks to environmental health and food safety

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Male, Yusthinus Thobias; Reichelt-Brushett, Amanda Jean; Pocock, Matt; Nanlohy, Albert

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • Recent mercury contamination from artisanal gold mining, Buru Island, Indonesia. • Measured dispersal into the marine environment. • Implications for food safety. • Challenges for introducing mercury reduction strategies. -- Abstract: In November 2011 gold was found at Mount Botak, Buru Island, Mollucas Province, Indonesia. Since 2012 mercury has been used to extract the gold requiring large volumes of water and resulting in deposition of mercury into Wamsait River and Kayeli Bay. Total mercury in waste ponds was over 680 mg/kg. In sediments at the mouth of the local river and a small feeder creek >3.00 mg/kg and >7.66 mg/kg respectively. River and bay sediments were proportionately higher in available mercury than elemental mercury and more strongly bound mercuric sulfide compared to that in trommel waste. This preliminary investigation raises concerns about the long term distribution and speciation of mercury. The floodplain is an important agricultural resource, and Mollucas Province is recognised nationally as the centre for Indonesian fish stocks. Challenges for management include communicating the potential future risks to the community and leaders and identifying mechanisms to reduce mercury waste

  11. [Pollution characteristics of antimony, arsenic and mercury in human hair at Xikuangshan antimony mining area and Guiyang City, China].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bi-Jun; Wu, Feng-Chang; Deng, Qiu-Jing; Mo, Chang-Li; Zhu, Jing; Zeng, Li; Fu, Zhi-You; Li, Wen

    2009-03-15

    The concentration levels of antimony, arsenic and mercury in human hair collected from Xikuangshan antimony mining area and Guiyang City were determined by hydride generation-atomic fluorescence spectrometry after having been digested by nitric acid and perchloric acid. The contents of Sb, As and Hg are 15.9, 4.21, 1.79 microg/g in the samples from Xikuangshan antimony mining area and 0.532, 0.280, 0.338 microg/g in the samples from Guiyang City respectively. The contents of Sb, As and Hg in human hair of Xikuangshan antimony area are much higher than those of Guiyang City. The independent-samples t-test shows that there are no marked differences in the contents of Sb and As between male and female hair samples from both Xikuangshan antimony mining area and Guiyang City (p > 0.05), while Hg contents in male hair are apparently higher than those in female hair from Guiyang City (p mining area may significantly affect human health than in the un-mining areas.

  12. Mercury Contamination and Biogeochemical Cycling Associated with the Historic Idrija Mining Area of Slovenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hines, M. E.; Bonzongo, J. J.; Barkay, T.; Horvat, M.; Faganeli, J.

    2001-12-01

    The Idrija Mine is the second largest Hg mine in the world, which operated for 500 years before recently closing. More than five million tons of ore were mined with only 73% recovered. Hg-laden tailings still line the banks. Exhausts from stacks and mineshafts caused elevated levels of airborne Hg, most of which was deposited in the Idrija basin leading to elevated Hg levels in surficial soils. Hg is continually being transported downstream with approximately 1,500 kg per year entering the northern Adriatic Sea 100 km away. Multidisciplinary studies were conducted on samples collected throughout the Idrija and Soca River systems and waters and sediments in the Gulf of Trieste including Hg speciation, Hg transformation activities in sediments and soils, and the presence and expression of bacterial Hg resistance (mer) genes. Total Hg in the Idrija River increased from 300 ng/L with MeHg accounting for about 0.5%. Concentrations decreased downstream, but increased again in the Soca River and in the estuary with MeHg accounting for nearly 1.5% of the total. However, while bacteria upstream of the mine did not contain mer genes, such genes were detected in bacteria collected downstream for nearly 40 km, and these genes were transcribed. Total Hg levels decreased offshore, but values over 30 ng/L were noted in bottom waters. MeHg concentrations in the Gulf were highest in bottom waters. Sediments near the river mouth contained 40 micro-g/g total Hg with MeHg concentrations of about 3 ng/g. Sediments several km into the Gulf contained 50-fold less total Hg but only 10-fold less MeHg that decreased with depth in the sediment. Hg in sediment pore waters varied between 1 and 8 ng/L, with MeHg accounting for about 30%. Hg methylation and MeHg demethylation were active in Gulf sediments with highest activities near the surface. MeHg was degraded by an oxidative pathway with >97% of the C released from MeHg as carbon dioxide. Hg methylation depth profiles resembled profiles of

  13. Contamination by mercury in air of the mining district of San Martin de Loba in Bolivar's Department, Colombia; Contaminacion por mercurio en aire del distrito minero de San Martin de loba en el Departamento de Bolivar, Colombia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Olivero V, J.; Young C, F.; Caballero G, K., E-mail: jolivero@unicartagena.edu.co [Universidad de Cartagena, Facultad de Ciencias Farmaceuticas, Grupo de Quimica Ambiental y Computacional, Calle de la Universidad 36-100, Cartagena de Indias (Colombia)

    2014-06-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a heavy metal, considered a highly toxic pollutant. In its elemental state is volatile, making it easy to transport over long distances through the atmosphere, so that environmental pollution caused by it is a serious problem worldwide. Activities such as gold mining, where metallic Hg is used, have contributed with its global distribution, affecting ecosystems and human health. The aim of this study was to determine the levels of total mercury (T-Hg) in air in gold mining areas in Southern Bolivar, particularly in the mining district of San Martin de Loba, in the municipalities of San Martin de Loba and Barranco de Loba (Mina Santa Cruz), Colombia. In situ analyses were performed by atomic absorption spectroscopy, using a portable Ra-915 + Zeeman mercury analyzer. In Mina Santa Cruz, one of the most important gold mines in Colombia, concentrations of Hg in air ranged between 163.7 ± 6.6 and 40 455 ± 2154 mg/m{sup 3}, while in the urban area of San Martin de Loba varied from 223.6 ± 20.8 to 27 140 ± 212.5 ng/m{sup 3}. In those places where an amalgam burning process was taking place at the time of the measurements, Hg concentrations reached values of 40 455 ± 2154 ng/m{sup 3}. These data imply a severe occupational exposure to Hg for operators and citizens living in cities located near mines. Therefore, it is important to regulate and control the use of Hg in gold mining, avoiding a chronic impact of the metal on the health of people and the environment. (author)

  14. Concentration, distribution, and translocation of mercury and methylmercury in mine-waste, sediment, soil, water, and fish collected near the Abbadia San Salvatore mercury mine, Monte Amiata district, Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rimondi, V.; Gray, J.E.; Costagliola, P.; Vaselli, O.; Lattanzi, P.

    2012-01-01

    The distribution and translocation of mercury (Hg) was studied in the Paglia River ecosystem, located downstream from the inactive Abbadia San Salvatore mine (ASSM). The ASSM is part of the Monte Amiata Hg district, Southern Tuscany, Italy, which was one of the world’s largest Hg districts. Concentrations of Hg and methyl-Hg were determined in mine-waste calcine (retorted ore), sediment, water, soil, and freshwater fish collected from the ASSM and the downstream Paglia River. Concentrations of Hg in calcine samples ranged from 25 to 1500 μg/g, all of which exceeded the industrial soil contamination level for Hg of 5 μg/g used in Italy. Stream and lake sediment samples collected downstream from the ASSM ranged in Hg concentration from 0.26 to 15 μg/g, of which more than 50% exceeded the probable effect concentration for Hg of 1.06 μg/g, the concentration above which harmful effects are likely to be observed in sediment-dwelling organisms. Stream and lake sediment methyl-Hg concentrations showed a significant correlation with TOC indicating considerable methylation and potential bioavailability of Hg. Stream water contained Hg as high as 1400 ng/L, but only one water sample exceeded the 1000 ng/L drinking water Hg standard used in Italy. Concentrations of Hg were elevated in freshwater fish muscle samples and ranged from 0.16 to 1.2 μg/g (wet weight), averaged 0.84 μg/g, and 96% of these exceeded the 0.3 μg/g (methyl-Hg, wet weight) USEPA fish muscle standard recommended to protect human health. Analysis of fish muscle for methyl-Hg confirmed that > 90% of the Hg in these fish is methyl-Hg. Such highly elevated Hg concentrations in fish indicated active methylation, significant bioavailability, and uptake of Hg by fish in the Paglia River ecosystem. Methyl-Hg is highly toxic and the high Hg concentrations in these fish represent a potential pathway of Hg to the human food chain.

  15. The financial assurance of obliteration of mining activity consequences

    OpenAIRE

    Jaroslav Dvořáček

    2004-01-01

    The contribution deals with the financing of the obliteration of the mining activity consequences process which is considered as the general problem of mining industry connected with the mining activity completion. It deals with the existing law solution of this sphere in the Czech Republic and the changes expected. The procedures of the resources ensuring for the mining activity consequences obliteration used in abroad are mentioned here.

  16. Wastes from former mining and milling activities in Tajikistan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mirsaidov, U.M.

    2012-01-01

    This article is devoted to wastes from former mining and milling activities in Tajikistan. Currently, the serious radiological and ecological problems in Tajikistan are uranium mining and milling activities consequences overcoming which intensively developed during the soviet period. After the collapse of USSR, the uranic ores extraction in Tajikistan stopped due to deposit's output completion on the territory of the republic. Remediation of mining and milling activities' sites became the most urgent once all mines were closed.

  17. Microscopy and certification as tools for environmentally benign, mercury-free small-scale gold mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hylander, Lars D; Plath, David

    2006-09-01

    Small-scale gold miners lose annually 500-700 tonnes of mercury when amalgamating gold with mercury and subsequent burning. So far, mercury-free alternatives have been demanding more skill, time, or capital investments and the interest from the miners to reduce the mercury emissions has been limited. Recent development of mercury free methods, an increasing mercury price, and increased awareness of health and environmental damages caused by mercury is changing the attitudes. This trend could be spurred by certification of gold with added value due to clean production methods. Our objectives are to present a method to distinguish gold recovered without using mercury or harmful chemicals such as cyanide. Thereby, this gold could be certified and thus obtain a higher market price. The method is based on inspection of the gold grain surfaces with a light microscope. This method separated natural gold grains from gold recovered by amalgamation or cyanidation. The method also demonstrated different characteristics of gold grains from different gold fields and a basis for a catalogue with photomicrographs of gold grains from different gold fields has been established and partly presented in this article. In conclusion, studies of gold grains with a light microscope and photo documentation is an inexpensive but reliable method to distinguish environment-friendly recovered gold, which could be used for certification to get a higher market price.

  18. Mining and mining authorities in Saarland 2016. Mining economy, mining technology, occupational safety, environmental protection, statistics, mining authority activities. Annual report; Bergbau und Bergbehoerden im Saarland 2016. Bergwirtschaft, Bergtechnik, Arbeitsschutz, Umweltschutz, Statistiken, Taetigkeiten der Bergbehoerden. Jahresbericht

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2016-07-01

    The annual report of the Saarland Upper Mining Authority provides an insight into the activities of mining authorities. Especially, the development of the black coal mining, safety and technology of mining as well as the correlation between mining and environment are stressed.

  19. New technique for quantification of elemental hg in mine wastes and its implications for mercury evasion into the atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jew, A.D.; Kim, C.S.; Rytuba, J.J.; Gustin, M.S.; Brown, Gordon E.

    2011-01-01

    Mercury in the environment is of prime concern to both ecosystem and human health. Determination of the molecular-level speciation of Hg in soils and mine wastes is important for understanding its sequestration, mobility, and availability for methylation. Extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) spectroscopy carried out under ambient P-T conditions has been used in a number of past studies to determine Hg speciation in complex mine wastes and associated soils. However, this approach cannot detect elemental (liquid) mercury in Hg-polluted soils and sediments due to the significant structural disorder of liquid Hg at ambient-temperature. A new sample preparation protocol involving slow cooling through the crystallization temperature of Hg(0) (234 K) results in its transformation to crystalline ??-Hg(0). The presence and proportion of Hg(0), relative to other crystalline Hg-bearing phases, in samples prepared in this way can be quantified by low-temperature (77 K) EXAFS spectroscopy. Using this approach, we have determined the relative concentrations of liquid Hg(0) in Hg mine wastes from several sites in the California Coast Range and have found that they correlate well with measured fluxes of gaseous Hg released during light and dark exposure of the same samples, with higher evasion ratios from samples containing higher concentrations of liquid Hg(0). Two different linear relationships are observed in plots of the ratio of Hg emission under light and dark conditions vs % Hg(0), corresponding to silica-carbonate- and hot springs-type Hg deposits, with the hot springs-type samples exhibiting higher evasion fluxes than silica-carbonate type samples at similar Hg(0) concentrations. Our findings help explain significant differences in Hg evasion data for different mine sites in the California Coast Range. ?? 2011 American Chemical Society.

  20. The dynamics of mercury near Idrija mercury mine, Slovenia: Horizontal and vertical distributions of total, methyl, and ethyl mercury concentrations in soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomiyasu, Takashi; Kodamatani, Hitoshi; Imura, Ryusuke; Matsuyama, Akito; Miyamoto, Junko; Akagi, Hirokatsu; Kocman, David; Kotnik, Jože; Fajon, Vesna; Horvat, Milena

    2017-10-01

    The distributions of the total mercury (T-Hg), methylmercury (MeHg), and ethylmercury (EtHg) concentrations in soil and their relationship to chemical composition of the soil and total organic carbon content (TOC, %) were investigated. Core samples were collected from hill slope on the right and left riverbanks of the Idrija River. Former smelting plant is located on the right bank. The T-Hg average in each of the core samples ranged from 0.25 to 1650 mg kg -1 . The vertical T-Hg variations in the samples from the left bank showed no significant change with depth. Conversely, the T-Hg varied with depth, with the surface, or layers several centimeters from the surface, tending to show the highest values in the samples from the right bank. Since the right and left bank soils have different chemical compositions, different pathways of mercury delivery into soils were suggested. The MeHg and EtHg concentrations ranged from n.d. (not detected) to 444 μg kg -1 and n.d. to 17.4 μg kg -1 , respectively. The vertical variations of MeHg and EtHg were similar to those of TOC, except for the near-surface layers containing TOC greater than 20%. These results suggest that the decomposition of organic matter is closely related to organic mercury formation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Relationship between catalase activity and uptake of elemental mercury by rat brain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eide, I.; Syversen, T.L.M.

    1983-01-01

    Uptake of mercury by brain after intravenous injection of elemental mercury was investigated in the rat. Catalase activity was inhibited by aminotriazole either by intraperitoneal affecting catalase in most tissues of the animal or by intraventricular injections affecting catalase in the brain selectively. Uptake of elemental mercury by rat brain was not influenced by intraperitoneal administration of aminotriazole resulting in 50% inhibition of brain catalase. However, when the inhibitor was injected intraventricularly in concentrations to give a 50% inhibition of brain catalase, it was shown that the mercury uptake by brain was significantly decreased. In the latter case when only brain catalase was inhibited and the supply of elemtal mercury to brain was maintained, mercury uptake by brain was proportional to the activity of catalase in brain tissue and to the injected amount of elemental mercury. Contrary to the intraventricular injection of aminotriazole, in animals recieving aminotriazole intraperitoneally prior to elemental mercury injection, we suggest that the lower activity of brain catalse is compensated by an increased supply of elemtal mercury caused by the generally lower oxidation rate in the animal. This view is supported by the finding that mercury uptake by liver increased due to aminotriazole intraperitoneally although activity of catalase was depressed. (author)

  2. Radiological characterization of a uranium mine with no mining activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lozano, J.C.; Vera Tome, F.; Gomez Escobar, V.; Blanco Rodriguez, P.

    2000-01-01

    We report a radiological study of a uranium mine located in Extremadura, in the south-west of Spain, in which mining work had ceased. One interest in the work is that the results can be used as a reference for the future evaluation of the effects produced by the restoration program. The radiological parameters selected to estimate the impact of the inactive mine were: 222 Rn in air and water, 222 Rn exhalation, effective 226 Ra in soils and sediments, and natural uranium and 226 Ra in water. Chemical analyses of water samples and measurements of meteorological variables were also made. Average values of these radiological parameters are presented. We characterize the zone radiologically and estimate the influence of the mine on the basis of some of these parameters, while others are used to reflect the status of the installation, information which could be very useful in the near future when restoration is complete

  3. Huerta del Rey: Edafic Characterization of a Historic Area of the Mercury Mining and Study of the Transfer of Mercury from the Soil to Plantago Major

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suarez, C.; Manero, L.; Sierra, M. J.; Rodriguez-Alonso, M.; Millan, R.

    2013-01-01

    The main objective of this scientific-technical report is to carry out a characterization of study plot called Huerta del Rey in the mercury (Hg) mining district of Almaden. For this goal, an edaphic characterization has been performed and the Hg behavior in the soil study has been evaluated. Then, total Hg concentration and easily available Hg for plants have been determined and the absorption and distribution of Hg in Plantago major L (typical specie from the study area) have been studied. The results showed that the total Hg concentrations in the soil ranged from 530 ± 32 mg kg - 1 to 4300 ± 339 mg kg - 1 even to 12378 ± 1051mg kg - 1. It is in accordance with the normal values measured in a Hg mining area. Otherwise, the percentage of soluble Hg in soil with respect to the total Hg concentration is low ( - 1 that could mean a potential risk of pollution of groundwater by leaching process. Finally a brief description about different technologies for decreasing Hg concentration in the study soil, including phytoremediation, has been performed. (Author) 96 refs.

  4. Is mercury from small-scale gold mining prevalent in the southeastern Peruvian Amazon?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno-Brush, Mónica; Rydberg, Johan; Gamboa, Nadia; Storch, Ilse; Biester, Harald

    2016-11-01

    There is an ongoing debate on the fate of mercury (Hg) in areas affected by artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM). Over the last 30 years, ASGM has released 69 tons of Hg into the southeastern Peruvian Amazon. To investigate the role of suspended matter and hydrological factors on the fate of ASGM-Hg, we analysed riverbank sediments and suspended matter along the partially ASGM-affected Malinowski-Tambopata river system and examined Hg accumulation in fish. In addition, local impacts of atmospheric Hg emissions on aquatic systems were assessed by analysing a sediment core from an oxbow lake. Hg concentrations in riverbank sediments are lower (20-53 ng g -1 ) than in suspended matter (∼400-4000 ng g -1 ) due to differences in particle size. Elevated Hg concentrations in suspended matter from ASGM-affected river sections (∼1400 vs. ∼30-120 ng L -1 in unaffected sections) are mainly driven by the increased amount of suspended matter rather than increased Hg concentrations in the suspended matter. The oxbow lake sediment record shows low Hg concentrations (64-86 ng g -1 ) without evidence of any ASGM-related increase in atmospheric Hg input. Hg flux variations are mostly an effect of variations in sediment accumulation rates. Moreover, only 5% of the analysed fish (only piscivores) exceed WHO recommendations for human consumption (500 ng g -1 ). Our findings show that ASGM-affected river sections in the Malinowski-Tambopata system do not exhibit increased Hg accumulation, indicating that the released Hg is either retained at the spill site or transported to areas farther away from the ASGM areas. We suspect that the fate of ASGM-Hg in such tropical rivers is mainly linked to transport associated with the suspended matter, especially during high water situations. We assume that our findings are typical for ASGM-affected areas in tropical regions and could explain why aquatic systems in such ASGM regions often show comparatively modest enrichment

  5. The Mercury Transit 2016: educational activities from CESAR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Ayúcar, Miguel; Breitfelner, Michel

    2017-04-01

    A transit of Mercury in front of the solar disk as seen from Earth is a rare astronomical event which occurs only about every 13-14 times per century. Although its historic scientific importance, e.g. to measure the distances in the solar system, has diminished since humanity roams our solar system with robotic spacecrafts, a Mercury Transit remains a spectacular astronomical event that is used very effectively to engage general public and students to Science and Space in general. The educational project CESAR (Cooperation through Education in Science and Astronomy Research) , working upon previous experience (Venus transit 2012, live Sun transmissions ..), prepared a dual observation of the transit from two separate locations: the CESAR Solar Observatory at ESAC (European Space Astronomy Center), Madrid, Spain, and a twin portable telescope set-up in Cerro Paranal, Chile, achieving a ground baseline parallax of 10.000km. CESAR organized an educational and outreach event in collaboration with several Spanish schools/universities, the ESA Education and Communications offices, the Teide observatory and the ESA projects Bepi Colombo and Solar Orbiter. The driving activity was a continuous 10h interactive Google hangout that connected students in Spain (Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias, CAC in Valencia), students in observatories in Chile, the remote observing teams, and scientists at ESAC. Live images were transmitted via a specific web in two bands (h-alpha and visible). Experts in the fields of Solar and Planetary Physics gave presentations related to the Sun and Mercury. Questions and answers sessions were performed so that world-wide audience could interact with the scientists and engineers. In this paper we explain how this public educational and outreach event was created, what activities it comprised, and the follow up activities.

  6. MERCURY IN EDIBLE WILD-GROWN MUSHROOMS FROM HISTORICAL MINING AREA – SLOVAKIA: BIOACCUMULATION AND RISK ASSESSMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Július Árvay

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In the present paper, we focused on assessment of the contamination levels of five species (n = 33 of edible wild mushrooms (Macrolepiota procera, Boletus reticulatus, Suillus grevillei, Russula xerampelina and Xerocomellus chrysenteron. We collected samples of above-ground parts of the macroscopic fungi species in historical mining and processing area surrounding Banská Bystrica (Central Slovakia in 2014. Within 2 m radius of the samples, we also took samples of underlying substrate. On the basis of the substrate, along with the monitored contaminant – mercury, we calculated bioaccumulation factors for individual species and their anatomical parts (cap and stipe. From the obtained results of the mercury content in the edible mushrooms, we then determined provisionally tolerable weekly intake (PTWI. The limit value for mercury (0.350 mg Hg kg-1 for an individual with average weight of 70 kg is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO. Our results suggest that despite the relatively low level of Hg in the underlying substrate, the species Macrolepiota procera (1.98 mg kg-1 ± 68.2 (0.41 - 3.20 mg kg-1 DW is characterized by extremely high bioaccumulation ability, as confirmed by the bioaccumulation factors (BAFc = 15.3; BAFs = 8.02. PTWI value was exceeded by almost 20%. In case of the other studied edible wild mushroom species, we did not record any increased risk of mercury intake by consumers. Generally it can be stated that consumption of wild mushrooms represents a relatively small but significant risk of negative impact on the consumer´s health.

  7. Mercury concentrations in water resources potentially impacted by coal-fired power stations and artisanal gold mining in Mpumalanga, South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Chavon R; Leaner, Joy J; Nel, Jaco M; Somerset, Vernon S

    2010-09-01

    Total mercury (TotHg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations were determined in various environmental compartments collected from water resources of three Water Management Areas (WMAs) - viz. Olifants, Upper Vaal and Inkomati WMAs, potentially impacted by major anthropogenic mercury (Hg) sources (i.e coal-fired power stations and artisanal gold mining activities). Aqueous TotHg concentrations were found to be elevated above the global average (5.0 ng/L) in 38% of all aqueous samples, while aqueous MeHg concentrations ranged from below the detection limit (0.02 ng/L) to 2.73 +/- 0.10 ng/L. Total Hg concentrations in surface sediment (0-4 cm) ranged from 0.75 +/- 0.01 to 358.23 +/- 76.83 ng/g wet weight (ww). Methylmercury accounted for, on average, 24% of TotHg concentrations in sediment. Methylmercury concentrations were not correlated with TotHg concentrations or organic content in sediment. The concentration of MeHg in invertebrates and fish were highest in the Inkomati WMA and, furthermore, measured just below the US EPA guideline for MeHg in fish.

  8. Environmental Impact of the Helen, Research, and Chicago Mercury Mines on Water, Sediment, and Biota in the Upper Dry Creek Watershed, Lake County, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rytuba, James J.; Hothem, Roger L.; May, Jason T.; Kim, Christopher S.; Lawler, David; Goldstein, Daniel; Brussee, Brianne E.

    2009-01-01

    The Helen, Research, and Chicago mercury (Hg) deposits are among the youngest Hg deposits in the Coast Range Hg mineral belt and are located in the southwestern part of the Clear Lake volcanic field in Lake County, California. The mine workings and tailings are located in the headwaters of Dry Creek. The Helen Hg mine is the largest mine in the watershed having produced about 7,600 flasks of Hg. The Chicago and Research Hg mines produced only a small amount of Hg, less than 30 flasks. Waste rock and tailings have eroded from the mines, and mine drainage from the Helen and Research mines contributes Hg-enriched mine wastes to the headwaters of Dry Creek and contaminate the creek further downstream. The mines are located on federal land managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (USBLM). The USBLM requested that the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) measure and characterize Hg and geochemical constituents in tailings, sediment, water, and biota at the Helen, Research, and Chicago mines and in Dry Creek. This report is made in response to the USBLM request to conduct a Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA - Removal Site Investigation (RSI). The RSI applies to removal of Hg-contaminated mine waste from the Helen, Research, and Chicago mines as a means of reducing Hg transport to Dry Creek. This report summarizes data obtained from field sampling of mine tailings, waste rock, sediment, and water at the Helen, Research, and Chicago mines on April 19, 2001, during a storm event. Further sampling of water, sediment, and biota at the Helen mine area and the upper part of Dry Creek was completed on July 15, 2003, during low-flow conditions. Our results permit a preliminary assessment of the mining sources of Hg and associated chemical constituents that could elevate levels of monomethyl Hg (MMeHg) in the water, sediment, and biota that are impacted by historic mining.

  9. Low Temperature Irradiation Applied to Neutron Activation Analysis of Mercury In Human Whole Blood

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brune, D.

    1966-02-01

    The distribution of mercury in human whole blood has been studied by means of neutron activation analysis. During the irradiation procedure the samples were kept at low temperature by freezing them in a cooling device in order to prevent interferences caused by volatilization and contamination. The mercury activity was separated by means of distillation and ion exchange techniques

  10. Low Temperature Irradiation Applied to Neutron Activation Analysis of Mercury In Human Whole Blood

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brune, D

    1966-02-15

    The distribution of mercury in human whole blood has been studied by means of neutron activation analysis. During the irradiation procedure the samples were kept at low temperature by freezing them in a cooling device in order to prevent interferences caused by volatilization and contamination. The mercury activity was separated by means of distillation and ion exchange techniques.

  11. Effect of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi on the potential of three wild plant species for phytoextraction of mercury from small-scale gold mine tailings

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Fiqri

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A study that was aimed to explore the effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM fungi inoculation on the potential of wild plant species (Paspalum conjugatum, Cyperus kyllingia, and Lindernia crustacea for phytoextraction of mercury from small-scale gold mine tailings was conducted in a glasshouse. Each of the plant seedlings was planted in a plastic pot containing 10 kg of planting medium (mixture of tailings and compost; 50%: 50% by weight. Treatments tested were three plant species and doses of AM fungi inoculation, i.e. 0 and 30 spores/plant. At harvest of 63 days, plant shoot and root were analyzed for mercury concentration. The remaining planting media in the pots were used for growing maize for 84 days. The results showed that the most potential plant species for phytoextraction of mercury was Paspalum conjugatum, while the most mercury tolerant plant was Cyperus kyllingia. Without AM fungi inoculation, the highest accumulation of mercury (44.87 mg/kg was found in the root of Paspalum conjugatum. If AM fungi were inoculated, the highest accumulation of mercury (56.30 mg/kg was also found in the shoot of Paspalum conjugatum. Results of the second experiment proved that the growth and biomass production of maize after mycophytoextraction by the plant species were higher than those of maize grown on media without mycophytoextraction of mercury.

  12. Effects of prescribed fire and post-fire rainfall on mercury mobilization and subsequent contamination assessment in a legacy mine site in Victoria, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abraham, Joji; Dowling, Kim; Florentine, Singarayer

    2018-01-01

    Prescribed fire conducted in fire-prone areas is a cost-effective choice for forest management, but it also affects many of the physicochemical and bio-geological properties of the forest soil, in a similar manner to wild fires. The aim of this study is to investigate the nature of the mercury mobilization after a prescribed fire and the subsequent temporal changes in concentration. A prescribed fire was conducted in a legacy mine site in Central Victoria, Australia, in late August 2015 and soil sample collection and analyses were carried out two days before and two days after the fire, followed by collection at the end of each season and after an intense rainfall event in September 2016. Results revealed the occurrence of mercury volatilization (8.3-97%) during the fire, and the mercury concentration displayed a significant difference (p fire. Integrated assessment with number of pollution indices has shown that the study site is extremely contaminated with mercury during all the sampling events, and this poses a serious ecological risk due to the health impacts of mercury on human and ecosystems. In times of climate fluctuation with concomitant increase in forest fire (including prescribed fire), and subsequent precipitation and runoff, the potential for an increased amount of mercury being mobilized is of heighted significance. Therefore, it is recommended that prescribed fire should be cautiously considered as a forest management strategy in any mercury affected landscapes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Mercury exposure, serum antinuclear/antinucleolar antibodies, and serum cytokine levels in mining populations in Amazonian Brazil: a cross-sectional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Renee M; Nyland, Jennifer F; Silva, Ines A; Ventura, Ana Maria; de Souza, Jose Maria; Silbergeld, Ellen K

    2010-05-01

    Mercury is an immunotoxic substance that has been shown to induce autoimmune disease in rodent models, characterized by lymphoproliferation, overproduction of immunoglobulin (IgG and IgE), and high circulating levels of auto-antibodies directed at antigens located in the nucleus (antinuclear auto-antibodies, or ANA) or the nucleolus (antinucleolar auto-antibodies, or ANoA). We have reported elevated levels of ANA and ANoA in human populations exposed to mercury in artisanal gold mining, though other confounding variables that may also modulate ANA/ANoA levels were not well controlled. The goal of this study is to specifically test whether occupational and environmental conditions (other than mercury exposure) that are associated with artisanal gold mining affect the prevalence of markers of autoimmune dysfunction. We measured ANA, ANoA, and cytokine concentrations in serum and compared results from mercury-exposed artisanal gold miners to those from diamond and emerald miners working under similar conditions and with similar socio-economic status and risks of infectious disease. Mercury-exposed gold miners had higher prevalence of detectable ANA and ANoA and higher titers of ANA and ANoA as compared to diamond and emerald miners with no occupational mercury exposure. Also, mercury-exposed gold miners with detectable ANA or ANoA in serum had significantly higher concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1beta, TNF-alpha, and IFN-gamma in serum as compared to the diamond and emerald miners. This study provides further evidence that mercury exposure may lead to autoimmune dysfunction and systemic inflammation in affected populations. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Dynamic measurement of mercury adsorption and oxidation on activated carbon in simulated cement kiln flue gas

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zheng, Yuanjing; Jensen, Anker Degn; Windelin, Christian

    2012-01-01

    of the sulfite converter is short and typically within 2min. Dynamic mercury adsorption and oxidation tests on commercial activated carbons Darco Hg and HOK standard were performed at 150°C using simulated cement kiln gas and a fixed bed reactor system. It is shown that the converter and analyzer system...... are still under development and are investigated in this work. A commercial red brass converter was tested at 180°C and it was found that the red brass chips work in nitrogen atmosphere only, but do not work properly under simulated cement kiln flue gas conditions. Test of the red brass converter using only...... elemental mercury shows that when HCl is present with either SO2 or NOx the mercury measurement after the converter is unstable and lower than the elemental mercury inlet level. The conclusion is that red brass chips cannot fully reduce oxidized mercury to elemental mercury when simulated cement kiln gas...

  15. Monitoring environmental pollution of arsenic and mercury through neutron activation analysis of human hair

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cortes, E.; Cassorla, V.; Munoz, L.; Gras, N.; Krishnan, S.S.

    1981-01-01

    Hair samples from Chilean people have been analyzed using neutron activation analysis as a monitor of environmental pollution of arsenic and mercury. Water is considered to be an important means of transport of heavy metal pollution in this country. The absorption characteristics of hair for arsenic and mercury from aqueous solutions have been studied. Hair concentrates arsenic (about twofold) and mercury (about 100 fold) from water and therefore, is able to detect even low environmental levels of these elements. Arsenic and mercury are found to behave differently in their absorption behaviour along the length of the hair. (author)

  16. Lack of autoantibody induction by mercury exposure in artisanal gold mining settings in Colombia: Findings and a review of the epidemiology literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez Rodríguez, Luz Helena; Flórez-Vargas, Oscar; Rodríguez-Villamizar, Laura Andrea; Vargas Fiallo, Yolanda; Stashenko, Elena E; Ramírez, Gerardo

    2015-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) has been implicated as an immunotoxicant in experimental animal models, but its role in the induction of human autoimmunity remains unclear due to contradictory findings. Therefore, it has been claimed that it is important to examine other populations in order to clarify the role of Hg in these diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate whether occupational Hg exposure due to artisanal gold mining is associated with the prevalence of autoimmune biomarkers. A cross-sectional study was conducted comparing Hg-exposed gold miners (n = 164) with a control population (n = 127). Hair, blood, and 24-h urine samples were collected for measures of Hg levels, as well as of anti-nuclear antibodies (ANA) and rheumatoid factor (RF). Participants were clinically evaluated by a general practice physician, a rheumatologist, and a toxicologist. Statistically significant differences (p mining activities had a significant impact on autoantibodies as biomarkers of autoimmune diseases. In a review context, the epidemiological findings were interpreted in light of the conflicting data in the literature about how Hg exposure was linked to development of autoantibodies. Validation of these findings in prospective studies is needed to firmly establish the role of Hg in development of autoimmunity in human populations.

  17. Development of novel activated carbon-based adsorbents for the control of mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Radisav D. Vidic

    1999-03-01

    In addition to naturally occurring mercury sources, anthropogenic activities increase the mercury loading to the environment. Although not all produced mercury is dissipated directly into the environment, only minor portions of the total production are stocked or recycled, and the rest of the mercury and its compounds is finally released in some way into atmosphere, surface waters and soil, or ends in landfills dumps, and refuse. Since mercury and its compounds are highly toxic, their presence in the environment constitutes potential impact on all living organisms, including man. The first serious consequence of industrial mercury discharges causing neurological disorder even death occurred in Minimata, Japan in 1953. Systematic studies showed that mercury poisoning is mainly found in fish-eating populations. However, various levels of mercury are also found in food other than fish. During the past several decades, research has been conducted on the evaluation of risks due to exposure to mercury and the development of control technologies for mercury emissions. In 1990, the Clean Air Act Amendments listed mercury, along with 10 other metallic species, as a hazardous air pollutant (HAP). This has further stimulated research for mercury control during the past several years. The impact of mercury on humans, sources of mercury in the environment, current mercury control strategies and the objective of this research are discussed in this section.

  18. Spatial, Temporal, and Dietary Variables Associated with Elevated Mercury Exposure in Peruvian Riverine Communities Upstream and Downstream of Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren Wyatt

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM is a primary contributor to global mercury and its rapid expansion raises concern for human exposure. Non-occupational exposure risks are presumed to be strongly tied to environmental contamination; however, the relationship between environmental and human mercury exposure, how exposure has changed over time, and risk factors beyond fish consumption are not well understood in ASGM settings. In Peruvian riverine communities (n = 12, where ASGM has increased 4–6 fold over the past decade, we provide a large-scale assessment of the connection between environmental and human mercury exposure by comparing total mercury contents in human hair (2-cm segment, n = 231 to locally caught fish tissue, analyzing temporal exposure in women of child bearing age (WCBA, 15–49 years, n = 46 over one year, and evaluating general mercury exposure risks including fish and non-fish dietary items through household surveys and linear mixed models. Calculations of an individual’s oral reference dose using the total mercury content in locally-sourced fish underestimated the observed mercury exposure for individuals in many communities. This discrepancy was particularly evident in communities upstream of ASGM, where mercury levels in river fish, water, and sediment measurements from a previous study were low, yet hair mercury was chronically elevated. Hair from 86% of individuals and 77% of children exceeded a USEPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency provisional level (1.2 µg/g that could result in child developmental impairment. Chronically elevated mercury exposure was observed in the temporal analysis in WCBA. If the most recent exposure exceeded the USEPA level, there was a 97% probability that the individual exceeded that level 8–10 months of the previous year. Frequent household consumption of some fruits (tomato, banana and grains (quinoa was significantly associated with 29–75% reductions in hair mercury

  19. Spatial, Temporal, and Dietary Variables Associated with Elevated Mercury Exposure in Peruvian Riverine Communities Upstream and Downstream of Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Lauren; Ortiz, Ernesto J; Feingold, Beth; Berky, Axel; Diringer, Sarah; Morales, Ana Maria; Jurado, Elvis Rojas; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Pan, William

    2017-12-15

    Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is a primary contributor to global mercury and its rapid expansion raises concern for human exposure. Non-occupational exposure risks are presumed to be strongly tied to environmental contamination; however, the relationship between environmental and human mercury exposure, how exposure has changed over time, and risk factors beyond fish consumption are not well understood in ASGM settings. In Peruvian riverine communities ( n = 12), where ASGM has increased 4-6 fold over the past decade, we provide a large-scale assessment of the connection between environmental and human mercury exposure by comparing total mercury contents in human hair (2-cm segment, n = 231) to locally caught fish tissue, analyzing temporal exposure in women of child bearing age (WCBA, 15-49 years, n = 46) over one year, and evaluating general mercury exposure risks including fish and non-fish dietary items through household surveys and linear mixed models. Calculations of an individual's oral reference dose using the total mercury content in locally-sourced fish underestimated the observed mercury exposure for individuals in many communities. This discrepancy was particularly evident in communities upstream of ASGM, where mercury levels in river fish, water, and sediment measurements from a previous study were low, yet hair mercury was chronically elevated. Hair from 86% of individuals and 77% of children exceeded a USEPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency) provisional level (1.2 µg/g) that could result in child developmental impairment. Chronically elevated mercury exposure was observed in the temporal analysis in WCBA. If the most recent exposure exceeded the USEPA level, there was a 97% probability that the individual exceeded that level 8-10 months of the previous year. Frequent household consumption of some fruits (tomato, banana) and grains (quinoa) was significantly associated with 29-75% reductions in hair mercury. Collectively, these

  20. Adsorption of mercury by activated carbon prepared from dried sewage sludge in simulated flue gas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Jeongmin; Lee, Sang-Sup

    2018-04-25

    Conversion of sewage sludge to activated carbon is attractive as an alternative method to ocean dumping for the disposal of sewage sludge. Injection of activated carbon upstream of particulate matter control devices has been suggested as a method to remove elemental mercury from flue gas. Activated carbon was prepared using various activation temperatures and times and was tested for their mercury adsorption efficiency using lab-scale systems. To understand the effect of the physical property of the activated carbon, its mercury adsorption efficiency was investigated as a function of their Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) surface area. Two simulated flue gas conditions: (1) without hydrogen chloride (HCl) and (2) with 20 ppm HCl, were used to investigate the effect of flue gas composition on the mercury adsorption capacity of activated carbon. Despite very low BET surface area of the prepared sewage sludge activated carbons, their mercury adsorption efficiencies were comparable under both simulated flue gas conditions to those of pinewood and coal activated carbons. After injecting HCl into the simulated flue gas, all sewage sludge activated carbons demonstrated high adsorption efficiencies, i.e., more than 87%, regardless of their BET surface area. IMPLICATIONS We tested activated carbons prepared from dried sewage sludge to investigate the effect of their physical properties on their mercury adsorption efficiency. Using two simulated flue gas conditions, we conducted mercury speciation for the outlet gas. We found that the sewage sludge activated carbon had comparable mercury adsorption efficiency to pinewood and coal activated carbons, and the presence of HCl minimized the effect of physical property of the activated carbon on its mercury adsorption efficiency.

  1. Geochemistry and mercury contamination in receiving environments of artisanal mining wastes and identified concerns for food safety

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reichelt-Brushett, Amanda J., E-mail: amanda.reichelt-brushett@scu.edu.au [Marine Ecology Research Centre, School of Environment, Science and Engineering, Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); School of Environment, Science and Engineering Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); Stone, Jane [School of Environment, Science and Engineering Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); Howe, Pelli [Marine Ecology Research Centre, School of Environment, Science and Engineering, Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); School of Environment, Science and Engineering Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); Thomas, Bernard [School of Environment, Science and Engineering Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); Clark, Malcolm [Marine Ecology Research Centre, School of Environment, Science and Engineering, Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); School of Environment, Science and Engineering Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); Male, Yusthinus [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Science, Pattimura University, Ambon (Indonesia); Nanlohy, Albert [Department of Fisheries and Marine Science, Pattimura University, Ambon (Indonesia); Butcher, Paul [School of Environment, Science and Engineering Southern Cross University, PO Box 157, Lismore, NSW (Australia); NSW Department of Primary Industries, National Marine Science Centre, PO Box 4321, Coffs Harbour, NSW (Australia)

    2017-01-15

    Artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) using mercury (Hg) amalgamation has been occurring on Buru Island, Indonesia since early 2012, and has caused rapid accumulation of high Hg concentrations in river, estuary and marine sediments. In this study, sediment samples were collected from several sites downstream of the Mount Botak ASGM site, as well as in the vicinity of the more recently established site at Gogrea where no sampling had previously been completed. All sediment samples had total Hg (THg) concentrations exceeding Indonesian sediment quality guidelines and were up to 82 times this limit at one estuary site. The geochemistry of sediments in receiving environments indicates the potential for Hg-methylation to form highly bioavailable Hg species. To assess the current contamination threat from consumption of local seafood, samples of fish, molluscs and crustaceans were collected from the Namlea fish market and analysed for THg concentrations. The majority of edible tissue samples had elevated THg concentrations, which raises concerns for food safety. This study shows that river, estuary and marine ecosystems downstream of ASGM operations on Buru Island are exposed to dangerously high Hg concentrations, which are impacting aquatic food chains, and fisheries resources. Considering the high dietary dependence on marine protein in the associated community and across the Mollucas Province, and the short time period since ASGM operations commenced in this region, the results warrant urgent further investigation, risk mitigation, and community education. - Highlights: • Mercury contamination of sediments and seafood due to artisanal gold mining. • Considerable risks to human and ecosystem health are identified. • Results emphasise the urgent need for risk mitigation and community education.

  2. Geochemistry and mercury contamination in receiving environments of artisanal mining wastes and identified concerns for food safety

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reichelt-Brushett, Amanda J.; Stone, Jane; Howe, Pelli; Thomas, Bernard; Clark, Malcolm; Male, Yusthinus; Nanlohy, Albert; Butcher, Paul

    2017-01-01

    Artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) using mercury (Hg) amalgamation has been occurring on Buru Island, Indonesia since early 2012, and has caused rapid accumulation of high Hg concentrations in river, estuary and marine sediments. In this study, sediment samples were collected from several sites downstream of the Mount Botak ASGM site, as well as in the vicinity of the more recently established site at Gogrea where no sampling had previously been completed. All sediment samples had total Hg (THg) concentrations exceeding Indonesian sediment quality guidelines and were up to 82 times this limit at one estuary site. The geochemistry of sediments in receiving environments indicates the potential for Hg-methylation to form highly bioavailable Hg species. To assess the current contamination threat from consumption of local seafood, samples of fish, molluscs and crustaceans were collected from the Namlea fish market and analysed for THg concentrations. The majority of edible tissue samples had elevated THg concentrations, which raises concerns for food safety. This study shows that river, estuary and marine ecosystems downstream of ASGM operations on Buru Island are exposed to dangerously high Hg concentrations, which are impacting aquatic food chains, and fisheries resources. Considering the high dietary dependence on marine protein in the associated community and across the Mollucas Province, and the short time period since ASGM operations commenced in this region, the results warrant urgent further investigation, risk mitigation, and community education. - Highlights: • Mercury contamination of sediments and seafood due to artisanal gold mining. • Considerable risks to human and ecosystem health are identified. • Results emphasise the urgent need for risk mitigation and community education.

  3. Changes in Mercury Deposition in a Mining and Smelting Region as Recorded in Tree Rings

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hojdová, Maria; Navrátil, Tomáš; Rohovec, Jan; Žák, Karel; Vaněk, A.; Chrastný, V.; Bače, R.; Svoboda, M.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 216, 1/4 (2011), s. 73-82 ISSN 0049-6979 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP526/09/P404 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30130516 Keywords : mercury * dendrochemistry * trees * geochemical archives Subject RIV: DD - Geochemistry Impact factor: 1.625, year: 2011

  4. Sustainability Activities In The Mining Sector: Current Status And Challenges Ahead Limestone Mining In Nusakambangan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayuningrum, Theresia Vika; Purnaweni, Hartuti

    2018-02-01

    Potential Karst area in Nusakambangan has an important role in maintaining the balance of nature. But with the existence of mining activities, will automatically change the environmental conditions there. In order for the utilization of resources to meet the rules of optimization between the interests of mining and sustainability of the environment so in every mining sector activities required a variety of environmental studies. The purpose of this study is to find out how the analysis of environmental management due to limestone mining activities in Nusakambangan so that it can be known the management of mining areas are optimal, wise based on ecological principles, and sustainability. In qualitative research methods, data analysis using description percentage, with the type of data collected in the form of primary data and secondary data.

  5. Feasibility of mercury removal from simulated flue gas by activated chars made from poultry manures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klasson, K Thomas; Lima, Isabel M; Boihem, Larry L; Wartelle, Lynda H

    2010-12-01

    Increased emphasis on reduction of mercury emissions from coal fired electric power plants has resulted in environmental regulations that may in the future require application of activated carbons as mercury sorbents for mercury removal. At the same time, the quantity of poultry manure generated each year is large and technologies that take advantage of the material should be explored. The purpose of the work was to obtain preliminary data to investigate if activated chars made from different poultry manures could adsorb mercury from simulated flue gas. In laboratory experiments, activated chars made from chicken cake and litter removed mercury from the gas as well as a commercial alternative. It was also found that acid-washing these chars after activation may improve pore structure but does not influence the mercury removal efficiency. Activated chars were also made from turkey cake and litter. These raw materials produced activated chars with similar pore structure as those made from chicken manure, but they did not adsorb mercury as well. Acid-washing the turkey manure-based chars improved their performance, but this step would add to the cost of production. Preliminary evaluations suggest that unwashed activated chars may cost as little as $0.95/kg to produce. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  6. Mercury in the gold mining district of San Martin de Loba, South of Bolivar (Colombia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olivero-Verbel, Jesus; Caballero-Gallardo, Karina; Turizo-Tapia, Alexi

    2015-04-01

    Gold mining is responsible for most Hg pollution in developing countries. The aims of this study were to assess the levels of total Hg (T-Hg) in human hair, fish, water, macrophyte, and sediment samples in the gold mining district of San Martin de Loba, Colombia, as well as to determine fish consumption-based risks for T-Hg ingestion. T-Hg levels were measured by electrothermal atomization and atomic absorption spectroscopy. The overall mean T-Hg level in hair for humans in the mining district of San Martin de Loba was 2.12 μg/g, whereas for the reference site, Chimichagua, Cesar, it was 0.58 μg/g. Mean T-Hg levels were not different when considered within localities belonging to the mining district but differed when the comparison included Chimichagua. T-Hg levels in examined locations were weakly but significantly associated with age and height, as well as with fish consumption, except in San Martin de Loba. High T-Hg concentrations in fish were detected in Pseudoplatystoma magdaleniatum, Caquetaia kraussii, Ageneiosus pardalis, Cyrtocharax magdalenae, and Triportheus magdalenae, whereas the lowest appeared in Prochilodus magdalenae and Hemiancistrus wilsoni. In terms of Hg exposure due to fish consumption, only these last two species offer some guarantee of low risk for Hg-related health problems. Water, floating macrophytes, and sediments from effluents near mining sites also had high Hg values. In mines of San Martin de Loba and Hatillo de Loba, for instance, the geoaccumulation index (I(geo)) for sediments reached values greater than 6, indicating extreme pollution. In short, these data support the presence of a high Hg-polluted environment in this mining district, with direct risk for deleterious effects on the health of the mining communities.

  7. Distribution of total mercury and methylmercury around the small-scale gold mining area along the Cikaniki River, Bogor, Indonesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomiyasu, Takashi; Kodamatani, Hitoshi; Hamada, Yuriko Kono; Matsuyama, Akito; Imura, Ryusuke; Taniguchi, Yoko; Hidayati, Nuril; Rahajoe, Joeni Setijo

    2017-01-01

    This study investigates the distribution of total mercury (T-Hg) and methylmercury (MeHg) in the soil and water around the artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) area along the Cikaniki River, West Java, Indonesia. The concentration of T-Hg and MeHg in the forest soil ranged from 0.07 to 16.7 mg kg -1 and from <0.07 to 2.0 μg kg -1 , respectively, whereas it ranged from 0.40 to 24.9 mg kg -1 and from <0.07 to 56.3 μg kg -1 , respectively, in the paddy field soil. In the vertical variation of the T-Hg of forest soil, the highest values were observed at the soil surface, and these values were found to decrease with increasing depth. A similar variation was observed for MeHg and total organic carbon content (TOC), and a linear relationship was observed between them. Mercury deposited on the soil surface can be trapped and retained by organic matter and subjected to methylation. The slope of the line obtained for the T-Hg vs. TOC plot became larger near the ASGM villages, implying a higher rate of mercury deposition in these areas. In contrast, the plots of MeHg vs. TOC fell along the same trend line regardless of the distance from the ASGM village. Organic carbon content may be a predominant factor in controlling MeHg formation in forest soils. The T-Hg concentration in the river water ranged from 0.40 to 9.6 μg L -1 . River water used for irrigation can prove to be a source of mercury for the paddy fields. The concentrations of Hg 0 and Hg 2+ in river water showed similar variations as that observed for the T-Hg concentration. The highest Hg 0 concentration of 3.2 μg L -1 can be attributed to the waste inflow from work sites. The presence of Hg 0 in river water can become a source of mercury present in the atmosphere along the river. MeHg concentration in the river water was found to be 0.004-0.14% of T-Hg concentration, which was considerably lower than the concentrations of other Hg species. However, MeHg comprised approximately 0.2% of the T

  8. Geomorphological and hydrological transformation of the landscape due to mining activity in the mining area Bana Dolina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Balga, J.; Hroncova, E.

    2010-01-01

    After more than 150 year history of mining activity in the brown coal mining area Bana Dolina have been produced a range of anthropogenic forms of relief. For reasons of underground coal mining to make interventions in the hydrographic network. Significant changes due to surface mining of coal seams should result in subsidence basins of different sizes, damage to buildings and roads. Mining activity was influenced by agricultural and forestry fund, gardening settlements. All these factors have contributed to the change in relief of the surrounding area. This study aims to research the effects of the largest mining Bana Dolina mining area reflecting the structure of land area. (authors)

  9. Estimation of active rockburst prevention effectiveness during longwall mining under disadvantageous geological and mining conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Łukasz Wojtecki

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Underground longwall mining of coal seams in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin is currently being carried out under increasingly difficult geological and mining conditions. Mining depth, dislocations and mining remnants are the main factors responsible for the most significant rockburst hazard, which can be minimized via the use of active and passive rockburst prevention. Active rockburst prevention in longwalls is usually based on blasting, in order to either destress local stress concentrations in the rock mass or to fracture the thick layers of strong roof rocks to prevent or minimize the impact of high energy tremors on excavations. The accurate estimation of active rockburst prevention effectiveness is particularly important when mining under disadvantageous geological and mining conditions, which are associated with high levels of this hazard. The efficiency of blasting applied for this purpose is typically evaluated from the seismic effect, which is calculated based on seismic monitoring data and the weight of the charged explosive. This method, as used previously in the Czech Republic, was adopted in the present study to analyze conditions occurring in a Polish hard coal mine in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin. Parameters of long hole destress blastings in roof rocks (torpedo blastings from the face of the assigned longwall in coal seam no. 507 were correct a success according to the seismic effect method and corresponded to observations made in situ. The analytical method presented enables the rapid estimation of destress blasting effectiveness and could also be useful when determining appropriate active rockburst prevention.

  10. Optimization of procedures for mercury-203 instrumental neutron activation analysis in human urine

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Blotcky, A J; Claassen, J P [Nebraska Univ., Omaha, NE (United States). Medical Center; Fung, Y K [Nebraska Univ., Lincoln, NE (United States). Dept. of Chemistry; Meade, A G; Rack, E P [Nebraska Univ., Lincoln, NE (United States)

    1995-08-01

    Mercury, a known neurotoxin, has been implicated in etiology and pathogenesis of such disease states as Alzheimer`s and Parkinson`s diseases. There is concern that the exposure to mercury vapor released from dental amalgam restorations is a potential health hazard. Measurement of mercury concentrations in blood or urine may be useful in diagnosis of mercury poisoning and in assessing the extent exposure. This study describes the optimization of pre-neutron activation analysis procedures such as sampling, selection of irradiation and counting vials and acid digestion in order to minimize mercury loss via volatilization and/or permeation through containers. Therefore, the determination of mercury can be complicated by these potential losses. In the optimized procedure 20mL of urine was spiked with three different concentrations of mercury, digested with concentrated nitric acid, and placed in polypropylene vials for irradiation and counting. Analysis was performed by subtracting the Se-75 photopeak contribution to the 279 keV Hg-203 photopeak and applying the method of standard additions. Urinary mercury concentrations in normal human subjects were determined to be of the order of 10ng/mL. (author). 22 refs., 1 fig., 5 tabs.

  11. Optimization of procedures for mercury-203 instrumental neutron activation analysis in human urine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blotcky, A.J.; Claassen, J.P.

    1995-01-01

    Mercury, a known neurotoxin, has been implicated in etiology and pathogenesis of such disease states as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. There is concern that the exposure to mercury vapor released from dental amalgam restorations is a potential health hazard. Measurement of mercury concentrations in blood or urine may be useful in diagnosis of mercury poisoning and in assessing the extent exposure. This study describes the optimization of pre-neutron activation analysis procedures such as sampling, selection of irradiation and counting vials and acid digestion in order to minimize mercury loss via volatilization and/or permeation through containers. Therefore, the determination of mercury can be complicated by these potential losses. In the optimized procedure 20mL of urine was spiked with three different concentrations of mercury, digested with concentrated nitric acid, and placed in polypropylene vials for irradiation and counting. Analysis was performed by subtracting the Se-75 photopeak contribution to the 279 keV Hg-203 photopeak and applying the method of standard additions. Urinary mercury concentrations in normal human subjects were determined to be of the order of 10ng/mL. (author). 22 refs., 1 fig., 5 tabs

  12. Influence of plankton mercury dynamics and trophic pathways on mercury concentrations of top predator fish of a mining-impacted reservoir

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stewart, A.R.; Kuwabara, J.S.; Marvin-DiPasquale, M.; Saiki, M.K.; Alpers, C.N.; Krabbenhoft, D.P.

    2008-01-01

    A study was conducted to document the water quality in the Camp Far West Reservoir (CFWR) located at 300 feet above sea level in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada in northern California. The CFWR is characterized by drawdown in the late summer and fall. It receives acidic, metal-rich drainage seasonally from an inactive gold mine. Water-quality constituents vary considerably by season. Water-quality data for CFWR were used together with data from studies of sediment and biota to develop a conceptual model for mercury methylation and bioaccumulation in the reservoir and the lower Bear River watershed. The study examined the physical and biogeochemical characteristics of the aquatic environment that affect growth dynamics of phytoplankton and the zooplankton communities that depend on them. The uptake affect of methylmercury (MeHg) into the pelagic food web was also investigated by assessing the changes in the quality and quantity of suspended particulate material, zooplankton taxonomy, and MeHg concentrations with seasonal changes. MeHg concentrations in bulk zooplankton increased at high water and were positively correlated with cladoceran biomass and negatively correlated with rotifer biomass. According to stable isotope analysis, MeHg concentrations in the pelagic-based food web were generally higher than in the benthic-based food web. The difference in MeHg bioaccumulation among trophic pathways appears to be set at the base of the food webs. It was concluded that plankton dynamics plays a key role in driving the MeHg content of zooplankton and MeHg bioaccumulation in top predators in pelagic-based food webs. 58 refs., 1 tab., 8 figs

  13. Influence of plankton mercury dynamics and trophic pathways on mercury concentrations of top predator fish of a mining-impacted reservoir

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stewart, A.R.; Kuwabara, J.S.; Marvin-DiPasquale, M. [United States Geological Survey, Menlo Park, CA (United States); Saiki, M.K. [United States Geological Survey, Western Fisheries Research Center, Dixon, CA (United States); Alpers, C.N. [United States Geological Survey, California Water Science Center, Sacramento, CA (United States); Krabbenhoft, D.P. [United States Geological Survey, Middleton, WI (United States)

    2008-11-15

    A study was conducted to document the water quality in the Camp Far West Reservoir (CFWR) located at 300 feet above sea level in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada in northern California. The CFWR is characterized by drawdown in the late summer and fall. It receives acidic, metal-rich drainage seasonally from an inactive gold mine. Water-quality constituents vary considerably by season. Water-quality data for CFWR were used together with data from studies of sediment and biota to develop a conceptual model for mercury methylation and bioaccumulation in the reservoir and the lower Bear River watershed. The study examined the physical and biogeochemical characteristics of the aquatic environment that affect growth dynamics of phytoplankton and the zooplankton communities that depend on them. The uptake affect of methylmercury (MeHg) into the pelagic food web was also investigated by assessing the changes in the quality and quantity of suspended particulate material, zooplankton taxonomy, and MeHg concentrations with seasonal changes. MeHg concentrations in bulk zooplankton increased at high water and were positively correlated with cladoceran biomass and negatively correlated with rotifer biomass. According to stable isotope analysis, MeHg concentrations in the pelagic-based food web were generally higher than in the benthic-based food web. The difference in MeHg bioaccumulation among trophic pathways appears to be set at the base of the food webs. It was concluded that plankton dynamics plays a key role in driving the MeHg content of zooplankton and MeHg bioaccumulation in top predators in pelagic-based food webs. 58 refs., 1 tab., 8 figs.

  14. Factors Affecting Elevated Arsenic and Methyl Mercury Concentrations in Small Shield Lakes Surrounding Gold Mines near the Yellowknife, NT, (Canada Region.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam James Houben

    Full Text Available Gold mines in the Yellowknife, NT, region--in particular, the Giant Mine--operated from 1949-99, releasing 237,000 tonnes of waste arsenic trioxide (As2O3 dust, among other compounds, from gold ore extraction and roasting processes. For the first time, we show the geospatial distribution of roaster-derived emissions of several chemical species beyond the mine property on otherwise undisturbed taiga shield lakes within a 25 km radius of the mine, 11 years after its closing. Additionally, we demonstrate that underlying bedrock is not a significant source for the elevated concentrations in overlying surface waters. Aquatic arsenic (As concentrations are well above guidelines for drinking water (10 μg/L and protection for aquatic life (5 μg/L, ranging up to 136 μg/L in lakes within 4 km from the mine, to 2.0 μg/L in lakes 24 km away. High conversion ratios of methyl mercury were shown in lakes near the roaster stack as well, with MeHg concentrations reaching 44% of total mercury. The risk of elevated exposures by these metals is significant, as many lakes used for recreation and fishing near the City of Yellowknife are within this radius of elevated As and methyl Hg concentrations.

  15. Impacts of mining activities on water and soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warhate, S R; Yenkie, M K N; Chaudhari, M D; Pokale, W K

    2006-04-01

    Seven coal mines are situated in Wardha River Valley. These mines are located at Wani (Dist. Yavatmal of Maharashtra). Out of these, 5 open cast coal mines are run by Western Coal Field Ltd. India. The present study has been undertaken to assess the impacts of mining activities in the adjacent areas. Total 25 samples of water and 19 samples of soil from Nilapur, Bramhani, Kolera, Gowari, Pimpari and Aheri were analyzed for pH, TDS, hardness, alkalinity, fluoride, chloride, nitrite, nitrate, phosphate, sulfate, cadmium, lead, zinc, copper, nickel, arsenic, manganese, sodium and potassium, and the results were compared with the limits of Indian Standards: 10500.

  16. Responsible Development of Areva's Mining Activities. Report 2011

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2012-09-01

    After a presentation of the approach to responsibility adopted by AREVA to be a responsible mining stake holder (charter of values, implemented policies, risk prevention and management, best practices), this report gives an overview of mining activities (international presence, production in constant increase) with a focus on uranium mining which is the core business (the different phases are briefly presented: exploration, project development, mining, site decommissioning). It outlines personnel qualification and commitment, actions and policy in the field of personnel health and safety. It addresses the environmental policy: key levers, environmental management system, examples throughout the entire mining life cycle, changes in site consumptions and emissions, promotion of biodiversity. The next part concerns Areva's social commitment (dialogue, development aid in mining territories). Then, performance is expressed in terms of indicators for these different issues (teams, environmental policy, social involvement)

  17. Millennial scale impact on the marine biogeochemical cycle of mercury from early mining on the Iberian Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, O.; Martínez-Cortizas, A.; Mateo, M. A.; Biester, H.; Bindler, R.

    2013-01-01

    The high-resolution mercury record of a Posidonia oceanica mat in the northwest Mediterranean provides an unprecedented testimony of changes in environmental mercury (Hg) loading to the coastal marine environment over the past 4315 yr BP. The period reconstructed made it possible to establish tentative preanthropogenic background Hg levels for the area (6.8 ± 1.5 ng g-1 in bulk sediments). A small, but significant, anthropogenic Hg increase was identifiable by 2500 yr BP, in agreement with the beginning of intense mining in Spain. Changes in the record suggest four major periods of anthropogenic Hg pollution inputs to the Mediterranean: first, during the Roman Empire (2100-1800 yr BP); second, in the Late Middle Ages (970-650 yr BP); third, in the modern historical era (530-380 yr BP); and fourth, in the industrial period (last 250 years), with Hg concentrations two-, four-, five-, and tenfold higher than background concentrations, respectively. Hg from anthropogenic sources has dominated during the last millennium (increase from 12 to 100 ng g-1), which can be related to the widespread historical exploitation of ore resources on the Iberian Peninsula. The chronology of Hg concentrations in the mat archive, together with other Hg pollution records from the Iberian Peninsula, suggests regional-scale Hg transport and deposition and shows earlier marine Hg pollution than elsewhere in Europe. Moreover, the mat also records a higher number of historic contamination phases, in comparison with other natural archives, probably due to the fact that the bioaccumulating capacity of P. oceanica magnify environmental changes in Hg concentrations. In this study, we demonstrate the uniqueness of P. oceanica meadows as a long-term archive recording trends in Hg abundance in the marine coastal environment, as well as its potential role in the Mediterranean as a long-term Hg sink.

  18. Geochemical characterization of water, sediment, and biota affected by mercury contamination and acidic drainage from historical gold mining, Greenhorn Creek, Nevada County, California, 1999-2001

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpers, Charles N.; Hunerlach, Michael P.; May, Jason T.; Hothem, Roger L.; Taylor, Howard E.; Antweiler, Ronald C.; De Wild, John F.; Lawler, David A.

    2005-01-01

    In 1999, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) initiated studies of mercury and methylmercury occurrence, transformation, and transport in the Bear River and Yuba River watersheds of the northwestern Sierra Nevada. Because these watersheds were affected by large-scale, historical gold extraction using mercury amalgamation beginning in the 1850s, they were selected for a pilot study of mercury transport by the USGS and other cooperating agencies. This report presents data on methylmercury (MeHg) and total mercury (THg) concentrations in water, bed sediment, invertebrates, and frogs collected at 40 stations during 1999-2001 in the Greenhorn Creek drainage, a major tributary to Bear River. Results document several mercury contamination ?hot spots? that represent potential targets for ongoing and future remediation efforts at abandoned mine sites in the study area. Water-quality samples were collected one or more times at each of 29 stations. The concentrations of total mercury in 45 unfiltered water samples ranged from 0.80 to 153,000 nanograms per liter (ng/L); the median was 9.6 ng/L. Total mercury concentrations in filtered water (41 samples) ranged from less than 0.3 to 8,000 ng/L; the median was 2.7 ng/L. Concentrations of methylmercury in the unfiltered water (40 samples) ranged from less than 0.04 to 9.1 ng/L; the median was 0.07 ng/L. Methylmercury in filtered water (13 samples) ranged from less than 0.04 to 0.27 ng/L; the median was 0.04 ng/L. Acidic drainage with pH values as low as 3.4 was encountered in some of the mined areas. Elevated concentrations of aluminum, cadmium, copper, iron, manganese, nickel, and zinc were found at several stations, especially in the more acidic water samples. Total mercury concentrations in sediment were determined by laboratory and field methods. Total mercury concentrations (determined by laboratory methods) in ten samples from eight stations ranged from about 0.0044 to 12 ?g/g (microgram per gram, equivalent to parts per

  19. Environmental and occupational exposures to mercury among indigenous people in Dunkwa-On-Offin, a small scale gold mining area in the South-West of Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwaansa-Ansah, E E; Basu, N; Nriagu, J O

    2010-11-01

    Total mercury concentrations in human hair and urine samples were determined to ascertain the extent of environmental and occupational mercury exposure in Dunkwa-On-Offin, a small scale gold mining area of the central-west region of Ghana. In all ninety-four (94) hair and urine samples comprising of forty (40) small scale miners and fifty-four (54) farmers were collected and analyzed for their total mercury levels using the cold vapour atomic absorption spectrometry. The hair total mercury concentrations ranged from 0.63 to 7.19 ug/g with a mean of 2.35 ± 1.58 ug/g for the farmers and 0.57-6.07 ug/g with a mean of 2.14 ± 1.53 ug/g for the small scale gold miners. There was no significant correlation between the total mercury concentration and the average weekly fish diet. The total mercury concentrations in urine of the miners were higher than those of the farmers and ranged from 0.32 to 3.62 ug/L with a mean of 1.23 ± 0.86 ug/L. The urine concentrations of farmers ranged from 0.075 to 2.31 ug/L with a mean of 0.69 ± 0.39 ug/L. Although the results indicate elevated internal dose of mercury the current levels of exposures do not appear to pose a significant health threat to the people.

  20. A Sequential Chemical Extraction and Spectroscopic Assessment of the Potential Bioavailability of Mercury Released From the Inoperative New Idria Mercury Mine, San Benito Co., CA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jew, A. D.; Luong, P. N.; Rytuba, J. J.; Brown, G. E.

    2012-12-01

    The inoperative New Idria mercury mine in San Benito Co., CA, is a potential point source of Hg to the Central Valley of California. To determine the phases and the potential bioavailability of Hg present in stream bed deposits downstream of the mine, sequential chemical extractions (SCEs) targeting Hg-bearing phases and synchrotron-based spectroscopic and imaging techniques were used on sediment samples taken from the acid mine drainage (AMD) system, Hg sorbed in the laboratory to ferrihydrite (synthetic 2-line and natural), and Hg associated with diatom-rich samples. In all field samples examined, both the wet and dry seasons, removal of > 97% of the Hg required 1M KOH or harsher chemical treatments. X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) showed that HgS was the dominant inorganic Hg phase present, with no detectable Hg associated with the ferrihydrite. Uptake and subsequent SCE analysis of Hg to both synthetic and natural ferrihydrite showed that 1M MgCl2 removed ≥ 90% of the total Hg, suggesting that Hg does not sorb strongly to ferrihydrite. This finding is surprising, because in most settings ferrihydrite is considered to be a strong adsorbent of heavy metals. Due to the lack of Hg sorption to ferrihydrite in field samples, another pool for the non-HgS/HgSe fraction in sediments is needed. SEM analysis of the downstream samples showed that regardless of pH, freshwater diatoms were present. To determine if diatoms were the sink for dissolved Hg in this system, SCE analysis on commercially available and diatom-rich field samples from the New Idria site and Harley Gulch (Lake County, CA) were completed. The vast majority of Hg in diatom-rich samples was removed by 1M KOH, which corresponds to the non-HgS/HgSe fraction of the New Idria field samples. Analysis for carbon and nitrogen in the diatom-rich samples showed no detectable nitrogen, indicating little to no organic material was left in the samples. We therefore infer that Hg in the diatoms is contained in

  1. The impact of mining activities on agriculture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saghatelyan, A.; Sahakyan, L.

    2009-04-01

    The present study was designed to assess environmental status of the territory of the city of Kapan and neighboring agricultural farms with an emphasis on the impact of the tailing repository and operation of the Kapan copper plant on soil, water and plant pollution. The region has long been known for its abundant copper and polymetallic deposits with vein- and stockwork-type mineralization. Moreover, historically Kapan was the miners' city and a powerful copper mining and dressing plant has been operating there since 1846. The performed geochemical survey and a sanitary-hygienic assessment of pollution of the Kapan's soils have indicated high contents of Cu, Pb, Ni, Mo and As vs. the background and Maximum Acceptable Concentrations (MAC). The assessment of pollution levels of surface water, including natural and industrial streams, has indicated that unlike natural stream waters, mining waters from the adit and industrial stream waters were high in a number of toxic (Cd, As, Hg) and ore (Cu, Zn) elements. Activation of most chemical elements and particularly of heavy metals in water environment rapidly brings to pollution of environmental components (soils, plants, etc.), and as a result heavy metals enter the human organism via trophic chains. So, in the frame of the research eco-toxicological studies were performed on accumulation of heavy metals (Cu, Ni, Cr, Zn, Sn, Mo), including high toxic elements (As, Hg, Pb, Cd) in agricultural soils and in the basic assortment of agricultural crops. The research covered agricultural lands within the bounds of the city and private plots in neighboring villages. Wholly, 24 vegetable, melon field, cereal (corn), oil-bearing (sunflower) species adding spicy herbs and fruits were studied. It should be stressed that agricultural crops growing on the study sites are used provide food products not only by the population of this particular city and neighboring villages, but of other cities, too. It means that the average number of

  2. Determination of mercury in ppb level by activation analysis and chemical separation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Requejo, C.S.

    1983-02-01

    A method for determining mercury in steel samples was developed. Activation analysis using thermal neutrons, followed by radiochemical separations to eliminate 75 Se interferences, were applied. Sixty hours after the end of the irradiation, the samples were processed and distillation of mercury and selenium bromides were carried out. Selenium was separated as an element and mercury sulfide was precipitaded. The chemical separation procedure was tested by using a tracer technique; the recovery yield was 99,2% + - 2,7%. (C.L.B.) [pt

  3. Elemental mercury vapor capture by powdered activated carbon in a fluidized bed reactor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fabrizio Scala; Riccardo Chirone; Amedeo Lancia [Istituto di Ricerche sulla Combustione - CNR, Napoli (Italy)

    2011-06-15

    A bubbling fluidized bed of inert material was used to increase the activated carbon residence time in the reaction zone and to improve its performance for mercury vapor capture. Elemental mercury capture experiments were conducted at 100{sup o}C in a purposely designed 65 mm ID lab-scale pyrex reactor, that could be operated both in the fluidized bed and in the entrained bed configurations. Commercial powdered activated carbon was pneumatically injected in the reactor and mercury concentration at the outlet was monitored continuously. Experiments were carried out at different inert particle sizes, bed masses, fluidization velocities and carbon feed rates. Experimental results showed that the presence of a bubbling fluidized bed led to an increase of the mercury capture efficiency and, in turn, of the activated carbon utilization. This was explained by the enhanced activated carbon loading and gas-solid contact time that establishes in the reaction zone, because of the large surface area available for activated carbon adhesion/deposition in the fluidized bed. Transient mercury concentration profiles at the bed outlet during the runs were used to discriminate between the controlling phenomena in the process. Experimental data have been analyzed in the light of a phenomenological framework that takes into account the presence of both free and adhered carbon in the reactor as well as mercury saturation of the adsorbent. 14 refs., 7 figs.

  4. Prompt gamma-ray activation technique for in-situ analysis of mercury pollution in water

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khouri, M.C.; Jayanthi, K.A.; Pascholati, P.R.

    1995-01-01

    Industrial and mining pollutants discharged into water are in general distributed homogeneously and we investigated a prompt neutron activation technique for the in-situ analysis, to start with of Hg content in water. The laboratory test employed a 252 Cf neutron source (of ∼ 3 x 10 6 n/s fluence) submerged in a test tank of water of ∼ 500 litres, and to monitor the gamma-ray emission a 4 x 4 NaI (Tl) detector system was employed. In 3000 is time interval trials, for a 46 ppm contamination level of Hg, we observed an excess of counts of ∼ 9.2 σ significance in the energy range of 4000-6500 keV, which can be attributed to the presence of mercury. This test system for a 10 hour monitoring can provide a minimum detectable sensitivity at 4.78 ppm. In the future experiments, we propose to replace the NaI(Tl) detector by a HPGe detector to facilitate simultaneous analyses of pollutants such as cadmium, chlorine, chromium etc for detection at few tenths to tens of ppm levels or better. (author). 5 refs., 2 figs., 2 tabs

  5. Interaction of mining activities and aquatic environment: A review from Greek mine sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasileiou, Eleni; Kallioras, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    In Greece a significant amount of mineral and ore deposits have been recorded accompanied by large industrial interest and a long mining history. Today many active and/or abandoned mine sites are scattered within the country; while mining activities take place in different sites for exploiting various deposits (clay, limestone, slate, gypsum, kaolin, mixed sulphide ores (lead, zinc, olivine, pozzolan, quartz lignite, nickel, magnesite, aluminum, bauxite, gold, marbles etc). The most prominent recent ones are: (i) the lignite exploitation that is extended in the area of Ptolemais (Western Macedonia) and Megalopolis (Central Peloponnese); and (ii) the major bauxite deposits located in central Greece within the Parnassos-Ghiona geotectonic zone and on Euboea Island. In the latter area, significant ores of magnesite were exploited and mixed sulphide ores. Centuries of intensive mining exploitation and metallurgical treatment of lead-silver deposits in Greece, have also resulted in significant abandoned sites, such as the one in Lavrion. Mining activities in Lavrio, were initiated in ancient times and continued until the 1980s, resulting in the production of significant waste stockpiles deposited in the area, crucial for the local water resources. Ιn many mining sites, environmental pressures are also recorded after the mine closure to the aquatic environment, as the surface waters flow through waste dump areas and contaminated soils. This paper aims to the geospatial visualization of the mining activities in Greece, in connection to their negative (surface- and/or ground-water pollution; overpumping due to extensive dewatering practices) or positive (enhanced groundwater recharge; pit lakes, improvement of water budget in the catchment scale) impacts on local water resources.

  6. High altitude artisanal small-scale gold mines are hot spots for Mercury in soils and plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Terán-Mita, Tania A.; Faz, Angel; Salvador, Flor; Arocena, Joselito M.; Acosta, Jose A.

    2013-01-01

    Mercury releases from artisanal and small-scale gold mines (ASGM) condense and settle on plants, soils and water bodies. We collected soil and plant samples to add knowledge to the likely transfer of Hg from soils into plants and eventually predict Hg accumulation in livestock around ASGM in Bolivia. Mean contents of Hg in soils range from 0.5 to 48.6 mg Hg kg −1 soil (5× to 60× more compared to control sites) and exceeded the soil Hg threshold levels in some European countries. The Hg contents ranged from 0.6 to 18 and 0.2 to 28.3 mg Hg kg −1 leaf and root, respectively. The high Hg in Poaceae and Rosaceae may elevate Hg accumulation into the food chain because llama and alpaca solely thrive on these plants for food. Erosion of soils around ASGM in Bolivia contributes to the Hg contamination in lower reaches of the Amazon basin. - Highlights: ► Hg in soils ranged from 0.5 to 48.6 mg Hg kg −1 soil, and at least 5× to 60× more than control sites. ► Plants near gold mines exceed the 0.1 mg Hg kg −1 plant material European limit for feed quality. ► Camelids feeding on plants with high Hg may elevate Hg levels in foods (meats) for the miners. ► Soils with high Hg can be significant Hg sources to the contamination of the Amazon basin. - Mean contents of Hg in soils were at least 5× to 60× more compared to Hg in control sites, and the high Hg in Poaceae and Rosaceae may elevate Hg into the food chain.

  7. Mass loads of dissolved and particulate mercury and other trace elements in the Mt. Amiata mining district, Southern Tuscany (Italy)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rimondi, V.; Costagliola, P.; Gray, J.E.; Lattanzi, P.; Nannucci, M.; Paolieri, M.; Salvadori, A.

    2014-01-01

    Total dissolved and particulate mercury (Hg), arsenic (As), and antimony (Sb) mass loads were estimated in different seasons (March and September 2011 and March 2012) in the Paglia River basin (PRB) (central Italy). The Paglia River drains the Mt. Amiata Hg district, one of the largest Hg-rich regions worldwide. Quantification of Hg, As, and Sb mass loads in this watershed allowed (1) identification of the contamination sources, (2) evaluation of the effects of Hg on the environment, and (3) determination of processes affecting Hg transport. The dominant source of Hg in the Paglia River is runoff from Hg mines in the Mt. Amiata region. The maximum Hg mass load was found to be related to runoff from the inactive Abbadia San Salvatore Mine (ASSM), and up to 30 g day−1 of Hg, dominantly in the particulate form, was transported both in high and low flow conditions in 2011. In addition, enrichment factors (EFs) calculated for suspended particulate matter (SPM) were similar in different seasons indicating that water discharge controls the quantities of Hg transported in the PRB, and considerable Hg was transported in all seasons studied. Overall, as much as 11 kg of Hg are discharged annually in the PRB and this Hg is transported downstream to the Tiber River, and eventually to the Mediterranean Sea. Similar to Hg, maximum mass loads for As and Sb were found in March 2011, when as much as 190 g day−1 each of As and Sb were measured from sites downstream from the ASSM. Therefore, the Paglia River represents a significant source of Hg, Sb, and As to the Mediterranean Sea.

  8. Geological and anthropogenic factors influencing mercury speciation in mine wastes: An EXAFS spectroscopy study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, C.S.; Rytuba, J.J.; Brown, Gordon E.

    2004-01-01

    The speciation of Hg is a critical determinant of its mobility, reactivity, and potential bioavailability in mine-impacted regions. Furthermore, Hg speciation in these complex natural systems is influenced by a number of physical, geological, and anthropogenic variables. In order to investigate the degree to which several of these variables may affect Hg speciation, extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) spectroscopy was used to determine the Hg phases and relative proportions of these phases present in Hg-bearing wastes from selected mine-impacted regions in California and Nevada. The geological origin of Hg ore has a significant effect on Hg speciation in mine wastes. Specifically, samples collected from hot-spring Hg deposits were found to contain soluble Hg-chloride phases, while such phases were largely absent in samples from silica-carbonate Hg deposits; in both deposit types, however, Hg-sulfides in the form of cinnabar (HgS, hex.) and metacinnabar (HgS, cub.) dominate. Calcined wastes in which Hg ore was crushed and roasted in excess of 600??C, contain high proportions of metacinnabar while the main Hg-containing phase in unroasted waste rock samples from the same mines is cinnabar. The calcining process is thought to promote the reconstructive phase transformation of cinnabar to metacinnabar, which typically occurs at 345??C. The total Hg concentration in calcines is strongly correlated with particle size, with increases of nearly an order of magnitude in total Hg concentration between the 500-2000 ??m and process, identified the presence of Hg-sulfides and schuetteite (Hg3O2SO4), which may have formed as a result of long-term Hg(0) burial in reducing high-sulfide sediments. ?? 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Determination of mercury in air by adsorption on Hopcalite and by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leyni-Barbaz, D.; Zikovsky, L.; Poissant, L.

    2002-01-01

    A new method for the determination of mercury in air has been developed. It combines the adsorption of mercury on Hopcalite (a material approved for this purpose by the National Institute of Health of the United States) and its quantification by neutron activation. The concentrations of mercury in office air in Montreal, Canada, were determined by instrumental semiabsolute neutron activation analysis. They varied from 39 to 48 ng/m 3 . The results were compared with the concentrations of mercury in office air determined simultaneously at the same place by cold vapour atomic fluorescence spectrophotometry. A close correlation between the results of the 2 methods was obtained. The detection limit of our method is about 14 ng/m 3 . (author)

  10. Spatial distribution of mercury and arsenic levels in water, soil and cassava plants in a community with long history of gold mining in Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyanza, Elias C; Dewey, Deborah; Thomas, Deborah S K; Davey, Mark; Ngallaba, Sospatro E

    2014-12-01

    This study examined the spatial distribution of total mercury (THg) and total arsenic (TAs) in water, soil and cassava (Manihot esculenta) (leaves and roots) samples taken from areas in Rwamagasa village in northwestern Tanzania where daily living activities occur in close proximity to extensive artisanal and small scale gold mining. Results indicated that 33.3 % of the water sources had THg levels above the WHO guideline of 1.0 µg/L for safe drinking water, and 12.5 % had TAs levels above 10 µg/L. Cassava leaves were found to have higher THg (ranging from 8.3 to 167 µg/kg) and TAs (ranging from 60 to 1,120 µg/kg) levels than cassava roots, which ranged between 1.2-8.3 µg/kg for THg and 25-310 µg/kg for TAs. Concentrations of THg and TAs in soil samples ranged between 5.8-1,759 and 183-20,298 µg/kg, respectively. Both THg and TAs were found to be distributed throughout Rwamagasa village.

  11. ISOLATION AND CHARACTERISTIC OF NITROGEN-FIXING BACTERIA AND PHOSPHATE-SOLUBILIZING BACTERIA FROM SOIL HIGH IN MERCURY IN TAILINGS AND COMPOST AREAS OF ARTISANAL GOLD MINE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yulia Nuraini

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The research was conducted at Brawijaya University and West Nusa Tenggara, from March 2013 to October 2013. The tailings areas of the gold mine contains high mercury (Hg as much as 1,090 ppm, and living microbes (resistance exist in a small number in such a condition. Microbial P solvents encountered came from the genus Bacillus with a population of 23 x 103 cfu g-1 and N-fixing bacteria encountered are of the genus Bacillus, with a population of 4 x 103 cfu g-1. Identification of species using Becton Dickinson Phoenix test, both species belong to Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus pumilus. While the waste corn and peanuts that has been composted for 4 weeks acquired P-solubilizing bacteria, such as Enterobacter, Bacillus and Pseudomonas, and N-fixing bacteria found was Pseudomonas and Azotobacter. While testing the activity and antagonism of N-fixing and P-solubilizing bacteria, the result on agar media did not show antagonism in its growth. Bacillus pumilus and Bacillus megaterium effective at 5 % molasses medium with the number of 0.15 x 1012 on seven days of incubation.

  12. Action of mercurials on activity of partially purified soluble protein kinase C from mice brain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Inoue, Y.; Saijoh, K.; Sumino, K.

    1988-01-01

    The enzymatic activity of soluble protein kinase C from mice brain was inhibited by mercuric chloride (II) (HgCl 2 ) and organic mercurials, i.e. methyl mercury, phenyl mercury and p-chloromercuribenzoic acid (PCMB). The IC50 was 0.08 μM for HgCl 2 and about 1 μM for organic mercurials. Sulfhydryl blocking reagents such as 5.5'-dithiobis-2-nitrobenzoic acid (DTNB) and N-ethylmaleimide (NEM) were less potent but nevertheless inhibited the enzymic activity of protein kinase C. The Hill coefficients of HgCl 2 , DTNB and NEM were close to unity whereas the values for organic mercurials were 1.3 to 1.5. The inhibition was of a non-competitive type with respect to Hl histone. 3 H-PDBu binding activity was also inhibited by all of the reagents in a non-competitive manner. Mercurials apparently bind to sulfhydryl groups of protein kinase C to inhibit the enzymatic activity. (author)

  13. Remote Sensing based multi-temporal observation of North Korea mining activities : A case study of Rakyeon mine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, J. H.; Yu, J.; Koh, S. M.; Lee, G.

    2017-12-01

    Mining is a major industrial business of North Korea accounting for significant portion of an export for North Korean economy. However, due to its veiled political system, details of mining activities of North Korea is rarely known. This study investigated mining activities of Rakyeon Au-Ag mine, North Korea based on remote sensing based multi-temporal observation. To monitor the mining activities, CORONA data acquired in 1960s and 1970s, SPOT and Landsat data acquired in 1980s and 1990s and KOMPSAT-2 data acquired in 2010s are utilized. The results show that mining activities of Rakyeon mine continuously carried out for the observation period expanding tailing areas of the mine. However, its expanding rate varies between the period related to North Korea's economic and political situations.

  14. Mercury distribution in coals influenced by magmatic intrusions, and surface waters from the Huaibei Coal Mining District, Anhui, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yan, Zhicao; Liu, Guijian; Sun, Ruoyu; Wu, Dun; Wu, Bin; Zhou, Chuncai

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • Hg concentrations in coal and surface water samples were determined. • Hg is enriched in the Huaibei coals. • Magmatic activities imparted influences on Hg content and distribution. • Hg contents in surface waters are relative low at the present status. - Abstract: The Hg concentrations in 108 samples, comprising 81 coal samples, 1 igneous rock, 2 parting rock samples and 24 water samples from the Huaibei Coal Mining District, China, were determined by cold-vapor atomic fluorescence spectrometry. The abundance and distribution of Hg in different coal mines and coal seams were studied. The weighted average Hg concentration for all coal samples in the Huaibei Coalfield is 0.42 mg/kg, which is about twice that of average Chinese coals. From southwestern to northeastern coalfield, Hg concentration shows a decreasing trend, which is presumably related to magmatic activity and fault structures. The relatively high Hg levels are observed in coal seams Nos. 6, 7 and 10 in the southwestern coal mines. Correlation analysis indicates that Hg in the southwestern and southernmost coals with high Hg concentrations is associated with pyrite. The Hg concentrations in surface waters in the Huaibei Coal Mining District range from 10 to 60 ng/L, and display a decreasing trend with distance from a coal waste pile but are lower than the regulated levels for Hg in drinking water

  15. Radiation exposure levels in phosphate mining activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Othman, I.; Al-Hushari, M.; Raja, G.

    1992-01-01

    Radon, radon daughter concentration and gamma ray exposure rate were measured at different places in the phosphate mining areas of Syria. The grab sampling method was used. For radon measurements, discrete air samples without progeny were collected over short periods of time, whereas daughters were collected on filter paper. A three-count procedure was used for the measurement of radon daughter concentrations to improve accuracy. The measurements were carried out at 37 locations selected in the mines, factories, offices and homes in the mining area. The sampling was repeated monthly for a full calendar year. Workers and their families were classified in different categories according to the nature of their jobs. The doses were estimated using proper occupancy factors. The dose equivalent from radon daughters varies from 1 mSv.y -1 to a maximum of 10 mSv.y -1 . Radon concentrations vary from 100 Bq.m -3 to several hundreds. (author)

  16. Panorama of mining activities in France during 1993-1994

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Michel, J.C.; Bornuat, M.; Heinry, C.; Le Berre, P.

    1995-01-01

    Demand, and thus prices and activities, in the French mining sector continued to suffer from the effects of the 1993 recession. The moderate economic recovery seen in 1994 has not had an immediate impact on the mining industry partly because of previously built up stocks, but some encouraging signs have appeared: a clear resumption of oil exploration, the anti-dumping measures of the European Union, and a new Chinese pricing policy particularly concerning tungsten, antimony and fluorite. In general, French mining continued its decline as illustrated by the closures of further iron, uranium and zinc mines and the loss of all tungsten, bauxite, lead, zinc and germanium mines. The very marked decrease in zinc, silver, uranium, iron and coal production reflects the programmed closure of certain mines. In detail, the balance is more varied and the situation and outlook are not as bleak for all mineral substances: decline is moderate for potassium, barite and fluorite; oil and gas in France and nickel in new Caledonia are stable; sulphur, talc, salt, kaolin, feldspar and silica production have recorded a slight growth while gold is in clear progression. However, these positive aspects cannot counter-balance the lack of significant new resources (hydrocarbons, potassium) and of sufficient exploration effort relative to the stakes (metal ore mines). The end of the National Mineral Inventory in 1993 and the very long procedures for mining permits obtention do not favor national or international private investment. (J.S.). 14 figs., 11 tabs

  17. Human exposure and risk assessment associated with mercury contamination in artisanal gold mining areas in the Brazilian Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castilhos, Zuleica; Rodrigues-Filho, Saulo; Cesar, Ricardo; Rodrigues, Ana Paula; Villas-Bôas, Roberto; de Jesus, Iracina; Lima, Marcelo; Faial, Kleber; Miranda, Antônio; Brabo, Edilson; Beinhoff, Christian; Santos, Elisabeth

    2015-08-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination is an issue of concern in the Amazon region due to potential health effects associated with Hg exposure in artisanal gold mining areas. The study presents a human health risk assessment associated with Hg vapor inhalation and MeHg-contaminated fish ingestion, as well as Hg determination in urine, blood, and hair, of human populations (about 325 miners and 321 non-miners) from two gold mining areas in the Brazilian Amazon (São Chico and Creporizinho, Pará State). In São Chico and Creporizinho, 73 fish specimens of 13 freshwater species, and 161 specimens of 11 species, were collected for total Hg determination, respectively. The hazard quotient (HQ) is a risk indicator which defines the ratio of the exposure level and the toxicological reference dose and was applied to determine the threat of MeHg exposure. The mean Hg concentrations in fish from São Chico and Creporizinho were 0.83 ± 0.43 and 0.36 ± 0.33 μg/g, respectively. More than 60 and 22 % of fish collected in São Chico and Creporizinho, respectively, were above the Hg limit (0.5 μg/g) recommended by WHO for human consumption. For all sampling sites, HQ resulted from 1.5 to 28.5, except for the reference area. In Creporizinho, the values of HQ are close to 2 for most sites, whereas in São Chico, there is a hot spot of MeHg contamination in fish (A2-São Chico Reservoir) with the highest risk level (HQ = 28) associated with its human consumption. Mean Hg concentrations in urine, blood, and hair samples indicated that the miners group (in São Chico: urine = 17.37 μg/L; blood = 27.74 μg/L; hair = 4.50 μg/g and in Creporizinho: urine = 13.75 μg/L; blood = 25.23 μg/L; hair: 4.58 μg/g) was more exposed to mercury compared to non-miners (in São Chico: urine = 5.73 μg/L; blood = 16.50 μg/L; hair = 3.16 μg/g and in Creporizinho: urine = 3.91 μg/L; blood = 21.04 μg/L, hair = 1.88 μg/g). These high Hg levels (found

  18. A rapid neutron activation method for the determination of traces of mercury. The mercury content of biological material of differing geographical and chronological origin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rohde, H.

    1975-08-01

    A rapid method based on activation analysis has been developed for the determination of mercury in biological material. The method employs the delayed gamma rays as prompt gamma rays have been shown to display insufficient sensitivity. The mercury content of 182 fish derived from the waters of the region of South Western Germany has been determined. Relatively high concentrations (> 1 ppm) have been measured in the muscle of Rhine fish. Similar mercury contents have been observed in aged biological material (birds feathers and human hair) and contemporary living organisms. (orig.) [de

  19. Evaluation of mercury levels in sediment and soil samples from Vila Nova river basin, in Amapa State, Brazil, using radiochemical neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goncalves, C.; Favaro, D.I.T.; Vasconcellos, M.B.A.; Guimaraes, J.R.D.; Forti, M.C.

    2000-01-01

    Results from a survey on mercury concentration in sediments and soils from a gold mining area along the Vila Nova river, in Amapa State, Brazil, are presented. These values were compared with those from the Igarape Pedra Preta basin, an area unaffected by mining activities. Total mercury contents were determined in the muddy (silt+clay) fraction of the sediments and in the -1 for soils and 14 μg x kg -1 for sediments when 200 mg of sample were analysed. The Hg results obtained from a comparison between our current method (RNAA) and CV AAS are also presented. Mercury levels showed to be very high in the soils and sediments collected in the Vila Nova river (up to 2 mg x kg -1 ) when compared to background values (0.3 mg x kg -1 ) for this region. An enrichment factor was calculated, using Al as a normalizing factor. It showed values up to 8 in sediments of the Vila Nova river basin, indicating a relatively high degree of pollution as compared to the values of about 1 for the samples of the Igarape Pedra Preta basin. (author)

  20. Determination of Chemical States of Mercury on Activated Carbon Using XANES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takaoka, Masaki; Takeda, Nobuo; Oshita, Kazuyuki; Yamamoto, Takashi; Tanaka, Tsunehiro; Uruga, Tomoya

    2007-01-01

    Although the adsorption of mercury vapor onto activated carbon is a widely used technology to prevent environmental release, the adsorption mechanism is not clearly understood. In this study, we determined the chemical states of mercury on two kinds of activated carbon using X-ray absorption near-edge spectroscopy (XANES) to elucidate the adsorption mechanism. The adsorption experiments of elemental mercury onto activated carbon were conducted under air and nitrogen atmospheres at temperatures of 20 and 160 deg. C. Two types of activated carbon were prepared. X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS) measurements were carried out on beamline BL01B1 at SPring-8. Hg-LIII edge XANES spectra suggested that chemical adsorption of elemental mercury on the activated carbon occurred in the 20-160 deg. C temperature range. According to the XANES spectra, a difference occurred in the chemical states of mercury between AC no. 1 and AC no. 2. The Hg XANES spectra on AC no. 1 were similar to those of Hg2Cl2 and HgS, and the Hg XANES spectra on AC no. 2 were similar to that of HgO, which suggested that nitric acid treatment removed sulfur from AC no. 1 and functional groups that were strong oxidizers on the surface of AC no. 2 created HgO. According to the EXAFS oscillation, a difference occurred in the chemical states of mercury on AC no. 1 between 20 and 160 deg. C. We found that impurities and oxidant functional groups on activated carbon play key roles in mercury adsorption

  1. Effect of bleaching on mercury release from amalgam fillings and antioxidant enzyme activities: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cakir, Filiz Yalcin; Ergin, Esra; Gurgan, Sevil; Sabuncuoglu, Suna; Arpa, Cigdem Sahin; Tokgoz, İlknur; Ozgunes, Hilal; Kiremitci, Arlin

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this pilot clinical study was to determine the mercury release from amalgam fillings and antioxidant enzyme activities (Superoxide Dismutase [SOD] and Catalase[CAT] ) in body fluids after exposure to two different vital tooth bleaching systems. Twenty eight subjects with an average age of 25.6 years (18-41) having at least two but not more than four Class II amalgam fillings on each quadrant arch in the mouth participated in the study. Baseline concentrations of mercury levels in whole blood, urine, and saliva were measured by a Vapor Generation Accessory connected to an Atomic Absorption Spectrometer. Erythrocyte enzymes, SOD, and CAT activities in blood were determined kinetically. Subjects were randomly assigned to two groups of 14 volunteers. Group 1 was treated with an at-home bleaching system (Opalescence PF 35% Carbamide Peroxide, Ultradent), and Group 2 was treated with a chemically activated office bleaching system (Opalescence Xtra Boost 38% Hydrogen Peroxide, Ultradent) according to the manufacturer's recommendations. Twenty-four hours after bleaching treatments, concentrations of mercury and enzymes were remeasured. There were no significant differences on mercury levels in blood, urine, and saliva before and after bleaching treatments (p > 0.05). No differences were also found in the level of antioxidant enzyme activities (SOD and CAT) before and after treatments (p > 0.05). Mercury release did not affect the enzyme activities (p > 0.05). Bleaching treatments either office or home did not affect the amount of mercury released from amalgam fillings in blood, urine, and saliva and the antioxidant-enzyme activities in blood. Bleaching treatments with the systems tested in this pilot study have no deleterious effect on the mercury release from amalgam fillings and antioxidant enzymes in body fluids. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. A global ocean inventory of anthropogenic mercury based on water column measurements

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lamborg, C.H.; Hammerschmidt, C.R.; Bowman, K.L.; Swarr, G.J.; Munson, K.M.; Ohnemus, D.C.; Lam, P.L.; Heimbürger, L.-E.; Rijkenberg, M.J.A.; Saito, M.A.

    2014-01-01

    Mercury is a toxic, bioaccumulating trace metal whose emissions to the environment have increased significantly as a result of anthropogenic activities such as mining and fossil fuel combustion. Several recent models have estimated that these emissions have increased the oceanic mercury inventory by

  3. Laying Waste to Mercury: Inexpensive Sorbents Made from Sulfur and Recycled Cooking Oils

    OpenAIRE

    Worthington, Max J. H.; Kucera, Renata L.; Albuquerque, Inês S.; Gibson, Christopher T.; Sibley, Alexander; Slattery, Ashley D.; Campbell, Jonathan A.; Alboaiji, Salah F. K.; Muller, Katherine A.; Young, Jason; Adamson, Nick; Gascooke, Jason R.; Jampaiah, Deshetti; Sabri, Ylias M.; Bhargava, Suresh K.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Mercury pollution threatens the environment and human health across the globe. This neurotoxic substance is encountered in artisanal gold mining, coal combustion, oil and gas refining, waste incineration, chloralkali plant operation, metallurgy, and areas of agriculture in which mercury‐rich fungicides are used. Thousands of tonnes of mercury are emitted annually through these activities. With the Minamata Convention on Mercury entering force this year, increasing regulation of mercu...

  4. Global Trends in Mercury Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Kyunghee

    2012-01-01

    The United Nations Environmental Program Governing Council has regulated mercury as a global pollutant since 2001 and has been preparing the mercury convention, which will have a strongly binding force through Global Mercury Assessment, Global Mercury Partnership Activities, and establishment of the Open-Ended Working Group on Mercury. The European Union maintains an inclusive strategy on risks and contamination of mercury, and has executed the Mercury Export Ban Act since December in 2010. The US Environmental Protection Agency established the Mercury Action Plan (1998) and the Mercury Roadmap (2006) and has proposed systematic mercury management methods to reduce the health risks posed by mercury exposure. Japan, which experienced Minamata disease, aims vigorously at perfection in mercury management in several ways. In Korea, the Ministry of Environment established the Comprehensive Plan and Countermeasures for Mercury Management to prepare for the mercury convention and to reduce risks of mercury to protect public health. PMID:23230466

  5. Sorption of mercury by activated carbon in the presence of flue gas components

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diamantopoulou, Ir.; Skodras, G.; Sakellaropoulos, G.P.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of the current study is to evaluate the mercury removal ability of F400 and Norit FGD activated carbons, through fixed bed adsorption tests at inert atmosphere (Hg + N 2 ). Additionally, adsorption tests were realized on F400 activated carbon, in the presence of HCl, O 2 , SO 2 and CO 2 in nitrogen flow. The obtained results, revealed that F400 activated carbon, with a high-developed micropore structure and increased BET area, exhibit larger Hg adsorptive capacity compared to Norit. HCl and O 2 , can strongly affect mercury adsorption, owing to heterogeneous oxidation and chemisorption reactions, which is in accordance with the assumptions of some researchers. Additionally, SO 2 presence enhances mercury adsorption, in contrast with the conclusions evaluated in other studies. The above result could be attributed to the possible formation of sulphur spaces on activated carbon surface and consist of a clarification for the role of SO 2 on mercury adsorption. On the contrary, the mercury adsorption efficiency of F400 activated carbon showed a decrease at about 25%, with increasing CO 2 concentration from 0 to 12%. (author)

  6. Sorption of mercury by activated carbon in the presence of flue gas components

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Diamantopoulou, Ir. [Chemical Process Engineering Laboratory, Department of Chemical Engineering, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki (Greece); Skodras, G. [Institute for Solid Fuels Technology and Applications, Ptolemais (Greece); Sakellaropoulos, G.P. [Chemical Process Engineering Laboratory, Department of Chemical Engineering, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki (Greece); Laboratory of Energy and Environmental Processes, Chemical Process Engineering Research Institute, Thessaloniki (Greece)

    2010-02-15

    The purpose of the current study is to evaluate the mercury removal ability of F400 and Norit FGD activated carbons, through fixed bed adsorption tests at inert atmosphere (Hg + N{sub 2}). Additionally, adsorption tests were realized on F400 activated carbon, in the presence of HCl, O{sub 2}, SO{sub 2} and CO{sub 2} in nitrogen flow. The obtained results, revealed that F400 activated carbon, with a high-developed micropore structure and increased BET area, exhibit larger Hg adsorptive capacity compared to Norit. HCl and O{sub 2}, can strongly affect mercury adsorption, owing to heterogeneous oxidation and chemisorption reactions, which is in accordance with the assumptions of some researchers. Additionally, SO{sub 2} presence enhances mercury adsorption, in contrast with the conclusions evaluated in other studies. The above result could be attributed to the possible formation of sulphur spaces on activated carbon surface and consist of a clarification for the role of SO{sub 2} on mercury adsorption. On the contrary, the mercury adsorption efficiency of F400 activated carbon showed a decrease at about 25%, with increasing CO{sub 2} concentration from 0 to 12%. (author)

  7. THE EFFECT OF ACTIVATED CARBON SURFACE MOISTURE ON LOW TEMPERATURE MERCURY ADSORPTION

    Science.gov (United States)

    Experiments with elemental mercury (Hg0) adsorption by activated carbons were performed using a bench-scale fixed-bed reactor at room temperature (27 degrees C) to determine the role of surface moisture in capturing Hg0. A bituminous-coal-based activated carbon (BPL) and an activ...

  8. Substance Flow Analysis of Mercury in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hui, L. M.; Wang, S.; Zhang, L.; Wang, F. Y.; Wu, Q. R.

    2015-12-01

    In previous studies, the emission of anthropogenic atmospheric Hg in China as well as single sector have been examined a lot. However, there might have been more Hg released as solid wastes rather than air. Hg stored in solid wastes may be released to air again when the solid wastes experience high temperature process or cause local pollution if the solid wastes are stacked casually for a long time. To trace the fate of Hg in China, this study developed the substance flow of Hg in 2010 covering all the sectors summarized in table 1. Below showed in Figure 1, the total Hg input is 2825t. The unintentional input of Hg, mined Hg, and recycled Hg account for 57%, 32% and 11% respectively. Figure 2 provides the detail information of substance flow of Hg. Byproducts from one sector may be used as raw materials of another, causing cross Hg flow between sectors. The Hg input of cement production is 303 t, of which 34% comes from coal and limestone, 33% comes from non-ferrous smelting, 23% comes from coal combustion, 7% comes from iron and steel production and 3% comes from mercury mining. Hg flowing to recycledHg production is 639 t, mainly from Hg contained in waste active carbon and mercuric chloride catalyst from VCM production and acid sludge from non-ferrous smelting. There are 20 t mercury flowing from spent mercury adding products to incineration. Figure1 and Figure 2 also show that 46% of the output Hg belongs to "Lagged release", which means this part of mercury might be released later. The "Lagged release" Hg includes 809 t Hg contained in stacked byproducts form coal combustion, non-ferrous smelting, iron and steel production, Al production, cement production and mercury mining, 161t Hg stored in the pipeline of VCM producing, 10 t Hg in fluorescent lamps that are in use and 314 t mercury stored in materials waiting to be handled with in recycled mercury plants. There is 112 t Hg stored in landfill and 129 t Hg exported abroad with the export of mercury adding

  9. Responsible Development of AREVA's Mining Activities - Report 2012

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2013-09-01

    By defining AREVA's strategy and policies, this report aims to demonstrate the company's performance in the key areas of mining activity responsibility: ethics and governance, social report, the environment, occupational health and safety, community involvement, commitments to stakeholders. The data given cover the assets for which AREVA acts as operator in uranium mining activities: exploration, project development, production and rehabilitation. The consolidated data target activities in France, Canada, Niger, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Gabon and Namibia. Activities in the Central African Republic and those linked to La Mancha no longer fall within the scope of this report (sale of assets in 2012). This report is the third edition of this annual exercise

  10. Sorption of Heavy Metals from Mine Wastewater by Activated ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A study on sorption of heavy metal ions: Lead (Pb2+), Copper (Cu2+) and Cadmium (Cd2+) from mine wastewater by activated carbons prepared from coconut husk was conducted. The activated carbons were prepared by carbonisation of the husk at 900 ºC pyrolysis temperature, followed by steam activation of the ...

  11. Panorama of mining activities in France during 1995

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Michel, J.C.; Bornuat, M.; Mouron, R.

    1996-01-01

    The French mining industry in 1995 continued to follow the overall trend of the past 5 to 10 years characterized mainly by: 1)a decline in the production of most energy materials: oil, coal, uranium. This decline will probably be further accentuated over the next two years with the planned closure of Lodeve (U), Forbach, La Mure and Carmaux (coal). Gas production, however, has remained relatively stable at 4.7 to 5 billion m''3 per year. 2)a scarcity of metal ore mines in Metropolitan France 3)an increase in the production of gold that, in 1995, came close to 6 tonnes in Metropolitan France and reached 8.4 tonnes with French Guiana. 4)the development of metal ore mining in the DOM-TOM 5) divergent developments in the industrial mineral sector: downward trends for sulfur, talc, andalusite, diatomite and silica; upward trends for kaolin, mica, feldspar and salt. Although overall the decline in mine production continued, the panorama does include some positive aspects: 1)France's independence in the energy sector exceeded the half-way mark two years ago and 1995 saw an appreciable decrease in the nation's energy bill compared to 1994. 2)French companies involved in metal mining have adapted themselves to world trends: Cogema has diversified its uranium sources mainly through its mining interests in Canada; Eramet has strengthened its activities by becoming the majority shareholder of Comilog, a manganese producer in Gabon. France also has mining interests in Africa, South America and Europe through LaSource Compagnie Miniere (BRGM and Normandy) created in 1995 3) France's position and production in the industrial mineral sector are significant at European scale, if not at world scale, as regards andalusite, diatomite, kaolin, mica, feldspar, sulfur, potassium, salt and industrial silica. Finally, mention must be made of the increasing environmental awareness by the French authorities and mining companies. This has resulted in a major rehabilitation of mine sites by

  12. Mercury bioaccumulation in fish in a region affected by historic gold mining; the South Yuba River, Deer Creek, and Bear River watersheds, California, 1999

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, Jason T.; Hothem, Roger L.; Alpers, Charles N.; Law, Matthew A.

    2000-01-01

    Mercury that was used historically for gold recovery in mining areas of the Sierra Nevada continues to enter local and downstream water bodies, including the Sacramento Delta and the San Francisco Bay of northern California. Methylmercury is of particular concern because it is the most prevalent form of mercury in fish and is a potent neurotoxin that bioaccumulates at successive trophic levels within food webs. In April 1999, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with several other agencies the Forest Service (U.S. Department of Agriculture), the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the California State Water Resources Control Board, and the Nevada County Resource Conservation District began a pilot investigation to characterize the occurrence and distribution of mercury in water, sediment, and biota in the South Yuba River, Deer Creek, and Bear River watersheds of California. Biological samples consisted of semi-aquatic and aquatic insects, amphibians, bird eggs, and fish. Fish were collected from 5 reservoirs and 14 stream sites during August through October 1999 to assess the distribution of mercury in these watersheds. Fish that were collected from reservoirs included top trophic level predators (black basses, Micropterus spp.) intermediate trophic level predators [sunfish (blue gill, Lepomis macrochirus; green sunfish, Lepomis cyanellus; and black crappie, Poxomis nigromaculatus)] and benthic omnivores (channel catfish, Ictularus punctatus). At stream sites, the species collected were upper trophic level salmonids (brown trout, Salmo trutta) and upper-to-intermediate trophic level salmonids (rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss). Boneless and skinless fillet portions from 161 fish were analyzed for total mercury; 131 samples were individual fish, and the remaining 30 fish were combined into 10 composite samples of three fish each of the same species and size class. Mercury concentrations in samples of black basses

  13. Impact of mining activities on water resources in the vicinity of the Obuasi Mine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akabzaa, T.M.; Banoeng-Yakubo, B.K.; Sekyire, J.S.

    2007-01-01

    Surface and groundwater samples within the catchment area of the Obuasi mine were analysed to assess the impact of mining activities on water resources. The concentration of Fe, Mn, Cu, Zn, Pb, Cd, Hg, As and selected major ions in water samples were analysed to assess their role in the contamination of both surface and ground water. The mineralogical composition of various mine spoil and rock samples was investigated by microprobe analysis to ascertain the possible sources of the metals in drainage and ground water. The hydrochemical analytical study, using standard methods, shows that streams in the study area have higher trace and major ions loading than ground water with iron and arsenic concentrations ranging from 0.025 mg/l to 17.19 mg/l and < 0.001 mg/l to 18.91 mg/l, respectively. Hydrochemical modeling of water types showed varied composition for both ground and surface water, but with strong indication of mixed waters from a variety of sources. The microprobe results showed that waste rocks and related mine spoil contain a variety of Fe, Cu, As, Sb, Zn and co-bearing sulphides with strong compositional variations, and account for the augmented levels of these metals in drainage proximal to mining and processing facilities. The probe results did not show Hg in mine spoil, and very high Hg values observed in the vicinity of areas of intense illegal small-scale mining are attributed to the use of this chemical by miners in gold amalgamation. (au)

  14. Case studies: Mining and milling activities - South African facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Metcalf, P.E.; Woude, S. van der

    2000-01-01

    The mining and milling of minerals is a very important industry in South Africa that employs more than 300,000 people. South Africa extracts minerals with naturally occurring radionuclides, amongst which uranium, monazite and zircon. Two case studies involving environmental restoration activities that are typically associated with mining and minerals processing are discussed. The first case study, Katdoringbos, describes the restoration of a contaminated site where scrap material originating from the mining and minerals processing facilities had been recycled. The other case study, Crown 4, deals with the restoration of a contaminated site where a mine tailings dam had been removed and the owner of the land wished to develop it for commercial exploitation. (author)

  15. Evaluation of activated carbon for control of mercury from coal-fired boilers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miller, S.; Laudal, D.; Dunham, G.

    1995-01-01

    The ability to remove mercury from power plant flue gas may become important because of the Clean Air Act amendments' requirement that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) assess the health risks associated with these emissions. One approach for mercury removal, which may be relatively simple to retrofit, is the injection of sorbents, such as activated carbon, upstream of existing particulate control devices. Activated carbon has been reported to capture mercury when injected into flue gas upstream of a spray dryer baghouse system applied to waste incinerators or coal-fired boilers. However, the mercury capture ability of activated carbon injected upstream of an electrostatic precipitator (ESP) or baghouse operated at temperatures between 200 degrees and 400 degrees F is not well known. A study sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Electric power Research Institute is being conducted at the University of North Dakota Energy ampersand Environmental Research Center (EERC) to evaluate whether mercury control with sorbents can be a cost-effective approach for large power plants. Initial results from the study were reported last year. This paper presents some of the recent project results. Variables of interest include coal type, sorbent type, sorbent addition rate, collection media, and temperature

  16. Evaluation of activated carbon for control of mercury from coal-fired boilers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, S.; Laudal, D.; Dunham, G. [Univ. of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND (United States)

    1995-11-01

    The ability to remove mercury from power plant flue gas may become important because of the Clean Air Act amendments` requirement that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) assess the health risks associated with these emissions. One approach for mercury removal, which may be relatively simple to retrofit, is the injection of sorbents, such as activated carbon, upstream of existing particulate control devices. Activated carbon has been reported to capture mercury when injected into flue gas upstream of a spray dryer baghouse system applied to waste incinerators or coal-fired boilers. However, the mercury capture ability of activated carbon injected upstream of an electrostatic precipitator (ESP) or baghouse operated at temperatures between 200{degrees} and 400{degrees}F is not well known. A study sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Electric power Research Institute is being conducted at the University of North Dakota Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) to evaluate whether mercury control with sorbents can be a cost-effective approach for large power plants. Initial results from the study were reported last year. This paper presents some of the recent project results. Variables of interest include coal type, sorbent type, sorbent addition rate, collection media, and temperature.

  17. Application of organic matter to enhance phytoremediation of mercury contaminated soils using local plant species: a case study on small-scale gold mining locations in Banyuwangi of East Java

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Muddarisna

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The discharge of small-scale gold mine tailing to agricultural lands at Pesanggaran village of Banyuwangi Regency caused soil degradation as indicated by reduced crop production. This soil degradation is mainly due to the toxicity of mercury contained in the tailing. The purpose of this study was to explore the potential of three local plant species, i.e. Lindernia crustacea, Digitaria radicosa, and Cyperus kyllingia for phytoremediation of agricultural land contaminated gold mine waste containing mercury, and its influence on the growth of maize. Six treatments (three plant species, and two levels of organic matter application were arranged in a randomized block design with three replicates. Maize was grown on soil after phytoremediation for 8 weeks. The results showed that among the three plant species tested, Cyperus kyllingia was the potential candidate plant species for phytoremediation of soil contaminated with gold mine tailing containing mercury because of its ability to accumulate mercury from 32.06 to 73.90 mg / kg of soil in 60 days. Phytoremediation of mercury contaminated soil using Cyperus kyllingia using increased maize yield by 126% compared to that the biomass yield of maize grown on soil without phytoremediation. Induce phytoremediation needs to be carried out to accelerate the process of remediation of mercury contaminated soils

  18. Responsible Development of Areva's Mining Activities. 2010 report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2010-01-01

    After a map indicating the location of the main Areva's mining sites, this report provides several key figures and data and discusses the evolution of this activity which is part of the business core of the AREVA company. It gives a statement of values and principles, governance and commitments related to this activity. In order to report this activity, it addresses several topics: reduction of industrial risks, protection of workers and populations, rational consumption of water and energy resources, biodiversity preservation, management over time of waste rock and mining tailings, sustainable integration into territories, and contribution to social development. This document is proposed in French and in English

  19. Acid mine drainage arising from gold mining activity in Johannesburg, South Africa and environs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naicker, K.; Cukrowska, E.; McCarthy, T.S.

    2003-01-01

    Ground water within the mining district is heavily contaminated and acidified. - The Witwatersrand region of South Africa is famous for its gold production and a major conurbation, centred on Johannesburg, has developed as a result of mining activity. A study was undertaken of surface and ground water in a drainage system in this area. Soils were also analysed from a site within the mining district. This study revealed that the ground water within the mining district is heavily contaminated and acidified as a result of oxidation of pyrite (FeS 2 ) contained within mine tailings dumps, and has elevated concentrations of heavy metals. Where the water table is close to surface, the upper 20 cm of soil profiles are severely contaminated by heavy metals due to capillary rise and evaporation of the ground water. The polluted ground water is discharging into streams in the area and contributes up to 20% of stream discharge, causing a lowering of pH of the stream water. Much of the metal load is precipitated in the stream: Fe and Mn precipitate as a consequence of oxidation, while other heavy metals are being removed by co-precipitation. The oxidation of iron has created a redox buffer which controls the pH of the stream water. The rate of oxidation and of dilution is slow and the deleterious effect of the addition of contaminated water persists for more than 10 km beyond the source

  20. Neutron activation analysis of manganese-mercury telluride

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sadykov, I. I.

    2003-01-01

    The triple semiconductor compound Mn x Hg 1-x Te is a worthwhile material for the development of infra-red detectors. It's properties, as well as other semiconductors ones depend on impurity elements content. So, analytical Purity control of Mn x Hg 1-x Te is required. Some procedures of the neutron activation analysis of Te[1], Hg [2] and that of their compounds (Cd x Hg 1-x Te [3], for instance) have been developed recently. However, no papers on the NAA of Mn x Hg 1-x Te have been found. This paper describes the procedure of the NAA of Mn x Hg 1-x Te based on anion-exchange chromatographic separation of impurity and matrix elements. Experimental The following reagents were used: commerciality available strongly based anion-exchange resin AW-17 (50-100 meash), hydrochloride hydrasine of analytical grade, solutions of HCl and HNO 3 prepared from concentrated acids of reagent grade. Separation processes were studied by radioactive tracers. The gamma-activity was measured on a HPGe detector GC1518 (efficiency 15 %, resolution 1,7 keV at 1332,5 keV line of 6 0C o) using DSA-1000 digital multichannel analyzer (Canberra, USA). Radioactive tracers were produced by irradiation of metals, salts or oxides of corresponding elements in WWR-SM water-water nuclear reactor. Irradiation of Mn x Hg 1-x Te samples and standards was carried out in a channel of WWR-SM reactor with a neutron flux density of 1.10 14 cm 2 .s -1 for 10 h. Solutions of manganese and mercury were prepared by dissolving their oxides in concentric hydrochloric acid. Solutions of tellurium were prepared by dissolving metallic tellurium in HCl:HNO 3 (3:1) mixture. Solution obtained was evaporated to dryness, the reside was dissolved in conc. HCl. To reduce tellurium to Te(IV) 1-2 mg of hydrazine were dissolved in solution at slight heating. Then, distilled water was added in a required quantities to get a desired concentration of HCl. The chromatographic behaviour of matrix and impurity elements was studied

  1. The landscape degradation in the mining sites with suspended activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anca IONCE

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available The extracting industry, through its extraction activities, of shipping the ores, of breaking the ores, of preparing the practical substances, of stowing the useless rock, of transporting the practical substances, etc. might modify the area’s relief and the quality of ground, of thesurface waters and of the air. Suceava County has an old tradition of mining, where the results of this activity are visible, especially the visual point of view, and where not taking certain measures of ecological remediation will emphasize the disappointing image of the landscape within the areas of mining activity performing.The predominant mountainous landscape, in which mining activities have been held, is being affected also by the abandoned industrial and administrative buildings, in an advanced degradation state.The hydrographic system, very rich in mining areas, has its water quality affected by the acid rock drainage- phenomenon which appeared in many mining waste deposits.

  2. Extraction of gold and mercury from sea water with bismuth diethyldithiocarbamate prior to neutron activation-. gamma. -spectrometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, J.C.; Lo, J.M.; Wai, C.M. (Idaho Univ. Moscow (USA). Dept. of Chemistry)

    1983-11-01

    Gold and mercury in sea water can be selectively extracted by bismuth diethyldithiocarbamate into chloroform at pH <= 1. The matrix species and many other trace elements in the system are effectively removed during extraction. When neutron activation-..gamma..-spectrometry is used, the detection limits for gold and mercury are 0.001 and 0.01 ..mu..g l/sup -1/, respectively. The relative precision is 9% for gold and 13% for mercury.

  3. Determination of mercury in discharge water from plastic manufactory by neutron activation analysis and copper powder adsorption

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Houng-Huei, L [National Tsing Hua University Hsinchu, Taiwan (Republic of China)

    1979-02-28

    Through copper powder adsorption, neutron activation analysis was used to determine the mercury in discharge water from a plastic manufactory where the water samples were taken from various discharge ditches. The experimental results showed that waste water from mercury cells contained 1.7x10/sup -9/ approximately 8.19x10/sup -6/ g Hg/ml while water samples taken from other areas did not show significant mercury level and were below the limit of detection.

  4. Influence of Reservoir Water Level Fluctuations on Sediment Methylmercury Concentrations Downstream of the Historical Black Butte Mercury Mine, OR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercury (Hg) is a pollutant of global concern due to its ability to accumulate as methylmercury (MeHg) in biota. Mercury is methylated by anaerobic microorganisms such as sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) in water and sediment. Throughout North America, reservoirs tend to have e...

  5. Impact of Gold mining activities on the water quality of the lower pra river

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dwamena, Offei Samuel K.

    2013-07-01

    This study was conducted to assess the extent of Mercury (THg) contamination at four locations within the Shama-Mporhor Wassa catchment area of the Lower Pra River. Water, fish and sediment samples were taken twice with the longitudinal transect method at Daboase, Beposo, Bokorkope and Shama during the minor rainy season in October and at the apex of the dry season in March. Careful investigation of the Shama-Mporhor Wassa catchment area revealed that two of the locations Daboase and Beposo had been continuously impacted by the activities of Artisanal Gold miners (AGM). From the study, Total Mercury (THg) levels were found to have persisted in River water several kilometers downstream the second Artisanal Gold mining (AGM) location at Shama estuary for both seasons. Ten trace elements Mercury (Hg), Selenium (Se), Copper (Cu), Chromium (Cr), Lead (Pb), Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn), Nickel (Ni), Zinc (Zn) and Cadmium (Cd) were determined in water, fish and sediment samples using the Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy (AAS) equipped with both Hydride Generation (HGAAS) for Selenium (Se) and Cold Vapour (CVAAS) for Total Mercury (THg). The levels of Total Mercury (THg) were largely above the WHO and USEPA guidelines for drinking water (1μg/L) and sediments (200 μg/Kg) respectively for the four locations investigated. Total Mercury (THg) exceeded the WHO, 2011 guideline value of 0.5 mg/Kg for fish species Clarias submarginatus but was below the guideline value for Xenomystus nigri. Mean concentration of Cd and Fe exceeded the WHO, 2011 guideline values for drinking water for the wet season. The other trace elements Zn, Ni, Cu, Cr, Se, Mn, and Pb had their mean concentration below the WHO, 2011 guideline values for drinking water. Apart from the mean concentration of Cd that exceeded the Canadian Interim Sediment Quality (ISQG) guideline value of 0.6 mg/Kg for the wet season, Cr, Cu, Zn, Ni and Pb were below their respective guideline values for both seasons. Statistical

  6. [Characteristics of mercury pollution in soil and atmosphere in Songhua River upstream Jia-pi-gou gold mining area].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Gang; Wang, Ning; Wang, Yuan; Liu, Te; Ai, Jian-Chao

    2012-09-01

    In the studied area of Jia-pi-gou at the upstream area of Songhua River, algamation process has been applied as a dominant method to extract gold for more than one hundred and eighty years, resulting in severe mercury environmental pollution. The total mercury contents in the atmosphere and soil have been determined by mercury analyzer (Zeeman RA915+) and cold atomic absorption spectrophotometry (GB/T 17136-1997), respectively. To study the pollution characteristics of mercury in the soil and atmosphere, the mercury flux at the interface between the soil and the atmosphere of 4 sampling sites Lao-jin-chang, Er-dao-gou, Er-dao-cha and community of Jia-pi-gou have been determined with the method of dynamic flux chamber. Furthermore, linear regression analyses on the total mercury contents between soil and atmosphere have been carried out and the correlation coefficient of mercury exchange flux between soil and atmosphere and meteorological factors has been studied. The results are as follows: (1) The mean value of mercury content in the atmosphere is (71.08 +/- 38.22) ng x m(-3). (2) The mean value of mercury content in the soil is (0.913 1 +/- 0.040 8) mg x kg(-1); it shows remarkably positive correlation between the mercury contents in soil and in the atmosphere. (3) The mercury exchange flux between soil and atmosphere in different locations are Lao-jin-chang [(129.13 +/- 496.07) ng (m2 x h)(-1)], Er-dao-gou [(98.64 +/- 43.96) ng x (m2 x h)(-1)], Er-dao-cha [(23.17 +/- 171.23) ng x (m2 x h)(-1)], and community of Jia-pi-gou [(7.12 +/- 46.33) ng x (m2 x h)(-1)]. (4) Solar radiation is the major influential factor in the mercury exchange flux between the soil and atmosphere in Lao-jin-chang, Er-dao-cha and community of Jia-pi-gou. Solar radiation, air temperature and soil temperature jointly influence the process of the mercury exchange flux between the soil and atmosphere in Er-dao-gou. Under the disturbance of terrain, three noticeably distinctive trend features

  7. Mercury cycling in a wastewater treatment plant treating waters with high mercury contents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Noguero, Eva M.; García-Noguero, Carolina; Higueras, Pablo; Reyes-Bozo, Lorenzo; Esbrí, José M.

    2015-04-01

    The Almadén mercury mining district has been historically the most important producer of this element since Romans times to 2004, when both mining and metallurgic activities ceased as a consequence both of reserves exhaustion and persistent low prices for this metal. The reclamation of the main dump of the mine in 2007-2008 reduced drastically the atmospheric presence of the gaseous mercury pollutant in the local atmosphere. But still many areas, and in particular in the Almadén town area, can be considered as contaminated, and produce mercury releases that affect the urban residual waters. Two wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) where built in the area in year 2002, but in their design the projects did not considered the question of high mercury concentrations received as input from the town area. This communication presents data of mercury cycling in one of the WWTP, the Almadén-Chillón one, being the larger and receiving the higher Hg concentrations, due to the fact that it treats the waters coming from the West part of the town, in the immediate proximity to the mine area. Data were collected during a number of moments of activity of the plant, since April 2004 to nowadays. Analyses were carried out by means of cold vapor-atomic fluorescence spectroscopy (CV-AFS), using a PSA Millennium Merlin analytical device with gold trap. The detection limit is 0.1 ng/l. The calibration standards are prepared using the Panreac ICP Standard Mercury Solution (1,000±0,002 g/l Hg in HNO3 2-5%). Results of the surveys indicate that mercury concentrations in input and output waters in this plant has suffered an important descent since the cessation of mining and metallurgical activities, and minor reduction also after the reclamation of the main mine's dump. Since 2009, some minor seasonal variations are detected, in particular apparently related to accumulation during summer of mercury salts and particles, which are washed to the plant with the autumn's rains. Further

  8. Determination of mercury in dentists through Neutron activation analysis; Determinacion de mercurio en odontologos mediante Analisis por activacion neutronica

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Padilla M, M.A.; Granados C, F. [Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares, Departamento de Quimica, A.P. 18-1027, C.P. 11801 Mexico D.F. (Mexico)

    2000-07-01

    It was determined the mercury levels in urine through Neutron activation analysis to 25 dentists who have been exposed to mercury by several time periods, because of the routine manipulations of amalgams. The determined concentrations of mercury were less to 10 {mu} g Hg/l of urine. The results were founded inside the safety limits reported in the literature. The mercury levels in the dentists are associated with a wide variety of factors that contribute to their exposure as: number of years of dental practice, number of amalgams manipulated between others. (Author)

  9. Mercury species accumulation and trophic transfer in biological systems using the Almadén mining district (Ciudad Real, Spain) as a case of study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patiño Ropero, M J; Rodríguez Fariñas, N; Mateo, R; Berzas Nevado, J J; Rodríguez Martín-Doimeadios, R C

    2016-04-01

    The impact of mercury (Hg) pollution in the terrestrial environments and the terrestrial food chains including the impact on human food consumption is still greatly under-investigated. In particular, studies including Hg speciation and detoxification strategies in terrestrial animals are almost non-existing, but these are key information with important implications for human beings. Therefore, in this work, we report on Hg species (inorganic mercury, iHg, and monomethylmercury, MeHg) distribution among terrestrial animal tissues obtained from a real-world Hg exposure scenario (Almadén mining district, Spain). Thus, we studied Hg species (iHg and MeHg) and total selenium (Se) content in liver and kidney of red deer (Cervus elaphus; n = 41) and wild boar (Sus scrofa; n = 16). Similar mercury species distribution was found for both red deer and wild boar. Major differences were found between tissues; thus, in kidney, iHg was clearly the predominant species (more than 81%), while in liver, the species distribution was less homogeneous with a percentage of MeHg up to 46% in some cases. Therefore, Hg accumulation and MeHg transfer were evident in terrestrial ecosystems. The interaction between total Se and Hg species has been evaluated by tissue and by animal species. Similar relationships were found in kidney for both Hg species in red deer and wild boar. However, in liver, there were differences between animals. The possible underlying mechanisms are discussed.

  10. Forgotten constructions erected for mining and salt-works activities in Zlatá Baňa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ján Brehuv

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Village Zlatá Baňa is known for the mining activities for gold, silver, mercury and antimony in the past. This article is devoted notto mining activities but to forgotten 2 dams, which were erected on the Delňa brook. The first was constructed above Zlatá Baňa fromwood in 1691 and does not exist presently. The second one was erected beneath Zlatá Baňa between 1802 – 1807 from stone and cementmortar. It exists up to this day but it is not working. The mentioned dams enabled to create water reservoirs. The first one enabled the water transport of wood trunksfrom Žlatá Baňa to Soľná Baňa in 1691 for a mining output of a salt-stone (or stone-salt. In the years 1807-1917, water from the second reservoir enabled the water transport of wood by a wooden flume 18,9 km long from Zlatá Baňa to the salt-works in Solivar. The mentioned dams and their water reservoirs enabled the high economical effectivity of the mining output of salt and salt-production of the salt-works in Solivar.

  11. A retrospective assessment of gold mining in the Reedy Creek sub-catchment, northeast Victoria, Australia: residual mercury contamination 100 years later

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Churchill, R.C.; Meathrel, C.E.; Suter, P.J.

    2004-01-01

    The mining of gold can lead to toxic metals such as mercury (Hg) contaminating watercourses as by-products. The Reedy Creek sub-catchment, in northeast Victoria, Australia, was mined for gold in the 1850s. In 1998, samples were taken from six watercourses to measure any remaining toxic metal contamination in sediments and surface waters from two creeks with no previous gold mining (controls) and four that were mined. Although mean concentrations of Hg (measured using an ICP-OES) in sediments were below worldwide background levels, individual sites along Reedy Creek had slightly elevated Hg concentrations. In contrast, the Hg concentrations in the surface waters were above background levels. Temporal fluxes of very high Hg concentrations in the surface waters during periods of first flow and flood events revealed that Hg concentrations in the surface waters may, at certain times of the year, exceed all Australian and New Zealand Environment and Conservation Council (National Water Quality Management Strategy. Australian Water Quality Guidelines for Fresh and Marine Waters, ANZECC, 2000) guidelines for water use and the protection of the aquatic ecosystem

  12. The Tiptop coal-mine fire, Kentucky: Preliminary investigation of the measurement of mercury and other hazardous gases from coal-fire gas vents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hower, James C.; Henke, Kevin R.; O'Keefe, Jennifer M.K.; Engle, Mark A.; Blake, Donald R.; Stracher, Glenn B.

    2009-01-01

    The Tiptop underground coal-mine fire in the Skyline coalbed of the Middle Pennsylvanian Breathitt Formation was investigated in rural northern Breathitt County, Kentucky, in May 2008 and January 2009, for the purpose of determining the concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), and mercury (Hg) in the vent and for measuring gas-vent temperatures. At the time of our visits, concentrations of CO2 peaked at 2.0% and > 6.0% (v/v) and CO at 600 ppm and > 700 ppm during field analysis in May 2008 and January 2009, respectively. For comparison, these concentrations exceed the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) eight-hour safe exposure limits (0.5% CO2 and 50 ppm CO), although the site is not currently mined. Mercury, as Hg0, in excess of 500 and 2100 μg/m3, in May and January, respectively, in the field, also exceeded the OSHA eight-hour exposure limit (50 μg/m3). Carbonyl sulfide, dimethyl sulfide, carbon disulfide, and a suite of organic compounds were determined at two vents for the first sampling event. All gases are diluted by air as they exit and migrate away from a gas vent, but temperature inversions and other meteorological conditions could lead to unhealthy concentrations in the nearby towns.

  13. Determination of mercury concentration in biological materials by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Munoz, L.; Gras, N.; Cortes, E.; Cassorla, V.

    1983-01-01

    The objective of this work was to obtain a confident analytical method for measuring the mercury concentration in biological materials. Destructive neutron activation analysis was used for this purpose and a radiochemical separation method was studied to isolate the mercury from its main interferences: sodium and phosphorus, because these elements in biological materials are in high concentrations. The method developed was based on the copper amalgamation under controlled conditions. Yield and reproductibility studies were performed using 203 Hg as radioactive tracer. Finally, food samples of regular consumption were analyzed and the results were compared with those recommended by FAO/WHO. (Author)

  14. Determination of x mercury trace amounts in selected foodstuffs by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiranek, V.; Bludovsky, R.

    1976-01-01

    Neutron activation analysis was used for the analysis of dehydrated milk, flour, coffee, tea and rice. The results were compared with those obtained by the photometric determination of mercury by dithizone. Four types of sample distribution by wet ashing were evaluated with regard to mercury volatilization in sample destruction. The samples were irradiated with thermal neutrons, a carrier was added and the samples were dissolved in the mixture of H 2 SO 4 +HClO 4 +HNO 3 . After dilution mercury was extracted using a substoichiometric amount of dithizone dissolved in chloroform. In the extract the radioactivity of 197 Hg was measured by NaI(Tl). At the average 15% accuracy of determination the lower limit of determination is 0.003 μg Hg. (M.K.)

  15. Application of Organic Matter to Enhance Phytoremediation of Mercury Contaminated Soils Using Local Plant Species: a Case Study on Small-scale Gold Mining Locations in Banyuwangi of East Java

    OpenAIRE

    Muddarisna, N; Siahaan, B C

    2014-01-01

    The discharge of small-scale gold mine tailing to agricultural lands at Pesanggaran village of Banyuwangi Regency caused soil degradation as indicated by reduced crop production. This soil degradation is mainly due to the toxicity of mercury contained in the tailing. The purpose of this study was to explore the potential of three local plant species, i.e. Lindernia crustacea, Digitaria radicosa, and Cyperus kyllingia for phytoremediation of agricultural land contaminated gold mine waste conta...

  16. Subcellular Targeting of Methylmercury Lyase Enhances Its Specific Activity for Organic Mercury Detoxification in Plants1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bizily, Scott P.; Kim, Tehryung; Kandasamy, Muthugapatti K.; Meagher, Richard B.

    2003-01-01

    Methylmercury is an environmental pollutant that biomagnifies in the aquatic food chain with severe consequences for humans and other animals. In an effort to remove this toxin in situ, we have been engineering plants that express the bacterial mercury resistance enzymes organomercurial lyase MerB and mercuric ion reductase MerA. In vivo kinetics experiments suggest that the diffusion of hydrophobic organic mercury to MerB limits the rate of the coupled reaction with MerA (Bizily et al., 2000). To optimize reaction kinetics for organic mercury compounds, the merB gene was engineered to target MerB for accumulation in the endoplasmic reticulum and for secretion to the cell wall. Plants expressing the targeted MerB proteins and cytoplasmic MerA are highly resistant to organic mercury and degrade organic mercury at 10 to 70 times higher specific activity than plants with the cytoplasmically distributed wild-type MerB enzyme. MerB protein in endoplasmic reticulum-targeted plants appears to accumulate in large vesicular structures that can be visualized in immunolabeled plant cells. These results suggest that the toxic effects of organic mercury are focused in microenvironments of the secretory pathway, that these hydrophobic compartments provide more favorable reaction conditions for MerB activity, and that moderate increases in targeted MerB expression will lead to significant gains in detoxification. In summary, to maximize phytoremediation efficiency of hydrophobic pollutants in plants, it may be beneficial to target enzymes to specific subcellular environments. PMID:12586871

  17. XAS AND XPS CHARACTERIZATION OF MERCURY BINDING ON BROMINATED ACTIVATED CARBON

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brominated powdered activated carbon sorbents have been shown to e quite effective for mercury capture when injected into the flue gas duct at coal-fired power plants and are especially useful when buring Western low-chlorine subbituminous coals. X-ray absorption spectroscopy (X...

  18. Development of a Cl-impregnated activated carbon for entrained-flow capture of elemental mercury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghorishi, S Behrooz; Keeney, Robert M; Serre, Shannon D; Gullett, Brian K; Jozewicz, Wojciech S

    2002-10-15

    Efforts to discern the role of an activated carbon's surface functional groups on the adsorption of elemental mercury (Hg0) and mercuric chloride demonstrated that chlorine (Cl) impregnation of a virgin activated carbon using dilute solutions of hydrogen chloride leads to increases (by a factor of 2-3) in fixed-bed capture of these mercury species. A commercially available activated carbon (DARCO FGD, NORITAmericas Inc. [FGD])was Cl-impregnated (Cl-FGD) [5 lb (2.3 kg) per batch] and tested for entrained-flow, short-time-scale capture of Hg0. In an entrained flow reactor, the Cl-FGD was introduced in Hg0-laden flue gases (86 ppb of Hg0) of varied compositions with gas/solid contact times of about 3-4 s, resulting in significant Hg0 removal (80-90%), compared to virgin FGD (10-15%). These levels of Hg0 removal were observed across a wide range of very low carbon-to-mercury weight ratios (1000-5000). Variation of the natural gas combustion flue gas composition, by doping with nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide, and the flow reactor temperature (100-200 degrees C) had minimal effects on Hg0 removal bythe Cl-FGD in these carbon-to-mercury weight ratios. These results demonstrate significant enhancement of activated carbon reactivity with minimal treatment and are applicable to combustion facilities equipped with downstream particulate matter removal such as an electrostatic precipitator.

  19. Human Activity Recognition Using Hierarchically-Mined Feature Constellations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oikonomopoulos, A.; Pantic, Maja

    In this paper we address the problem of human activity modelling and recognition by means of a hierarchical representation of mined dense spatiotemporal features. At each level of the hierarchy, the proposed method selects feature constellations that are increasingly discriminative and

  20. Restoration activities in uranium mining and milling facilities in Spain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garcia Quiros, J.M.

    1997-01-01

    From the end of the 80's up to now, several tasks have been carried out in Spain on restoration in the field of uranium mining and milling, significant among them being Andujar Uranium Mill (FUA) closure and La Haba closure. Also, a study has been carried out on restoration of inoperative and abandoned uranium mine sites. At present, detailed plans are being worked out for the project on the closure of the Elefante plant. All activities have been developed in the common framework of national standards and regulations which are generally in compliance with the standards, regulations and recommendations of international organizations. This paper describes briefly the standards and the criteria applied to the restoration tasks at various sites of the uranium mining and milling facilities in Spain. The restoration activities have different characteristics La Haba facility is an isolated and conventional facility to produce uranium concentrate; in the case of old and abandoned uranium mines the intervention criteria is more relevant than the activities to be carried out; the closure (the first phase of licensing) and restoration activities of Elefante plant have to be developed taking into account that it is sited within the area of Quercus plant which is currently in operation. (author)

  1. Mercury contamination and its potential health effects in a lead-zinc mining area in the karst region of Guangxi, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deng Chaobing; Zhang Chaolan; Li Lihe; Li Zhongyi; Li Ning

    2011-01-01

    Research highlights: → Soil in the investigated area is severely contaminated by mercury. → Contamination of T-Hg in paddy field soils is more severe than that in dry land soils. → Vertical distributions of T-Hg are different in the paddy and dry land samples. → T-Hg contents in the agricultural products exceed the Chinese tolerance value. - Abstract: Mercury contamination of the environment is of worldwide concern because of its global presence and its potent neurotoxicity. Mining, smelting and the electronics industry are the main sources of Hg pollution. However, few studies have been performed to investigate systemic Hg contamination in metal mining regions. In this study, concentrations of Hg in air, farmland soil, and crops were measured in a Pb-Zn mining area in the karst region of Guangxi, China. Key factors that could affect Hg distribution, such as the fate of waste ore and waste residue, were analyzed. Geo-statistical methods were adopted to analyze the characteristics of spatial structure and distribution of Hg. The results show that Hg contamination in this region is serious. The total mercury (T-Hg) content is far higher than the Level II Limit Value of Chinese Soil Standards of 0.30 mg kg -1 , showing obvious directional characteristics from WNW to ESE. Highest Hg concentrations were found in the WNW portion of the study area. The contamination of paddy soil is higher than that in dry farmland soil. The vertical distribution of T-Hg and its decrease with depth suggest that the important sources are waste water irrigation and the improper disposal of the waste ore and waste rock. The T-Hg concentrations in the agricultural products examined exceed the Chinese tolerance value (0.02 mg kg -1 for rice and 0.01 mg kg -1 for vegetables), indicating the seriousness of the problem. The ecological environment and the safety of food grown in this mining area are being affected, with the result that human health is possibly being affected.

  2. Mercury contamination and its potential health effects in a lead-zinc mining area in the karst region of Guangxi, China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Deng Chaobing [Guangxi University, Nanning 530001 (China)] [Environmental Monitoring Station of Guangxi, Nanning 530022 (China); Zhang Chaolan, E-mail: zhangcl@gxu.edu.cn [Guangxi University, Nanning 530001 (China); Li Lihe [Environmental Monitoring Station of Guangxi, Nanning 530022 (China); Li Zhongyi [Guangxi University, Nanning 530001 (China); Li Ning [Environmental Monitoring Station of Guangxi, Nanning 530022 (China)

    2011-02-15

    Research highlights: {yields} Soil in the investigated area is severely contaminated by mercury. {yields} Contamination of T-Hg in paddy field soils is more severe than that in dry land soils. {yields} Vertical distributions of T-Hg are different in the paddy and dry land samples. {yields} T-Hg contents in the agricultural products exceed the Chinese tolerance value. - Abstract: Mercury contamination of the environment is of worldwide concern because of its global presence and its potent neurotoxicity. Mining, smelting and the electronics industry are the main sources of Hg pollution. However, few studies have been performed to investigate systemic Hg contamination in metal mining regions. In this study, concentrations of Hg in air, farmland soil, and crops were measured in a Pb-Zn mining area in the karst region of Guangxi, China. Key factors that could affect Hg distribution, such as the fate of waste ore and waste residue, were analyzed. Geo-statistical methods were adopted to analyze the characteristics of spatial structure and distribution of Hg. The results show that Hg contamination in this region is serious. The total mercury (T-Hg) content is far higher than the Level II Limit Value of Chinese Soil Standards of 0.30 mg kg{sup -1}, showing obvious directional characteristics from WNW to ESE. Highest Hg concentrations were found in the WNW portion of the study area. The contamination of paddy soil is higher than that in dry farmland soil. The vertical distribution of T-Hg and its decrease with depth suggest that the important sources are waste water irrigation and the improper disposal of the waste ore and waste rock. The T-Hg concentrations in the agricultural products examined exceed the Chinese tolerance value (0.02 mg kg{sup -1} for rice and 0.01 mg kg{sup -1} for vegetables), indicating the seriousness of the problem. The ecological environment and the safety of food grown in this mining area are being affected, with the result that human health is

  3. DOE/NETL's phase II mercury control technology field testing program: preliminary economic analysis of activated carbon injection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Andrew P; Hoffmann, Jeffrey W; Smith, Dennis N; Feeley, Thomas J; Murphy, James T

    2007-02-15

    Based on results of field testing conducted by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE/NETL), this article provides preliminary costs for mercury control via conventional activated carbon injection (ACI), brominated ACI, and conventional ACI coupled with the application of a sorbent enhancement additive (SEA) to coal prior to combustion. The economic analyses are reported on a plant-specific basis in terms of the cost required to achieve low (50%), mid (70%), and high (90%) levels of mercury removal "above and beyond" the baseline mercury removal achieved by existing emission control equipment. In other words, the levels of mercury control are directly attributable to ACI. Mercury control costs via ACI have been amortized on a current dollar basis. Using a 20-year book life, levelized costs for the incremental increase in cost of electricity (COE), expressed in mills per kilowatt-hour (mills/kWh), and the incremental cost of mercury control, expressed in dollars per pound of mercury removed ($/lb Hg removed), have been calculated for each level of ACI mercury control. For this analysis, the increase in COE varied from 0.14 mills/kWh to 3.92 mills/kWh. Meanwhile, the incremental cost of mercury control ranged from $3810/lb Hg removed to $166000/lb Hg removed.

  4. Salt mine Asse II. Status of the retrieval activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2017-02-01

    The booklet on the status of retrieval activities in the salt mine Asse II includes information on the background of medium-level radioactive waste disposal during 1967 to 1978 on behalf of the Federal government. Since 2009 the former mine is operated by the BfS with the assignment of decommissioning. The potential risk for stability and safety due to problems of water ingress were known before beginning of the disposals. The retrieval of the radioactive waste will require many decades; the costs are financed by tax money. The planning of the retrieval is currently on the way, details of the concept are described.

  5. Health and environmental impact of mercury in the Philippines using nuclear techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cortex-Maramba, Nelia; Trinidad Francisco-Rivera, Ana; Manglicmot, Ailyn; Santos, Flora; Akagi, Hirokatsu

    2001-01-01

    Artisanal gold mining activities using mercury has proliferated in various parts of the country since the early 1980's. In Southern Philippines, it is estimated that a small-scale gold processor utilizes one kilogram of mercury every week or an average of fifty-two kgs./yr. Production is estimated at 30 kilograms of gold per day. It has been estimated that 140 tons of mercury flux have been dumped directly into the river systems from small-scale gold mining operations in one of the gold rush areas in the country. Small-scale mining operations have affected tributaries and water systems in the country that also relies heavily on fishing as a source of livelihood as well as the daily food fare among the low-income sectors in the area. Aside from this, cattle livestock and agricultural production have also been affected by these mining activities because of contamination of the irrigation and water systems. Presently, environmental and health monitoring conducted by several government agencies in the recent past were limited to the determination of total mercury only. Previous studies undertaken focused mainly on the exposure of adults and workers to mercury during mining/processing operations. Environmental quality monitoring showed total mercury sediment levels ranged from 0.55 ug/g dry weight while water samples from river systems exhibited mercury levels from 0.0728-0.0784 ppb. Fish samples collected showed levels ranging from 1.07-438.8 ppb for total mercury and 0.71-377.18 ppb for methyl mercury. Methyl mercury content in fish ranged from 56-99%. Laboratory results showed that total mercury hair samples in schoolchildren ranged from 0.278-20.393 ppm while methyl mercury levels were from 0.191-18.469 ppm. Methyl mercury represented 45.96%-99.81% of the total mercury levels in hair. Total blood mercury levels ranged from 0.757-56.88 ppb while methyl mercury blood levels ranged from 1.36-46.73 ppb. Summary of physical examination results showed that predominant

  6. Impact of oxy-fuel combustion gases on mercury retention in activated carbons from a macroalgae waste: effect of water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez-Anton, M A; Ferrera-Lorenzo, N; Fuente, E; Díaz-Somoano, M; Suarez-Ruíz, I; Martínez-Tarazona, M R; Ruiz, B

    2015-04-01

    The aim of this study is to understand the different sorption behaviors of mercury species on activated carbons in the oxy-fuel combustion of coal and the effect of high quantities of water vapor on the retention process. The work evaluates the interactions between the mercury species and a series of activated carbons prepared from a macroalgae waste (algae meal) from the agar-agar industry in oxy-combustion atmospheres, focussing on the role that the high concentration of water in the flue gases plays in mercury retention. Two novel aspects are considered in this work (i) the impact of oxy-combustion gases on the retention of mercury by activated carbons and (ii) the performance of activated carbons prepared from biomass algae wastes for this application. The results obtained at laboratory scale indicate that the effect of the chemical and textural characteristics of the activated carbons on mercury capture is not as important as that of reactive gases, such as the SOx and water vapor present in the flue gas. Mercury retention was found to be much lower in the oxy-combustion atmosphere than in the O2+N2 (12.6% O2) atmosphere. However, the oxidation of elemental mercury (Hg0) to form oxidized mercury (Hg2+) amounted to 60%, resulting in an enhancement of mercury retention in the flue gas desulfurization units and a reduction in the amalgamation of Hg0 in the CO2 compression unit. This result is of considerable importance for the development of technologies based on activated carbon sorbents for mercury control in oxy-combustion processes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Panorama of mining activities in France during 1991

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heinry, C.; Michel, J.C.

    1992-01-01

    1991 can be considered as year of transition during which the world economy was adapting to the new political situation arising out of the Gulf War and the collapse of the Soviet Bloc. Although a major conflict normally causes a rise in the price of gold and a high demand for base products, this time the raw materials market did not react in the normal way. The prices of almost all products dropped throughout the year, and the dollar increase (average exchange rate for the year = FF 5.65) did not compensate European industry for this drop in metal prices. The economic slowdown in America, Europe and, which is new, Japan, compounded by the consequences of CIS export, caused serious harm to western firms, including those of the European Community: seriously disrupted markets, price falls, production units in danger. The purpose of this paper is to give a panorama of mining activities in France during 1991. The French mineral sector continued with difficulty to adjust to the economic trend through reductions in staff and production capacities: the Malines Zn-Pb mine closed, uranium mines in the Vendee and Limousin closed, mining activities at the Salsigne gold mine and its refining plants stopped. The field of energy supplies saw a fall off in both coal and petroleum production. Gas production, however, rose to a level close to that of 1987. Uranium production continued to ease; in spite of a relatively stable demand, poor prices coupled with the exhaustion of certain deposits and the public's preoccupation with preserving the environment, led to mines being closed. 15 refs., 2 figs., 11 tabs

  8. The Tiptop coal-mine fire, Kentucky: Preliminary investigation of the measurement of mercury and other hazardous gases from coal-fire gas vents

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hower, James C.; Henke, Kevin [University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research, Lexington, KY 40511 (United States); O' Keefe, Jennifer M.K. [Morehead State University, Morehead, KY 40351 (United States); Engle, Mark A. [U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA 20192 (United States); Blake, Donald R. [Department of Chemistry, University of California - Irvine, Irvine, CA 92697 (United States); Stracher, Glenn B. [East Georgia College, Swainsboro, GA 30401 (United States)

    2009-10-01

    The Tiptop underground coal-mine fire in the Skyline coalbed of the Middle Pennsylvanian Breathitt Formation was investigated in rural northern Breathitt County, Kentucky, in May 2008 and January 2009, for the purpose of determining the concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}), carbon monoxide (CO), and mercury (Hg) in the vent and for measuring gas-vent temperatures. At the time of our visits, concentrations of CO{sub 2} peaked at 2.0% and > 6.0% (v/v) and CO at 600 ppm and > 700 ppm during field analysis in May 2008 and January 2009, respectively. For comparison, these concentrations exceed the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) eight-hour safe exposure limits (0.5% CO{sub 2} and 50 ppm CO), although the site is not currently mined. Mercury, as Hg{sup 0}, in excess of 500 and 2100 {mu}g/m{sup 3}, in May and January, respectively, in the field, also exceeded the OSHA eight-hour exposure limit (50 {mu}g/m{sup 3}). Carbonyl sulfide, dimethyl sulfide, carbon disulfide, and a suite of organic compounds were determined at two vents for the first sampling event. All gases are diluted by air as they exit and migrate away from a gas vent, but temperature inversions and other meteorological conditions could lead to unhealthy concentrations in the nearby towns. Variation in gas temperatures, nearly 300 C during the January visit to the fire versus < 50 C in May, demonstrates the large temporal variability in fire intensity at the Tiptop mine. These preliminary results suggest that emissions from coal fires may be important, but additional data are required that address the reasons for significant variations in the composition, flow, and temperature of vent gases. (author)

  9. Laying Waste to Mercury: Inexpensive Sorbents Made from Sulfur and Recycled Cooking Oils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Worthington, Max J H; Kucera, Renata L; Albuquerque, Inês S; Gibson, Christopher T; Sibley, Alexander; Slattery, Ashley D; Campbell, Jonathan A; Alboaiji, Salah F K; Muller, Katherine A; Young, Jason; Adamson, Nick; Gascooke, Jason R; Jampaiah, Deshetti; Sabri, Ylias M; Bhargava, Suresh K; Ippolito, Samuel J; Lewis, David A; Quinton, Jamie S; Ellis, Amanda V; Johs, Alexander; Bernardes, Gonçalo J L; Chalker, Justin M

    2017-11-16

    Mercury pollution threatens the environment and human health across the globe. This neurotoxic substance is encountered in artisanal gold mining, coal combustion, oil and gas refining, waste incineration, chloralkali plant operation, metallurgy, and areas of agriculture in which mercury-rich fungicides are used. Thousands of tonnes of mercury are emitted annually through these activities. With the Minamata Convention on Mercury entering force this year, increasing regulation of mercury pollution is imminent. It is therefore critical to provide inexpensive and scalable mercury sorbents. The research herein addresses this need by introducing low-cost mercury sorbents made solely from sulfur and unsaturated cooking oils. A porous version of the polymer was prepared by simply synthesising the polymer in the presence of a sodium chloride porogen. The resulting material is a rubber that captures liquid mercury metal, mercury vapour, inorganic mercury bound to organic matter, and highly toxic alkylmercury compounds. Mercury removal from air, water and soil was demonstrated. Because sulfur is a by-product of petroleum refining and spent cooking oils from the food industry are suitable starting materials, these mercury-capturing polymers can be synthesised entirely from waste and supplied on multi-kilogram scales. This study is therefore an advance in waste valorisation and environmental chemistry. © 2017 The Authors. Published by Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.

  10. Mining the active proteome of Arabidopsis thaliana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renier A. L. Van Der Hoorn

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Assigning functions to the >30.000 proteins encoded by the Arabidopsis genome is a challenging task of the Arabidopsis Functional Genomics Network. Although genome-wide technologies like proteomics and transcriptomics have generated a wealth of information that significantly accelerated gene annotation, protein activities are poorly predicted by transcript or protein levels as protein activities are post-translationally regulated. To directly display protein activities in Arabidopsis proteomes, we developed and applied Activity-based Protein Profiling (ABPP. ABPP is based on the use of small molecule probes that react with the catalytic residues of distinct protein classes in an activity-dependent manner. Labeled proteins are separated and detected from proteins gels and purified and identified by mass spectrometry. Using probes of six different chemotypes we have displayed of activities of 76 Arabidopsis proteins. These proteins represent over ten different protein classes that contain over 250 Arabidopsis proteins, including cysteine- serine- and metallo-proteases, lipases, acyltransferases, and the proteasome. We have developed methods for identification of in vivo labeled proteins using click-chemistry and for in vivo imaging with fluorescent probes. In vivo labeling has revealed novel protein activities and unexpected subcellular activities of the proteasome. Labeling of extracts displayed several differential activities e.g. of the proteasome during immune response and methylesterases during infection. These studies illustrate the power of ABPP to display the functional proteome and testify to a successful interdisciplinary collaboration involving chemical biology, organic chemistry and proteomics.

  11. Adsorption of mercury (II from liquid solutions using modified activated carbons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo Soé Silva

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Mercury is one of the most toxic metals present in the environment. Adsorption has been proposed among the technologies for mercury abatement. Activated carbons are universal adsorbents which have been found to be a very effective alternative for mercury removal from water. The effectiveness with which a contaminant is adsorbed by the solid surface depends, among other factors, on the charge of the chemical species in which the contaminant is in solution and on the net charge of the adsorbent surface which depend on the pH of the adsorption system. In this work, activated carbon from carbonized eucalyptus wood was used as adsorbent. Two sulphurization treatments by impregnation with sulphuric acid and with carbon disulphide, have been carried out to improve the adsorption capacity for mercury entrapment. Batch adsorption tests at different temperatures and pH of the solution were carried out. The influence of the textural properties, surface chemistry and operation conditions on the adsorption capacity, is discussed.

  12. Uptake of elemental mercury and activity of catalase in rat, hamster, guinea-pig, normal and acatalasemic mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eide, I.; Syversen, T.L.M.

    1982-01-01

    Uptake of elemental mercury after inhalation (3.5 mg/m 3 ) and the activity of catalase in brain, liver, kidney and blood were investigated in rat, hamster, guinea-pig, and normal and acatalasemic mice. The uptake of mercury in the species investigated varied considerably, being highest in the two strains of mice, followed by rat and hamster, and lowest in the guinea-pig. The uptake seemed to be more dependent on pulmonary ventilation than on the activity of catalase. The two strains of mice were exposed to a wide range of mercury concentrations in air (0.002-3.5 mg/m 3 ). The content of mercury in brain, liver and kidney was linearly dependent on the mercury concentration in the air, whereas in blood this relationship was exponential. At the lower concentraions of mercury in the inhaled air, the mercury level in blood was significantly lower, and in kidney higher in the acatalasemic mice compared to the normal ones. In acatalasemic mice the mercury content in the liver has higher at all concentrations investigated, whereas in brain no difference between the two strains was found. (author)

  13. Study of the environmental cycling of mercury

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia Frades, J P; Hildebrand, S G; Huckabee, J W; Murias, B; Diaz, F S; Wilson, R H

    1977-01-01

    A study of mercury in the environment is under way near the mercury mine at Almaden, Spain. The main aspects of the project are: ecology; atmospheric monitoring; and human studies. The mercury deposit at Almaden is described. The liquid effluent from the mine and smelter contains high concentrations of mercury that pollute nearby rivers. Sample collection and analytical methods used in the ecological survey are reviewed. Ecological experiments are considered. Air monitoring studies and human studies currently being performed are assessed. (1 map)

  14. Mercury Concentrations in Fish and Sediment within Streams are Influenced by Watershed and Landscape Variables including Historical Gold Mining in the Sierra Nevada, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alpers, C. N.; Yee, J. L.; Ackerman, J. T.; Orlando, J. L.; Slotton, D. G.; Marvin-DiPasquale, M. C.

    2015-12-01

    We compiled available data on total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations in fish tissue and streambed sediment from stream sites in the Sierra Nevada, California, to assess whether spatial data, including information on historical mining, can be used to make robust predictions of fish fillet tissue THg concentrations. A total of 1,271 fish from five species collected at 103 sites during 1980-2012 were used for the modeling effort: 210 brown trout, 710 rainbow trout, 79 Sacramento pikeminnow, 93 Sacramento sucker, and 179 smallmouth bass. Sediment data were used from 73 sites, including 106 analyses of THg and 77 analyses of MeHg. The dataset included 391 fish (mostly rainbow trout) and 28 sediment samples collected explicitly for this study during 2011-12. Spatial data on historical mining included the USGS Mineral Resources Data System and publicly available maps and satellite photos showing the areas of hydraulic mine pits and other placer mines. Modeling was done using multivariate linear regression and multi-model inference using Akaike Information Criteria. Results indicate that fish THg, accounting for species and length, can be predicted using geospatial data on mining history together with other landscape characteristics including land use/land cover. A model requiring only geospatial data, with an R2 value of 0.61, predicted fish THg correctly with respect to over-or-under 0.2 μg/g wet weight (a California regulatory threshold) for 108 of 121 (89 %) size-species combinations tested. Data for THg in streambed sediment did not improve the geospatial-only model. However, data for sediment MeHg, loss on ignition (organic content), and percent of sediment less than 0.063 mm resulted in a slightly improved model, with an R2 value of 0.63. It is anticipated that these models will be useful to the State of California and others to predict areas where mercury concentrations in fish are likely to exceed regulatory criteria.

  15. Basic Information about Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... or metallic mercury is a shiny, silver-white metal and is liquid at room temperature. It is ... releases can happen naturally. Both volcanoes and forest fires send mercury into the atmosphere. Human activities, however, ...

  16. Minamata Convention on Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    On November 6, 2013 the United States signed the Minamata Convention on Mercury, a new multilateral environmental agreement that addresses specific human activities which are contributing to widespread mercury pollution

  17. Responsible Development of Areva's Mining Activities - 2010 Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2011-07-01

    Areva's mining activities place it among the world leaders in uranium production. The main objective of Areva's mining activities is ensuring uranium supply over the long term to produce nuclear power while emitting less CO 2 , reducing risks to people and the environment and contributing to the development of areas where mining activities take place. Areva's mining activities span five continents. This diversified portfolio allows the group to carry out exploration, project development and production activities in various geopolitical and technological contexts with the support of its staff's multi-cultural backgrounds. This document is the first Responsible Development report of Areva's Mining Activities. Content: 1 - All about Areva's Mining Activities (Interview with Sebastien de Montessus, General Director of Areva's Mining Activities, Ongoing Progress, The Core of Areva's Mining Activities Work); 2 - The Foundation of Areva's Mining Activities Approach (Values and Principles, Governance, Commitments); 3 - Reporting on Areva's Mining Activities (Scope, Relevance of Indicators, Outlook); 4 - Being a Responsible Mining Stakeholder (Actions, Reducing Industrial Risks, Ensuring the Protection of Workers and Populations, Consuming Water and Energy Resources in a Rational Way, Preserving Biodiversity, Managing Waste Rock and Mine Tailings over Time, Sustainable Presence, Contribution to Social Development); 5 - Glossary

  18. Mining

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khairullah Khan

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Opinion mining is an interesting area of research because of its applications in various fields. Collecting opinions of people about products and about social and political events and problems through the Web is becoming increasingly popular every day. The opinions of users are helpful for the public and for stakeholders when making certain decisions. Opinion mining is a way to retrieve information through search engines, Web blogs and social networks. Because of the huge number of reviews in the form of unstructured text, it is impossible to summarize the information manually. Accordingly, efficient computational methods are needed for mining and summarizing the reviews from corpuses and Web documents. This study presents a systematic literature survey regarding the computational techniques, models and algorithms for mining opinion components from unstructured reviews.

  19. The activation of aluminium by mercury ions in non-aggressive media

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bessone, J.B. [INIEC-Dto de Ingenieria Quimica, Universidad Nacional del Sur, Av. Alem 1253, 8000 Bahia Blanca (Argentina)]. E-mail: jbessone@criba.edu.ar

    2006-12-15

    The presence of Hg at concentration less than 300 ppm in Al base alloys causes their passivation breakdown. On alloys used as sacrificial anodes, it causes a major lowering (>0.3 V) in their operational potential in chloride media. Mercury as trace constituent in the natural gas stream causes severe damage to cryogenic heat exchangers. The present paper presents evidences of the mechanism by which mercury produces its pronounced effect in aqueous non-aggressive media. The work was carried out using pure (99.99%) aluminium and mercury (II) acetate solutions of different concentrations and pH. Open circuit potential-time responses were obtained. The surface effects were followed by means of scanning microscopy and EDAX/X-Ray analysis. The results demonstrate that immediately after immersion, the initial air-formed oxide film underwent a dynamic crack-healing process at flaws in the film, possible associated to grain boundaries. The subsequent healing process, if any, depends on the media composition. Thus, in this special case, Hg{sup 2+} ions can be directly reduced on the bare aluminium, reaching a true metallic contact, and initiating surface diffusion. This enables the formation of an amalgam. Aluminium atoms diffuse through the liquid mercury and undergo oxidation at the amalgam/electrolyte interface. This process is responsible for the oxide detachment (by undermining) and the attack morphology (i.e., wide cavities). The presence of aggressive anions is not needed to initiate activation.

  20. Studies on the determination of mercury in human beard shavings by neutron-activation and γ-ray analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pritchard, J.G.; Saied, S.O.

    1986-01-01

    The determination of mercury by instrumental neutron-activation analysis has been studied with particular emphasis on hair as the matrix. The well known analytical standards orchard leaves and Bowen's kale have been compared and the value 0.164 +-0.013 p.p.m. found for the level of mercury in Bowen's kale. Hence, the likely accuracy is +- 8% when matrices similar to Bowen's kale are analysed for mercury by the method described. All factors affecting the precision are discussed. Powdered hair and the standards were shown to be easily homogenisable; however, beard shavings were found to be generally inhomogeneous with respect to mercury distribution, especially when the mercury content was much in excess of ca. 2 p.p.m. owing to exposure of subjects to mercury in the professional working environment. The beard shavings of non-occupationally exposed human beings contained 0.1 to 1.5 p.p.m. of mercury. Difficulties with the establishment of a mercury mass standard for use with the method are discussed. (author)

  1. Water management methodologies from mining and milling activities in Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asenjo, A.

    2006-01-01

    Mining and Milling activities have been developed in Argentina in several provinces, in order to obtain uranium concentrate. As a result of milling process and mining exploitation, contaminated water remain accumulated in several sites. Methodologies to treat the contaminated water from the different places has been evaluated, at laboratory scale. At Los Gigantes Site, effluents from process containing U, Ra, Mn and NH 4 + , are accumulated in a dam. Precipitation using lime and barium chloride was tested to remove impurities in the effluent. From the same place, contaminated liquid from seepage of tailing containing U and Ra was treated using different permeable reactive barriers (PRB). Some materials, such as zeolite, montmorillonite and iron fine grained (Fe 0 ), to be study as a permeable reactive barrier (PRB), were tested to treat seepage. Glass column 100 cc of capacity, were used to performed the tests. At Sierra Pintada Site, water from mine containing U, Ra and As, are accumulated in a open pit. Anionic resin Amberlite IR 400 to remove uranium, and precipitation using barium chloride and iron sulphate to remove radium and arsenic, were tested to treat water from the open pits. Glass column resin 1000 cc of capacity, and a agitated tank 25 liter of capacity for precipitation, were used to performed the test. Cationic resin, Amberlite IR 120, was tested too, in order to remove radium from water from mine. (author)

  2. A rhizosphere-associated symbiont, Photobacterium spp. strain MELD1, and its targeted synergistic activity for phytoprotection against mercury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dony Chacko Mathew

    Full Text Available Though heavy metal such as mercury is toxic to plants and microorganisms, the synergistic activity between them may offer benefit for surviving. In this study, a mercury-reducing bacterium, Photobacterium spp. strain MELD1, with an MIC of 33 mg x kg(-1 mercury was isolated from a severely mercury and dioxin contaminated rhizosphere soil of reed (Phragmites australis. While the whole genome sequencing of MELD1 confirmed the presence of a mer operon, the mercury reductase MerA gene showed 99% sequence identity to Vibrio shilloni AK1 and implicates its route resulted from the event of horizontal gene transfer. The efficiency of MELD1 to vaporize mercury (25 mg x kg(-1, 24 h and its tolerance to toxic metals and xenobiotics such as lead, cadmium, pentachlorophenol, pentachloroethylene, 3-chlorobenzoic acid, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and 1,2,3,7,8,9-hexachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin is promising. Combination of a long yard bean (Vigna unguiculata ssp. Sesquipedalis and strain MELD1 proved beneficial in the phytoprotection of mercury in vivo. The effect of mercury (Hg on growth, distribution and tolerance was examined in root, shoot, leaves and pod of yard long bean with and without the inoculation of strain MELD1. The model plant inoculated with MELD1 had significant increases in biomass, root length, seed number, and increased mercury uptake limited to roots. Biolog plate assay were used to assess the sole-carbon source utilization pattern of the isolate and Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA productivity was analyzed to examine if the strain could contribute to plant growth. The results of this study suggest that, as a rhizosphere-associated symbiont, the synergistic activity between the plant and MELD1 can improve the efficiency for phytoprotection, phytostabilization and phytoremediation of mercury.

  3. A rhizosphere-associated symbiont, Photobacterium spp. strain MELD1, and its targeted synergistic activity for phytoprotection against mercury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathew, Dony Chacko; Ho, Ying-Ning; Gicana, Ronnie Gicaraya; Mathew, Gincy Marina; Chien, Mei-Chieh; Huang, Chieh-Chen

    2015-01-01

    Though heavy metal such as mercury is toxic to plants and microorganisms, the synergistic activity between them may offer benefit for surviving. In this study, a mercury-reducing bacterium, Photobacterium spp. strain MELD1, with an MIC of 33 mg x kg(-1) mercury was isolated from a severely mercury and dioxin contaminated rhizosphere soil of reed (Phragmites australis). While the whole genome sequencing of MELD1 confirmed the presence of a mer operon, the mercury reductase MerA gene showed 99% sequence identity to Vibrio shilloni AK1 and implicates its route resulted from the event of horizontal gene transfer. The efficiency of MELD1 to vaporize mercury (25 mg x kg(-1), 24 h) and its tolerance to toxic metals and xenobiotics such as lead, cadmium, pentachlorophenol, pentachloroethylene, 3-chlorobenzoic acid, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and 1,2,3,7,8,9-hexachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin is promising. Combination of a long yard bean (Vigna unguiculata ssp. Sesquipedalis) and strain MELD1 proved beneficial in the phytoprotection of mercury in vivo. The effect of mercury (Hg) on growth, distribution and tolerance was examined in root, shoot, leaves and pod of yard long bean with and without the inoculation of strain MELD1. The model plant inoculated with MELD1 had significant increases in biomass, root length, seed number, and increased mercury uptake limited to roots. Biolog plate assay were used to assess the sole-carbon source utilization pattern of the isolate and Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) productivity was analyzed to examine if the strain could contribute to plant growth. The results of this study suggest that, as a rhizosphere-associated symbiont, the synergistic activity between the plant and MELD1 can improve the efficiency for phytoprotection, phytostabilization and phytoremediation of mercury.

  4. A Rhizosphere-Associated Symbiont, Photobacterium spp. Strain MELD1, and Its Targeted Synergistic Activity for Phytoprotection against Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathew, Dony Chacko; Ho, Ying-Ning; Gicana, Ronnie Gicaraya; Mathew, Gincy Marina; Chien, Mei-Chieh; Huang, Chieh-Chen

    2015-01-01

    Though heavy metal such as mercury is toxic to plants and microorganisms, the synergistic activity between them may offer benefit for surviving. In this study, a mercury-reducing bacterium, Photobacterium spp. strain MELD1, with an MIC of 33 mg . kg-1 mercury was isolated from a severely mercury and dioxin contaminated rhizosphere soil of reed (Phragmites australis). While the whole genome sequencing of MELD1 confirmed the presence of a mer operon, the mercury reductase MerA gene showed 99% sequence identity to Vibrio shilloni AK1 and implicates its route resulted from the event of horizontal gene transfer. The efficiency of MELD1 to vaporize mercury (25 mg . kg-1, 24 h) and its tolerance to toxic metals and xenobiotics such as lead, cadmium, pentachlorophenol, pentachloroethylene, 3-chlorobenzoic acid, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and 1,2,3,7,8,9-hexachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin is promising. Combination of a long yard bean (Vigna unguiculata ssp. Sesquipedalis) and strain MELD1 proved beneficial in the phytoprotection of mercury in vivo. The effect of mercury (Hg) on growth, distribution and tolerance was examined in root, shoot, leaves and pod of yard long bean with and without the inoculation of strain MELD1. The model plant inoculated with MELD1 had significant increases in biomass, root length, seed number, and increased mercury uptake limited to roots. Biolog plate assay were used to assess the sole-carbon source utilization pattern of the isolate and Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) productivity was analyzed to examine if the strain could contribute to plant growth. The results of this study suggest that, as a rhizosphere-associated symbiont, the synergistic activity between the plant and MELD1 can improve the efficiency for phytoprotection, phytostabilization and phytoremediation of mercury. PMID:25816328

  5. Vapor mercury uptake with sulphur impregnated active carbons derived using sulphur dioxide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tong, S.; Methta, H.; Ahmed, I.; Morris, E.; Fuentes de Maria, L.; Jia, C.Q.

    2008-01-01

    Active carbon adsorption is the primary technology used for removal of vapour mercury from flue gases in coal-fired power plants, municipal solid waste combustors, and other sources. It can be carried out using two different processes, notably injection of powder active carbon into flue gas streams upstream of the particulate collection devices, and filtration with a granular active carbon fixed bed downstream of the flue gas desulphurization units and/or particulate collectors. This paper presented an investigation of vapour mercury uptake performance of laboratory-made sulphur impregnated active carbons (SIACs) using a fixed bed reactor in a temperature range of 25 to 200 degrees Celsius. The materials and methods as well as the properties of activated carbons studied were presented. The experimental set-up was also described. The paper discussed the effects of initial concentration, the flow rate, the loading amount of SIACs, temperature, and the sulphur impregnation on the mercury uptake performance. The study showed that SIACs produced with sulphur dioxide exhibited a more complicated behaviour when temperature was varied, implying a mixed adsorption mechanism. 10 refs., 3 tabs., 8 figs

  6. Development of the neutron activation technique for mercury determination and its application for search of new fields of hydrocarbon raw materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bakiev, S-n.A.; Kuldjanov, B.K.; Rakhmanov, J.; Salimova, G.; Tashimova, F.; Bakiev, S-m.A.

    2010-01-01

    The increased contents of mercury were observed around of hydrocarbonic raw material fields in the last years. But an inverse question is open - whether these contents can serve as an evidence for presence of such fields. To give an answer, a method of neutron-activation analysis for mercury determination in water and soil samples has been developed. A way of chemical mercury fixation in samples has been developed to avoid mercury volatilization during sampling and neutron irradiation. (authors)

  7. Mercury Emissions Capture Efficiency with Activated Carbon Injection at a Russian Coal-Fired Thermal Power Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    This EPA-led project, conducted in collaboration with UNEP, the Swedish Environmental Institute and various Russian Institutes, that demonstrates that the mercury emission control efficiencies of activated carbon injection technologies applied at a Russian power plant burning Rus...

  8. Hair Mercury Level is Associated with Anemia and Micronutrient Status in Children Living Near Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining in the Peruvian Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinhouse, Caren; Ortiz, Ernesto J; Berky, Axel J; Bullins, Paige; Hare-Grogg, John; Rogers, Laura; Morales, Ana-Maria; Hsu-Kim, Heileen; Pan, William K

    2017-12-01

    Anemia has been widely studied in global health contexts because of severe nutritional deficiency, and more recently, inflammatory status, but chemical exposures are rarely considered. Until recently, "anemia" was used synonymously with "iron deficiency anemia (IDA)" in global health settings. However, only 50% of anemia cases worldwide are IDA. Environmental toxicology studies of anemia risk have generally focused on populations in developed countries, albeit with high exposure to environmental toxicants, such as lead or cadmium. In the developing world, toxicant exposures commonly coexist with other risk factors for anemia. In particular, artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) communities are at risk for dietary methylmercury exposure through contaminated fish consumption, and for anemia due to food insecurity and infectious and chronic diseases. Here, we report analysis of total hair mercury content, hemoglobin, and serum micronutrient levels in children association between total mercury and hemoglobin (β = -0.12 g/dL, P = 0.06) that persisted (β = -0.14 g/dL, P = 0.04) after adjusting for age, sex, anthropometrics, and vitamin B 12 in multivariate regression. This study provides preliminary evidence that methylmercury exposure is associated with anemia, which is especially relevant to children living near ASGM.

  9. Mining and representing recommendations in actively evolving recommender systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Assent, Ira

    2010-01-01

    Recommender systems provide an automatic means of filtering out interesting items, usually based on past similarity of user ratings. In previous work, we have suggested a model that allows users to actively build a recommender network. Users express trust, obtain transparency, and grow (anonymous......) recommender connections. In this work, we propose mining such active systems to generate easily understandable representations of the recommender network. Users may review these representations to provide active feedback. This approach further enhances the quality of recommendations, especially as topics...... of interest change over time. Most notably, it extends the amount of control users have over the model that the recommender network builds of their interests....

  10. SELENIUM TREATMENT/REMOVAL ALTERNATIVES DEMONSTRATION PROJECT - MINE WASTE TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM ACTIVITY III, PROJECT 20

    Science.gov (United States)

    This document is the final report for EPA's Mine WAste Technology Program (MWTP) Activity III, Project 20--Selenium Treatment/Removal Alternatives Demonstration project. Selenium contamination originates from many sources including mining operations, mineral processing, abandoned...

  11. TSCA Chemical Data Reporting Fact Sheet: Reporting Manufactured Chemical Substances from Metal Mining and Related Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    This fact sheet provides guidance on the Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule requirements related to the reporting of mined metals, intermediates, and byproducts manufactured during metal mining and related activities.

  12. Health and environmental impact of mercury in the Philippines using nuclear techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cortes-Maramba, Nelia; Reyes, J.P.; Panganiban, L.C.P.; Francisco-Rivera, Ana Trinidad; Suplido, M.L.; Akagi, Hirokatsu

    2002-01-01

    Mercury pollution in most parts of the regions in the world are caused by release into the environment of metallic mercury used in the recovery of gold by an amalgamation technique with subsequent mercury emission into the atmosphere by blowtorching operations. Significant small-scale gold mining operations in other countries such as Tanzania, Philippines, Indonesia, China and Vietnam have been reported with roughly 10 million people estimated to be involved in these activities Artisanal gold mining activities using mercury has proliferated in various parts of the country since the early 1980's. In Southern Philippines, it is estimated that a small-scale gold processor utilizes one kilogram of mercury every week or an average of fifty-two kgs/1yr. Production is estimated at 30 kilograms of gold per day. It has been estimated that 140 tons of mercury flux has been dumped directly into the river systems from small-scale gold mining operations in one of the gold rush areas in the country. In the 1980's, gold rush activities intensified in Northeastern Mindanao providing livelihood opportunities to about 80,000-120,000 people at the height of mining activities in the area. In gold mining areas it should be noted that transformation in the natural environment of inorganic mercury to methylmercury occurs which can easily bio-accumulate in fish and other organisms through the aquatic food chains. Therefore, there are two main exposure pathways of mercury contamination that can affect the human population in gold mining areas. First, gold miners and workers are exposed to inorganic mercury due to direct inhalation of mercury during gold recovery processes and second, people living along the river systems and depending on riverine products for food sources can be exposed to methylmercury mainly through fish consumption. Presently, environmental and health monitoring conducted by several government agencies in the recent past were limited to the determination of total

  13. Sorption of inorganic mercury on soils from Ankobra basin...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    dmosman.admin

    cury emitted from artisanal gold mining activities within the Ankobra basin. Total mercury ... in the south-western part of Ghana by Cold Vapour Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry. THg content of the .... was determined using hydrometer method (Gee and Bauder ...... vian iron – humus podzol – validation and long – term ...

  14. [Evaluation of environmental conditions: air, water and soil in areas of mining activity in Boyacá, Colombia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agudelo-Calderón, Carlos A; Quiroz-Arcentales, Leonardo; García-Ubaque, Juan C; Robledo-Martínez, Rocío; García-Ubaque, Cesar A

    2016-02-01

    Objectives To determine concentrations of PM10, mercury and lead in indoor air of homes, water sources and soil in municipalities near mining operations. Method 6 points were evaluated in areas of influence and 2 in control areas. For measurements of indoor air, we used the NIOSH 600 method (PM10), NIOSH 6009 (mercury) and NIOSH 7300 (lead). For water analysis we used the IDEAM Guide for monitoring discharges. For soil analysis, we used the cold vapor technique (mercury) and atomic absorption (lead). Results In almost all selected households, the average PM10 and mercury concentrations in indoor air exceeded applicable air quality standards. Concentrations of lead were below standard levels. In all water sources, high concentrations of lead were found and in some places within the mining areas, high levels of iron, aluminum and mercury were also found. In soil, mercury concentrations were below the detection level and for lead, differences between the monitored points were observed. Conclusions The results do not establish causal relationships between mining and concentration of these pollutants in the evaluated areas because of the multiplicity of sources in the area. However, such studies provide important information, useful to agents of the environmental health system and researchers. Installation of networks for environmental monitoring to obtain continuous reports is suggested.

  15. Ecotoxicological evaluation of areas polluted by mining activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Lorenzo, M. L.; Martínez-Sánchez, M. J.; Pérez-Sirvent, C.; Molina, J.

    2009-04-01

    Determination of the contaminant content is not enough to evaluate the toxic effects or to characterise contaminated sites, because such a measure does not reflect the ecotoxicological danger in the environment and does not provide information on the effects of the chemical compounds. To estimate the risk of contaminants, chemical methods need to be complemented with biological methods. Therefore, ecotoxicological testing may be a useful approach for assessing the toxicity as a complement to chemical analysis. The aim of this study was to develop a battery of bioassays for the ecotoxicological screening of areas polluted by mining activities. Particularly, the toxicity of water samples, sediments and their pore-water extracts was evaluated by using three assays: bacteria, plants and ostracods. Moreover, the possible relationship between observed toxicity and results of chemical analysis was studied. The studied area, Sierra Minera, is close to the mining region of La Uni

  16. Mine-hoist active fault tolerant control system and strategy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Z.; Wang, Y.; Meng, J.; Zhao, P.; Chang, Y. [China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou (China)] wzjsdstu@163.com

    2005-06-01

    Based on fault diagnosis and fault tolerant technologies, the mine-hoist active fault-tolerant control system (MAFCS) is presented with corresponding strategies, which includes the fault diagnosis module (FDM), the dynamic library (DL) and the fault-tolerant control model (FCM). When a fault is judged from some sensor by the FDM, FCM reconfigures the state of the MAFCS by calling the parameters from all sub libraries in DL, in order to ensure the reliability and safety of the mine hoist. The simulating result shows that MAFCS is of certain intelligence, which can adopt the corresponding control strategies according to different fault modes, even when there is quite a difference between the real data and the prior fault modes. 7 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  17. Validation of mercury tip-switch and accelerometer activity sensors for identifying resting and active behavior in bears

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jasmine Ware,; Rode, Karyn D.; Pagano, Anthony M.; Bromaghin, Jeffrey F.; Robbins, Charles T.; Joy Erlenbach,; Shannon Jensen,; Amy Cutting,; Nicole Nicassio-Hiskey,; Amy Hash,; Owen, Megan A.; Heiko Jansen,

    2015-01-01

    Activity sensors are often included in wildlife transmitters and can provide information on the behavior and activity patterns of animals remotely. However, interpreting activity-sensor data relative to animal behavior can be difficult if animals cannot be continuously observed. In this study, we examined the performance of a mercury tip-switch and a tri-axial accelerometer housed in collars to determine whether sensor data can be accurately classified as resting and active behaviors and whether data are comparable for the 2 sensor types. Five captive bears (3 polar [Ursus maritimus] and 2 brown [U. arctos horribilis]) were fitted with a collar specially designed to internally house the sensors. The bears’ behaviors were recorded, classified, and then compared with sensor readings. A separate tri-axial accelerometer that sampled continuously at a higher frequency and provided raw acceleration values from 3 axes was also mounted on the collar to compare with the lower resolution sensors. Both accelerometers more accurately identified resting and active behaviors at time intervals ranging from 1 minute to 1 hour (≥91.1% accuracy) compared with the mercury tip-switch (range = 75.5–86.3%). However, mercury tip-switch accuracy improved when sampled at longer intervals (e.g., 30–60 min). Data from the lower resolution accelerometer, but not the mercury tip-switch, accurately predicted the percentage of time spent resting during an hour. Although the number of bears available for this study was small, our results suggest that these activity sensors can remotely identify resting versus active behaviors across most time intervals. We recommend that investigators consider both study objectives and the variation in accuracy of classifying resting and active behaviors reported here when determining sampling interval.

  18. Arsenic, gold and mercury concentration levels in freshwater fish by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ndiokwere, C.L.

    1983-01-01

    Elemental concentrations of arsenic, gold and mercury have been determined in flesh tissues of freshwater fish species from some Nigerian rivers. The technique of neutron activation followed by radiochemical separation of the isotopes of interest has been applied. The concentrations of 0.04 to 0.87 μg g -1 and 0.4 to 1.33 μg g -1 obtained for gold and mercury, respectively, in the samples are much higher than the values reported in the literature for freshwater fish. The arsenic concentration range of 0.07 to 0.42 μg g -1 is within the reported range. The high concentration levels of these heavy metals can be attributed to local contamination of the rivers. (author)

  19. Determination of arsenic and mercury in facial cosmetics by instrumental neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bravo Martinez, J.

    1979-01-01

    The presence of arsenic and mercury in some chilean facial cosmetics was investiged. Since in Chile there is no regulations dealing with the maximum permisible concentration of some chemical elements in cosmetics products, the national industry control neither the presence nor the quantity, if any, of those elements. The study was performed on compact or powder eye shadows by means of instrumental neutron activation analysis. The samples were analized without any chemical treatment and with minimum manipulation to avoid any possible contamination. A total of 67 samples from 9 different cosmetic industries were analysed. Arsenic was detected and determined quantitatively in 46 samples, ranging from 0.32 to 136 ppm. Mercury was not detected in any sample. The contamination of arsenic is due to the high concentration of this element in some of the raw material used in the manufacturing of the cosmetics, as was demonstrated by the analysis of these materials. (EC)

  20. Potential for Increased Mercury Accumulation in the Estuary Food Web

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jay A Davis

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Present concentrations of mercury in large portions of San Francisco Bay (Bay, the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Delta, and the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers are high enough to warrant concern for the health of humans and wildlife. Large scale tidal wetland restoration is currently under consideration as a means of increasing populations of fish species of concern. Tidal wetland restoration activities may lead to increased concentrations of mercury in the estuarine food web and exacerbate the existing mercury problem. This paper evaluates our present ability to predict the local and regional effects of restoration actions on mercury accumulation in aquatic food webs. A sport fish consumption advisory is in place for the Bay, and an advisory is under consideration for the Delta and lower Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers. Mercury concentrations in eggs of several water bird species from the Bay have exceeded the lowest observed effect level. A variety of mercury sources, largely related to historic mercury and gold mining, is present in the watershed and has created a spatially heterogeneous distribution of mercury in the Bay-Delta Estuary. Mercury exists in the environment in a variety of forms and has a complex biogeochemical cycle. The most hazardous form, methylmercury, is produced at a relatively high rate in wetlands and newly flooded aquatic habitats. It is likely that distinct spatial variation on multiple spatial scales exists in net methylmercury production in Bay-Delta tidal wetlands, including variation within each tidal wetland, among tidal wetlands in the same region, and among tidal wetlands in different regions. Understanding this spatial variation and its underlying causes will allow environmental managers to minimize the negative effects of mercury bioaccumulation as a result of restoration activities. Actions needed to reduce the uncertainty associated with this issue include a long term, multifaceted research effort, long

  1. Neutron activation analysis of biological materials for sub PPM amount of mercury without determining the chemical yield

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Foldzinska, A.; Dybczynski, R.

    1976-01-01

    A simple method for the determination of sub ppm amounts of mercury in various biological materials by neutron activation analysis is described. Irradiated samples were decomposed with H 2 SO 4 - fuming HNO 3 mixture and mercury selectively isolated by ion exchange chromatography using Dowex 50X2(H + ) and Dowex 1X4(Br - ) columns in HBr medium. Finally the activity of 197 Hg fixed on an anion exchange resin was measured either with a Ge(Li) or a NaI (Tl) detector. Both the high radiochemical purity of mercury and the practically quantitative recovery were achieved thus eliminating the necessity of determining the chemical yield. The method was used for the determination of mercury in flour, milk, butter, margarine, fish, etc. Total time of analysis (including counting) amounted to 6-7 hrs and several samples could be simultaneously analysed by one technician. (T.G.)

  2. Methane activation on palladium and mercury loaded solid supports

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kataja, K; Huuska, M; Karinto, K; Maijanen, A; Reinikainen, M; Kiviaho, J; Hase, A [VTT Chemical Technology, Espoo (Finland)

    1997-12-31

    Methane activation by non-radical method and especially possibilities to heterogenize the homogeneous non-radical system of Periana et al. was studied. Varied loadings of Pd and Hg were ion exchanged to acidic ZSM-5 zeolites with two different Si/A1 ratios. Activation was tested in tubular flow reactor and the outcoming gas was analyzed with quadrupole mass spectrometer. Catalysts, fresh and used, were characterized by XRF and XRD spectroscopies. The methane activation was observed on tested catalysts. However, the activation was concluded to occur mainly through radical reaction and only to some extent by the expected non-radical mechanism. (author) (9 refs.)

  3. Methane activation on palladium and mercury loaded solid supports

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kataja, K.; Huuska, M.; Karinto, K.; Maijanen, A.; Reinikainen, M.; Kiviaho, J.; Hase, A. [VTT Chemical Technology, Espoo (Finland)

    1996-12-31

    Methane activation by non-radical method and especially possibilities to heterogenize the homogeneous non-radical system of Periana et al. was studied. Varied loadings of Pd and Hg were ion exchanged to acidic ZSM-5 zeolites with two different Si/A1 ratios. Activation was tested in tubular flow reactor and the outcoming gas was analyzed with quadrupole mass spectrometer. Catalysts, fresh and used, were characterized by XRF and XRD spectroscopies. The methane activation was observed on tested catalysts. However, the activation was concluded to occur mainly through radical reaction and only to some extent by the expected non-radical mechanism. (author) (9 refs.)

  4. Analysis for trace mercury concentration. I. Critical evaluation of current procedures. II. A proposed method for determination by instrumental neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Litman, R.

    1975-01-01

    Current methods of sample pretreatments, digestion, lyophilization and extraction, have been found to lead to considerable loss of mercury, at an initial mercury concentration of 1 μg/g, and less. Storage of solutions of mercury at concentrations of less than 1 μg/ml, in glass, Teflon and polyethylene containers, leads to losses by adsorption. Electrochemical reduction of mercury to the metal, and subsequent volatilization, is postulated as the mechanism of loss from the samples studied during lyophilization. A method of instrumental neutron activation analysis, which obviates the above pretreatments, has been developed for mercury concentrations as low as 1 ng/ml

  5. Bryophyte Communities from Abandoned Mercury Mine in Eastern Guizhou Province%废弃汞矿山苔藓植物群落生态研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    潘莎; 张朝晖

    2011-01-01

    对贵州省铜仁市云场坪镇废弃汞矿山的苔藓植物群落进行了研究,通过野外全面调查和实验室仔细鉴定,发现废弃汞矿山苔藓植物群落的种类组成有13科52属62种(苔类植物2科2属2种,藓类植物11科50属60种).应用双向指示种分析法(TWINSPAN)和除趋势对应分析(DCA)分析其分布格局表明,该区12个样点分为2个类型组,组1为废石、废渣样地,组2为废洞样地,说明废洞与废石、废渣生境差异性较大,忿函、废渣生境较相似;北地扭口藓群落(Barbula fallax Com.)、阔叶小石藓群落(Weisia planifolia Corn.)、尖叶扭口藓群落(Barbula conystricta Com.)、拟丛净口藓群落(Gymnostomum anoectangioides Com.)、硬叶净口藓群落(Gymnostomum subrigidulumCom.)为该矿区废石、废渣上的优势群落,其生物量为55.20 -448.20 g·m-,,饱和吸水量为260.80-3 599.40 g-m-2,说明在矿区这种干旱且保水能力弱的环境区域,苔藓植物群落以其特有的生态功能在矿区生态环境治理中具有十分重要的作用.%The bryophyte communities were investigated in abandoned mercury mine of Yunchangping town,Guizhou province. Based on the extensive investigation and identification of the bryophyte specimens, 62 taxa in 52 genera of 13 families were found (2 species in 2 genera of 2 families are Hepaticae, 60 taxa in 50 genera of 11 families are Musci). Two-way Indicator Species Analysis (TWINSPAN) and Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA) were used to analyze their distribution patterns. The results showed that 12 sampling plots could be classified into two groups. Group 1 contained waste rock sampling plots and waste solid sampling plots, group 2 contained abandoned mercury mine caves, which indicated the habitats of abandoned mercury mine caves are different from waste rock and waste solid, the habitats of waste rock and waste solid are similar. The dominant communities are Barbula fallax Com. , Weisia planifolia Com. , Barbula

  6. Total mercury and methylmercury accumulation in wild plants grown at wastelands composed of mine tailings: Insights into potential candidates for phytoremediation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Xiaoli; Wu, Yonggui; Zhou, Hongyun; Xu, Xiaohang; Xu, Zhidong; Shang, Lihai; Qiu, Guangle

    2018-08-01

    Total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MMHg) were investigated in 259 wild plants belonging to 49 species in 29 families that grew in heavily Hg-contaminated wastelands composed of cinnabar ore mine tailings (calcines) in the Wanshan region, southwestern China, the world's third largest Hg mining district. The bioconcentration factors (BCFs) of THg and MMHg from soil to roots ([THg] root /[THg] soil , [MMHg] root /[MMHg] soil ) were evaluated. The results showed that THg and MMHg in both plants and soils varied widely, with ranges of 0.076-140 μg/g THg and 0.19-87 ng/g MMHg in roots, 0.19-106 μg/g THg and 0.06-31 ng/g MMHg in shoots, and 0.74-1440 μg/g THg and 0.41-820 ng/g MMHg in soil. Among all investigated species, Arthraxon hispidus, Eremochloa ciliaris, Clerodendrum bunge, and Ixeris sonchifolia had significantly elevated concentrations of THg in shoots and/or roots that reached 100 μg/g, whereas Chenopodium glaucum, Corydalisedulis maxim, and Rumex acetosa contained low values below 0.5 μg/g. In addition to the high THg concentrations, the fern E. ciliaris also showed high BCF values for both THg and MMHg exceeding 1.0, suggesting its capability to extract Hg from soils. Considering its dominance and the tolerance identified in the present study, E. ciliaris is suggested to be a practical candidate for phytoextraction, whereas A. hispidus is identified as a potential candidate for phytostabilization of Hg mining-contaminated soils. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Immobilization of mercury and zinc in an alkali-activated slag matrix.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Guangren; Sun, Darren Delai; Tay, Joo Hwa

    2003-07-04

    The behavior of heavy metals mercury and zinc immobilized in an alkali-activated slag (AAS) matrix has been evaluated using physical property tests, pore structure analysis and XRD, TG-DTG, FTIR and TCLP analysis. Low concentrations (0.5%) of mercury and zinc ions had only a slight affect on compressive strength, pore structure and hydration of AAS matrixes. The addition of 2% Hg ions to the AAS matrix resulted in a reduction in early compressive strength but no negative effects were noticed after 28 days of hydration. Meanwhile, 2% Hg ions can be effectively immobilized in the AAS matrix with the leachate meeting the USEPA TCLP mercury limit. For a 2% Zn-doped AAS matrix, the hydration of the AAS paste was greatly retarded and the zinc concentration in the leachate from this matrix was higher than 5mg/l even at 28 days. Based on these results, we conclude that the physical encapsulation and chemical fixation mechanisms were likely to be responsible for the immobilization of Hg ions in the AAS matrix while only chemical fixation mechanisms were responsible for the immobilization of Zn ions in the AAS matrix.

  8. Mercury Levels in Women and Children from Interior Villages in Suriname, South America

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul E. Ouboter

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Natural sources of mercury, historical gold mining, and contemporary artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM activities have led to mercury contamination in Suriname. Our primary objective was to evaluate mercury levels in hair of women and children from interior villages in Suriname where mercury levels in fish are elevated. We also estimated blood levels of mercury using an established mathematical conversion to facilitate comparison with other biomonitoring programs in the United States. Estimated levels of mercury in the blood of participants from Suriname were significantly higher than those in women from a heavy marine fish-consuming population in southeast Louisiana and estimates of the US national average. This includes women from Surinamese villages well upstream of ASGM activities. Since residents in these areas rely heavily on local fish, this is likely the source of their exposure to mercury. The levels in hair are similar to those seen in women from longitudinal studies finding neurological impairments in children exposed pre- and postnatally. Additional biomonitoring and neurodevelopmental assessments are warranted in these areas, as well as other areas of the Suriname. Mercury levels in hair (Suriname and blood (southeast LA USA were determined using cold vapor atomic absorption spectroscopy (CVAAS.

  9. Mercury Levels in Women and Children from Interior Villages in Suriname, South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouboter, Paul E; Landburg, Gwendolyn; Satnarain, Gaitrie U; Starke, Sheryl Y; Nanden, Indra; Simon-Friedt, Bridget; Hawkins, William B; Taylor, Robert; Lichtveld, Maureen Y; Harville, Emily; Wickliffe, Jeffrey K

    2018-05-17

    Natural sources of mercury, historical gold mining, and contemporary artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) activities have led to mercury contamination in Suriname. Our primary objective was to evaluate mercury levels in hair of women and children from interior villages in Suriname where mercury levels in fish are elevated. We also estimated blood levels of mercury using an established mathematical conversion to facilitate comparison with other biomonitoring programs in the United States. Estimated levels of mercury in the blood of participants from Suriname were significantly higher than those in women from a heavy marine fish-consuming population in southeast Louisiana and estimates of the US national average. This includes women from Surinamese villages well upstream of ASGM activities. Since residents in these areas rely heavily on local fish, this is likely the source of their exposure to mercury. The levels in hair are similar to those seen in women from longitudinal studies finding neurological impairments in children exposed pre- and postnatally. Additional biomonitoring and neurodevelopmental assessments are warranted in these areas, as well as other areas of the Suriname. Mercury levels in hair (Suriname) and blood (southeast LA USA) were determined using cold vapor atomic absorption spectroscopy (CVAAS).

  10. Data Mining Activities for Bone Discipline - Current Status

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sibonga, J. D.; Pietrzyk, R. A.; Johnston, S. L.; Arnaud, S. B.

    2008-01-01

    The disciplinary goals of the Human Research Program are broadly discussed. There is a critical need to identify gaps in the evidence that would substantiate a skeletal health risk during and after spaceflight missions. As a result, data mining activities will be engaged to gather reviews of medical data and flight analog data and to propose additional measures and specific analyses. Several studies are briefly reviewed which have topics that partially address these gaps in knowledge, including bone strength recovery with recovery of bone mass density, current renal stone formation knowledge, herniated discs, and a review of bed rest studies conducted at Ames Human Research Facility.

  11. Determination of arsenic, chromium, mercury, selenium and zinc in tropical marine fish by neutron activation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharif, A.K.M.; Alamgir, M.; Krishnamoorthy, K.R.; Mustafa, A.I.

    1993-01-01

    Determination of arsenic, chromium, mercury, selenium and zinc in several commonly consumed tropical marine fishes have been carried out by neutron activation followed by radiochemical separation to remove the interfering activities of sodium, potassium, bromine, and phosphorus, etc., in order to establish the baseline data and to measure the levels of contamination, if any. The results positively indicate that the marine fishes of Bangladesh have concentrations much below the permissible levels for these toxic elements. A radiochemical scheme for the separation of seven trace elements in biological material is also presented. (author) 47 refs.; 3 tabs

  12. Mercury determination in dentist's hair and nails by instrumental neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mazzilli, B.; Munita, C.S.

    1986-01-01

    The mercury in scalp hair and fingernails of a group of dentists who usually handle with this toxic element in their profession is determined. The results were obtained by instrumental neutron activation analysis. The experimental procedure was based on the evaluation of the 197 Hg photopeak area, whose half life is 65h. After at a neutron fluxo of 5x10 12 n.cm -2 .sec -1 , the activity of the samples were measured by using a solid state Ge (Li) detector coupled to a 4.096 channel pulse height analyser. (M.A.C.) [pt

  13. Legal Policy Of Peoples Rights In Around Mining Corporate Post-Mining Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teng Berlianty

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to gain an understanding of the essence of the rights of communities around post-mining corporate responsibility towards the fulfillment of the rights of communities around post-mining as well as government policies to protect the sustainability of the post-mining communities around the mining business. This type of research is a normative legal research methods using primary legal materials secondary and tertiary. With the approach of sociolegal through down the field in Gebe to get data concrete. Data were analyzed with qualitative analysis. The results showed that the essence of the rights of communities around mining operations after the mine in the form of the right to a decent life welfare the right to social security in the form of employment the guarantee of free education and healthcare for the local population as well as the right to a good environment and healthy as a guarantee of the continuity of human existence and future generations. These rights have not been fully realized post-mining. Corporate responsibility in accordance with Article 74 of Law No. 40 of 2007 on the fulfillment of the rights of communities around mining operations after the mine in the form of welfare responsibilities clothing food and shelter especially electricity and water have not been met then the social responsibility to empower communities around the mine as stakeholders as well as environmental responsibility. Legal policy such as the empowerment of communities around the mine in order to be self-sufficient after the post-mining public service policies in education and health as a form of existence of government using existing programs nationally and subordinate to the PT. Antam. as well as environmental protection policies in the form of post-mining reclamation formulated in the companys liabilities.

  14. Mercury Pollution in Soils from the Yacuambi River (Ecuadorian Amazon) as a Result of Gold Placer Mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Blanco, Charo; Collahuazo, Luis; Torres, Sandra; Chinchay, Luis; Ayala, Diana; Benítez, Paulina

    2015-09-01

    Gold mining is known to generate important economic products but also to produce several types of contamination/pollution. We report here the first data about Hg concentrations in the soils of the Yacuambi River in the Ecuadorian Amazon. We analyzed soil samples to assess the extent of contamination caused by gold placer mining in this area. Hg concentrations in soils exceeded the local background concentrations. High concentrations of Mn, As, Pb, Cr, Cu, Fe and Zn in some soil samples were probably derived from the geology of the site, which is rich in polysulfides and metamorphic rocks. Placer mining may accelerate the natural release of these elements to the environment by the exposure of the bedrock to the atmosphere. Accumulation of Hg in the river soils may be a potential source of toxicity for aquatic life and a risk to human health in the future.

  15. Report to Congress on the Global Supply and Trade of Elemental Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    This report assembles available information on the global supply and trade of mercury, including both primary mercury mining as well as mercury that has been recovered from a wide variety of sources and redistilled to a high level of purity.

  16. Laying Waste to Mercury: Inexpensive Sorbents Made from Sulfur and Recycled Cooking Oils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Worthington, Max J. H.; Kucera, Renata L.; Albuquerque, Inês S.; Gibson, Christopher T.; Sibley, Alexander; Slattery, Ashley D.; Campbell, Jonathan A.; Alboaiji, Salah F. K.; Muller, Katherine A.; Young, Jason; Adamson, Nick; Gascooke, Jason R.; Jampaiah, Deshetti; Sabri, Ylias M.; Bhargava, Suresh K.; Ippolito, Samuel J.; Lewis, David A.; Quinton, Jamie S.; Ellis, Amanda V.; Johs, Alexander; Bernardes, Gonçalo J. L.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Mercury pollution threatens the environment and human health across the globe. This neurotoxic substance is encountered in artisanal gold mining, coal combustion, oil and gas refining, waste incineration, chloralkali plant operation, metallurgy, and areas of agriculture in which mercury‐rich fungicides are used. Thousands of tonnes of mercury are emitted annually through these activities. With the Minamata Convention on Mercury entering force this year, increasing regulation of mercury pollution is imminent. It is therefore critical to provide inexpensive and scalable mercury sorbents. The research herein addresses this need by introducing low‐cost mercury sorbents made solely from sulfur and unsaturated cooking oils. A porous version of the polymer was prepared by simply synthesising the polymer in the presence of a sodium chloride porogen. The resulting material is a rubber that captures liquid mercury metal, mercury vapour, inorganic mercury bound to organic matter, and highly toxic alkylmercury compounds. Mercury removal from air, water and soil was demonstrated. Because sulfur is a by‐product of petroleum refining and spent cooking oils from the food industry are suitable starting materials, these mercury‐capturing polymers can be synthesised entirely from waste and supplied on multi‐kilogram scales. This study is therefore an advance in waste valorisation and environmental chemistry. PMID:28763123

  17. Impact of mine and natural sources of mercury on water, sediment, and biota in Harley Gulch adjacent to the Abbott-Turkey Run mine, Lake County, California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rytuba, James J.; Hothem, Roger L.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Goldstein, Daniel N.

    2011-01-01

    Executive Summary Stable-isotope data indicate that there are three sources of water that effect the composition and Hg concentration of waters in Harley Gulch: (1) meteoric water that dominates water chemistry during the wet season; (2) thermal water effluent from the Turkey Run mine that effects the chemistry at sample site HG1; and (3) cold connate groundwater that dominates water chemistry during the dry season as it upwells and reaches the surface. The results from sampling executed for this study suggest four distinct areas in Harley Gulch: (1) the contaminated West Fork of Harley Gulch, consisting of the stream immediately downstream from the mine area and the wetlands upstream from Harley Gulch canyon (sample sites HG1-HG2, (2) the East Fork of Harley Gulch, where no mining has occurred (sample site HG3), (3) sample sites HG4-HG7, where a seasonal influx of saline groundwater alters stream chemistry, and (4) sample sites HG7-HG10, downstream in Harley Gulch towards the confluence with Cache Creek.

  18. Mercury Retention and Accumulation by Plants at the Abandoned New Idria Mine Site - a Preliminary micro-XRF and micro-XRD Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siebner, H.; Webb, S. M.; Brown, G. E.

    2008-12-01

    Due to its high toxicity and increasing levels in ecosystems, Hg pollution has become a serious global problem. A lot of research has been conducted with regard to Hg biogeochemical cycles in aquatic systems. Much less is known about terrestrial Hg-cycles in general and in plants specifically. Plants play an important role in these cycles; they are known to be an important sink for both atmospheric and soil Hg, the vegetative cover significantly influences soil erosion and migration of contaminants into aquatic systems. However, the processes involved in the interactions of Hg with plants and plants products are poorly studied. Information concerning the interaction of Hg in plants at the molecular level is sparse. The present study is intended to provide new information on Hg retention, translocation, and accumulation in plants associated with mercury mine wastes in central California. We present here preliminary results of Hg distribution in root and leave samples, taken from different plant species, which have adapted to the hostile environment at the New Idria site. Samples were taken at two locations that differ in water acidity and flooding regime. The distribution of Hg appears to be affected by plant species, growing conditions, and development stage. Micro-XRF images of root sections show that Hg is mainly associated with Fe plaque at the outer surfaces and epidermis, but is distributed differently in roots of the two plants. Micro-XRD showed evidence for mineralogical changes in the plaque through the sections. Mercury in leaves was found to be highly diffuse in its distribution, and is not associated with Fe-rich particles attached to the outer surface of the leaf. This finding implies that Hg is assimilated in the leaf tissue. Further examination of Fe plaque characteristics and associated Hg, as well as Hg speciation in the different organs of these plants, is being conducted in our lab.

  19. Assessment of mercury levels in different environmental matrices in communities impacted by artisanal gold mining in the Asutifi District of Ghana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adjei-Kyereme, Y.

    2010-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) used in gold amalgamation is a major source of contamination in Ghana. Water, sediment and tailings samples from artisanal gold mining (AGM) sites in Kenyasi, Wuramumuso and Nkaseim in the Asutifi district were collected during the wet and the dry period of 2009 and 2010 respectively, and analyzed for total-Hg (T-Hg) using Cold Vapour Atomic Absorption spectroscopy. T-Hg concentration in water samples collected in the wet period were all below detection (< 1.00 μg/L) while that of the dry period ranged from below detection to 11.22 μg/L. T -Hg in water in the wet period were all below the WHO permissible limit of 1.0 μg/L whereas about 85 % of the samples collected in the dry period had values above the WHO permissible limit. In the sediment, T-Hg in the dry period was significantly higher (p < 0.05) than that of the wet period. T -Hg concentrations ranged from below detection limit (0.001 mg/kg) to 0.053 mg/kg (wet) and 0.233 to 8.564 mg/kg (dry) respectively. Likewise, in the tailings, T-Hg concentration ranged from 0.339 to 8.466 mg/kg for only dry period. The pollution status of mercury in sediment and tailings were evaluated by the geoaccumulation index and the enrichment factor. The average geoaccumulation index value indicated that sediments were practically uncontaminated (- 4.4) in the wet period but moderately contaminated (0.6) in the dry period while enrichment factor (ef) gave moderate to extremely high enrichment. In the case of tailings, average geoaccumulation index for mercury (0.5) denoted uncontaminated to moderately contaminated, while the EF indicated very high to extremely high enrichment. With regard to other trace metals, AGM seemed to have an impact on the ambient levels of As, Mn, Cu and Al as high levels were observed in sediment and tailings. The Pollution Load indices (< 1) however, suggested that the sites were not polluted. (au)

  20. Written reports on the effects of mining activities on the natural environment in Idrija in the 19th Century

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Car, J.; Dizdarevic, T.

    2004-01-01

    The environmental conditions in the Idrija Mercury Mine and its broader surroundings were strongly affected in the first half of the 19th century by two disastrous pit fires. The fire could only be extinguished by flooding of the pit. The consequences of such flooding was extensive poisoning with

  1. Tailings From Mining Activities, Impact on Groundwater, and Remediation

    OpenAIRE

    Khalid Al-Rawahy

    2001-01-01

    Effluent wastes from mining operations and beneficiation processes are comprized mostly of the following pollutants: total suspended solids (TTS), alkalinity or acidity (pH), settleable solids, iron in ferrous mining, and dissolved metals in nonferrous mining. Suspended solids consist of small particles of solid pollutants that resist separation by conventional means. A number of dissolved metals are considered toxic pollutants. The major metal pollutants present in ore mining and beneficiati...

  2. Effects of mercury and selenite on δ-aminolevulinate dehydratase activity and on selected oxidative stress parameters in rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perottoni, Juliano; Lobato, L.P.; Silveira, Aline; Rocha, J.B.T.; Emanuelli, Tatiana

    2004-01-01

    The present study evaluates the effects of Na 2 SeO 3 and HgCl 2 on kidney and liver of adult rats. In vivo, HgCl 2 (17 μmol/kg, sc) reduced ascorbic acid levels in liver (∼15%), whereas in kidney it reduced ALA-D activity (∼60%) and ascorbic acid levels (∼35%) and increased TBARS content (∼50%). Na 2 SeO 3 (17 μmol/kg, sc) exposure increased the content of nonprotein thiol groups in liver (35-60%) and kidney (∼50-160%), partially prevented mercury-induced ALA-D inhibition in kidney, and completely prevented a mercury-induced increase of TBARS content and decrease of ascorbic acid levels in kidney. In vitro, HgCl 2 and Na 2 SeO 3 inhibited renal and hepatic ALA-D, while HgCl 2 increased TBARS in renal and hepatic tissue preparations. Na 2 SeO 3 increased the rate of glutathione oxidation in vitro. Results indicated that Na 2 SeO 3 protected against HgCl 2 effects in vivo (prevention of mercury interaction with thiol groups and of mercury-induced oxidative damage). In vitro, Na 2 SeO 3 did not prevent mercury effects, but potentiated ALA-D inhibition by mercury, probably due to its ability to oxidize thiol groups

  3. Intra-particle migration of mercury in granular polysulfide-rubber-coated activated carbon (PSR-AC)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Eun-Ah; Masue-Slowey, Yoko; Fendorf, Scott; Luthy, Richard G.

    2011-01-01

    The depth profile of mercuric ion after the reaction with polysulfide-rubber-coated activated carbon (PSR-AC) was investigated using micro-x-ray fluorescence (μ-XRF) imaging techniques and mathematical modeling. The μ-XRF results revealed that mercury was concentrated at 0~100 μm from the exterior of the particle after three months of treatment with PSR-AC in 10 ppm HgCl2 aqueous solution. The μ-X-ray absorption near edge spectroscopic (μ-XANES) analyses indicated HgS as a major mercury species, and suggested that the intra-particle mercury transport involved a chemical reaction with PSR polymer. An intra-particle mass transfer model was developed based on either a Langmuir sorption isotherm with liquid phase diffusion (Langmuir model) or a kinetic sorption with surface diffusion (kinetic sorption model). The Langmuir model predicted the general trend of mercury diffusion, although at a slower rate than observed from the μ-XRF map. A kinetic sorption model suggested faster mercury transport, which overestimated the movement of mercuric ions through an exchange reaction between the fast and slow reaction sites. Both μ-XRF and mathematical modeling results suggest mercury removal occurs not only at the outer surface of the PSR-AC particle but also at some interior regions due to a large PSR surface area within an AC particle. PMID:22133913

  4. Long-term trends of surface-water mercury and methylmercury concentrations downstream of historic mining within the Carson River watershed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morway, Eric D; Thodal, Carl E; Marvin-DiPasquale, Mark

    2017-10-01

    The Carson River is a vital water resource for local municipalities and migratory birds travelling the Pacific Flyway. Historic mining practices that used mercury (Hg) to extract gold from Comstock Lode ore has left much of the river system heavily contaminated with Hg, a practice that continues in many parts of the world today. Between 1998 and 2013, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) collected and analyzed Carson River water for Hg and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations resulting in a sixteen year record of unfiltered total mercury (uf.THg), filtered (dissolved) Hg (f.THg), total methylmercury (uf.MeHg), filtered MeHg (f.MeHg), and particulate-bound THg (p.THg) and MeHg (p.MeHg) concentrations. This represents one of the longest continuous records of Hg speciation data for any riverine system, thereby providing a unique opportunity to evaluate long-term trends in concentrations and annual loads. During the period of analysis, uf.THg concentration and load trended downward at rates of -0.85% and -1.8% per year, respectively. Conversely, the f.THg concentration increased at a rate of 1.7% per year between 1998 and 2005, and 4.9% per year between 2005 and 2013. Trends in flow-normalized partition coefficients for both Hg and MeHg suggest a statistically significant shift from the particulate to the filtered phase. The upwardly accelerating f.THg concentration and observed shift from the solid phase to the aqueous phase among the pools of Hg and MeHg within the river water column signals an increased risk of deteriorating ecological conditions in the lower basin with respect to Hg contamination. More broadly, the 16-year trend analysis, completed 140 years after the commencement of major Hg releases to the Carson River, provides a poignant example of the ongoing legacy left behind by gold and silver mining techniques that relied on Hg amalgamation, and a cautionary tale for regions still pursuing the practice in other countries. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  5. Seismic activity in the Sunnyside mining district, Carbon and Emery Counties, Utah, during 1968

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunrud, C. Richard; Maberry, John O.; Hernandez, Jerome H.

    1970-01-01

    More than 20,000 local earth tremors were recorded by the seismic monitoring network in the Sunnyside mining district during 1968. This is about 40 percent of the number of tremors recorded by the network in 1967. In 1968 a total of 281 tremors were of sufficient magnitude to be located accurately--about 50 percent of the number of tremors in 1967 that were located accurately. As in previous years, nearly all the earth tremors originated near, or within a few thousand feet of, the mine workings. This distribution indicates that mine-induced stress changes caused most of the seismic activity. However, over periods of weeks and months there were significant changes in the distribution of seismic activity caused by tremors that were not directly related to mining but probably were caused by adjustment of natural stresses 6r by a complex combination of both natural and mine-induced stress changes. In 1968 the distribution of tremor hypocenters varied considerably with time, relative to active mining areas and to faults present in the mine workings. During the first 6 months, most tremors originated along or near faults that trend close to or through the active mine workings. However, in the last 6 months, the tremor hypocenters tended to concentrate in the rock mass closer to, or around, the active mining areas. This shift in concentration of seismic activity with time has been noted throughout the district many times since recording began in 1963, and is apparently caused by spontaneous releases of stored strain energy resulting from mine-induced stress changes. These spontaneous releases of strain energy, together with rock creep, apparently are the mechanism of adjustment within the rock mass toward equilibrium conditions, which are continually disrupted by mining. Although potentially hazardous bumps were rare in the Sunnyside mining district during 1968, smaller bumps and rock falls were more common in a given active mining area whenever hypocenters of larger

  6. Neutron activation analysis for development of mercury sorbent based on blue-green alga salipriina palatinates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frontasyeva, M.V.; Kirkesali, E.I.; Aksenova, N.G.; Mosulishvili, L.M.; Belokobylsky, A.I.; Khizanishvili, A.I.

    2005-01-01

    Epithermal neutron activation analysis was used to study interaction of blue-green alga Spirulina platensis with toxic metal mercury. Various concentrations of Hg(II) were added to cell cultures in a nutrient medium. The dynamic of accumulation of Hg was investigated over days in relation to Spirulina biomass growth. The process of Hg adsorption by Spirulina biomass was studied in short-time experiments. The isotherm of adsorption was / out in Freindlich coordinates. Natural Spirulina biomass has potential to be used in the remediation of sewage waters at Hg concentrations ∼ 100 μg/1

  7. Enhancement Experiment on Cementitious Activity of Copper-Mine Tailings in a Geopolymer System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Yu

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Copper-mine tailings are the residual products after the extraction of precious copper metal from copper ores, and their storage can create numerous environmental problems. Many researchers have used copper-mine tailings for the preparation of geopolymers. This paper studies the enhancement of the cementitious activity of copper-mine tailings in geopolymer systems. First, copper-mine tailings are activated through mechanical grinding activation. Then, the mechanically activated copper-mine tailings are further processed through thermal activation and alkaline-roasting activation. The cementitious activity index of copper-mine tailings is characterized through the degree of leaching concentration of Si and Al. It was observed that the Si and Al leaching concentration of mechanically activated tailings was increased by 26.03% and 93.33%, respectively. The concentration of Si and Al was increased by 54.19% and 119.92%, respectively. For alkaline-roasting activation, roasting time, temperature and the mass ratio of copper-mine tailings to NaOH (C/N ratio were evaluated through orthogonal tests, and the best condition for activation was 120 min at 600 °C with a C/N ratio of 5:1. In this study, scanning electron microscopy (SEM, X-ray diffraction (XRD and infra-red (IR analysis show that mechanical, thermal and alkaline-roasting activation could be used to improve the cementitious activity index of copper-mine tailings.

  8. Heavy metals content in acid mine drainage at abandoned and active mining area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatar, Hazirah; Rahim, Sahibin Abd; Razi, Wan Mohd; Sahrani, Fathul Karim

    2013-11-01

    This study was conducted at former Barite Mine, Tasik Chini and former iron mine Sungai Lembing in Pahang, and also active gold mine at Lubuk Mandi, Terengganu. This study was conducted to determine heavy metals content in acid mine drainage (AMD) at the study areas. Fourteen water sampling stations within the study area were chosen for this purpose. In situ water characteristic determinations were carried out for pH, electrical conductivity (EC), redox potential (ORP) and total dissolved solid (TDS) using multi parameter YSI 556. Water samples were collected and analysed in the laboratory for sulfate, total acidity and heavy metals which follow the standard methods of APHA (1999) and HACH (2003). Heavy metals in the water samples were determined directly using Inductive Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS). Data obtained showed a highly acidic mean of pH values with pH ranged from 2.6 ± 0.3 to 3.2 ± 0.2. Mean of electrical conductivity ranged from 0.57 ± 0.25 to 1.01 ± 0.70 mS/cm. Redox potential mean ranged from 487.40 ± 13.68 to 579.9 ± 80.46 mV. Mean of total dissolved solids (TDS) in AMD ranged from 306.50 ± 125.16 to 608.14 ± 411.64 mg/L. Mean of sulfate concentration in AMD ranged from 32.33 ± 1.41 to 207.08 ± 85.06 mg/L, whereas the mean of total acidity ranged from 69.17 ± 5.89 to 205.12 ± 170.83 mgCaCO3/L. Heavy metals content in AMD is dominated by Fe, Cu, Mn and Zn with mean concentrations range from 2.16 ± 1.61 to 36.31 ± 41.02 mg/L, 0.17 ± 0.13 to 11.06 ± 2.85 mg/L, 1.12 ± 0.65 to 7.17 ± 6.05 mg/L and 0.62 ± 0.21 to 6.56 ± 4.11 mg/L, respectively. Mean concentrations of Ni, Co, As, Cd and Pb were less than 0.21, 0.51, 0.24, 0.05 and 0.45 mg/L, respectively. Significant correlation occurred between Fe and Mn, Cu, Zn, Co and Cd. Water pH correlated negatively with all the heavy metals, whereas total acidity, sulfate, total dissolved solid, and redox potential correlated positively. The concentration of heavy metals in the AMD

  9. Fish and wildlife evaluation of wetlands created by mining activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kepler, S.R.; Sabolcik, T.M.

    1994-01-01

    Four lacustrine wetland systems in Pennsylvania created by mining activities, either by sand and gravel or bituminous coal removal, were samples to determine the functional values of the fish and wildlife habitat. Most of the sampled sites were remnants of pre-act (1977) mining where minimal, if any, reclamation techniques were used. Natural succession within these impoundments have created ecosystems different in quality based on the availability of suitable habitat. Sampling techniques used to evaluate the wetland systems included initial water quality analyses, and aquatic habitat mapping using visual observations, LCD recorder, and computerized chart recorder. Fish populations were sampled using a boat mounted D.C. electrofishing unit with game fish being collected, weighted and measured and population estimates calculated as catch per unit effort (CPUE). Wildlife utilization of each site was conducted during the spring nesting season. Each site was surveyed for species utilization, nest searches determined whether nesting occurred and nesting success was noted. Wildlife utilization was determined by observation, tracks, calls, scat, etc. Whenever possible sites were monitored during the fall migration period to determine whether the sites were being utilized by migratory waterfowl. Wetland vegetative studies were also conducted at each site. Wetland species were identified and concentrations and dispersion of each wetland species were noted. Each sampled wetland data set is presented separately because of the variabilities between sampled sites based on the geology, reclamation status, and habitat

  10. Removal of mercury from aqueous solutions using activated carbon prepared from agricultural by-product/waste.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, M Madhava; Reddy, D H K Kumar; Venkateswarlu, Padala; Seshaiah, K

    2009-01-01

    Removal of mercury from aqueous solutions using activated carbon prepared from Ceiba pentandra hulls, Phaseolus aureus hulls and Cicer arietinum waste was investigated. The influence of various parameters such as effect of pH, contact time, initial metal ion concentration and adsorbent dose for the removal of mercury was studied using a batch process. The experiments demonstrated that the adsorption process corresponds to the pseudo-second-order-kinetic models and the equilibrium adsorption data fit the Freundlich isotherm model well. The prepared adsorbents ACCPH, ACPAH and ACCAW had removal capacities of 25.88 mg/g, 23.66 mg/g and 22.88 mg/g, respectively, at an initial Hg(II) concentration of 40 mg/L. The order of Hg(II) removal capacities of these three adsorbents was ACCPH>ACPAH>ACCAW. The adsorption behavior of the activated carbon is explained on the basis of its chemical nature. The feasibility of regeneration of spent activated carbon adsorbents for recovery of Hg(II) and reuse of the adsorbent was determined using HCl solution.

  11. Mercury accumulation in soils and plants in the Almadén mining district, Spain: one of the most contaminated sites on Earth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina, José Antonio; Oyarzun, Roberto; Esbrí, José María; Higueras, Pablo

    2006-10-01

    Although mercury (Hg) mining in the Almadén district ceased in May 2002, the consequences of 2000 years of mining in the district has resulted in the dissemination of Hg into the surrounding environment where it poses an evident risk to biota and human health. This risk needs to be properly evaluated. The uptake of Hg has been found to be plant-specific. To establish the different manners in which plants absorb Hg, we carried out a survey of Hg levels in the soils and plants in the most representative habitats of this Mediterranean area and found that the Hg concentrations varied greatly and were dependent on the sample being tested (0.13-2,695 microg g(-1) Hg). For example, the root samples had concentrations ranging from 0.06 (Oenanthe crocata, Rumex induratus) to 1095 (Polypogon monspeliensis) microg g(-1) Hg, while in the leaf samples, the range was from 0.16 (Cyperus longus) to 1278 (Polypogon monspeliensis) microg g(-1) Hg. There are four well-differentiated patterns of Hg uptake: (1) the rate of uptake is constant, independent of Hg concentration in the soil (e.g., Pistacia lentiscus, Quercus rotundifolia); (2) after an initial linear relationship between uptake and soil concentration, no further increase in Hg(plant) is observed (e.g., Asparagus acutifolius, Cistus ladanifer); (3) no increase in uptake is recorded until a threshold is surpassed, and thereafter a linear relationship between Hg(plant) and Hg(soil) is established (e.g., Rumex bucephalophorus, Cistus crispus); (4) there is no relationship between Hg(plant) and Hg(soil )(e.g., Oenanthe crocata and Cistus monspeliensis). Overall, the Hg concentrations found in plants from the Almadén district clearly reflect the importance of contamination processes throughout the study region.

  12. An Investigation of Organic and Inorganic Mercury Exposure and Blood Pressure in a Small-Scale Gold Mining Community in Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mozhgon Rajaee

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available There is increasing concern about the cardiovascular effects of mercury (Hg exposure, and that organic methylmercury and inorganic Hg2+ may affect the cardiovascular system and blood pressure differentially. In small-scale gold mining communities where inorganic, elemental Hg exposures are high, little is known about the effects of Hg on blood pressure. In 2011, we assessed the relationship between Hg exposure and blood pressure (BP in a cross-sectional study of adults from a small-scale gold mining community, Kejetia, and subsistence farming community, Gorogo, in Ghana’s Upper East Region. Participants’ resting heart rate and BP were measured, and hair and urine samples were provided to serve as biomarkers of organic and inorganic Hg exposure, respectively. Participants included 70 miners and 26 non-miners from Kejetia and 75 non-miners from Gorogo. Total specific gravity-adjusted urinary and hair Hg was higher among Kejetia miners than Kejetia non-miners and Gorogo participants (median urinary Hg: 5.17, 1.18, and 0.154 µg/L, respectively; hair Hg: 0.945, 0.419, and 0.181 µg/g, respectively. Hypertension was prevalent in 17.7% of Kejetia and 21.3% of Gorogo participants. Urinary and hair Hg were not significantly associated with systolic or diastolic BP for Kejetia or Gorogo participants while adjusting for sex, age, and smoking status. Although our results follow trends seen in other studies, the associations were not of statistical significance. Given the unique study population and high exposures to inorganic Hg, the work contained here will help increase our understanding of the cardiovascular effects of Hg.

  13. An Investigation of Organic and Inorganic Mercury Exposure and Blood Pressure in a Small-Scale Gold Mining Community in Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaee, Mozhgon; Sánchez, Brisa N; Renne, Elisha P; Basu, Niladri

    2015-08-21

    There is increasing concern about the cardiovascular effects of mercury (Hg) exposure, and that organic methylmercury and inorganic Hg(2+) may affect the cardiovascular system and blood pressure differentially. In small-scale gold mining communities where inorganic, elemental Hg exposures are high, little is known about the effects of Hg on blood pressure. In 2011, we assessed the relationship between Hg exposure and blood pressure (BP) in a cross-sectional study of adults from a small-scale gold mining community, Kejetia, and subsistence farming community, Gorogo, in Ghana's Upper East Region. Participants' resting heart rate and BP were measured, and hair and urine samples were provided to serve as biomarkers of organic and inorganic Hg exposure, respectively. Participants included 70 miners and 26 non-miners from Kejetia and 75 non-miners from Gorogo. Total specific gravity-adjusted urinary and hair Hg was higher among Kejetia miners than Kejetia non-miners and Gorogo participants (median urinary Hg: 5.17, 1.18, and 0.154 µg/L, respectively; hair Hg: 0.945, 0.419, and 0.181 µg/g, respectively). Hypertension was prevalent in 17.7% of Kejetia and 21.3% of Gorogo participants. Urinary and hair Hg were not significantly associated with systolic or diastolic BP for Kejetia or Gorogo participants while adjusting for sex, age, and smoking status. Although our results follow trends seen in other studies, the associations were not of statistical significance. Given the unique study population and high exposures to inorganic Hg, the work contained here will help increase our understanding of the cardiovascular effects of Hg.

  14. An Investigation of Organic and Inorganic Mercury Exposure and Blood Pressure in a Small-Scale Gold Mining Community in Ghana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaee, Mozhgon; Sánchez, Brisa N.; Renne, Elisha P.; Basu, Niladri

    2015-01-01

    There is increasing concern about the cardiovascular effects of mercury (Hg) exposure, and that organic methylmercury and inorganic Hg2+ may affect the cardiovascular system and blood pressure differentially. In small-scale gold mining communities where inorganic, elemental Hg exposures are high, little is known about the effects of Hg on blood pressure. In 2011, we assessed the relationship between Hg exposure and blood pressure (BP) in a cross-sectional study of adults from a small-scale gold mining community, Kejetia, and subsistence farming community, Gorogo, in Ghana’s Upper East Region. Participants’ resting heart rate and BP were measured, and hair and urine samples were provided to serve as biomarkers of organic and inorganic Hg exposure, respectively. Participants included 70 miners and 26 non-miners from Kejetia and 75 non-miners from Gorogo. Total specific gravity-adjusted urinary and hair Hg was higher among Kejetia miners than Kejetia non-miners and Gorogo participants (median urinary Hg: 5.17, 1.18, and 0.154 µg/L, respectively; hair Hg: 0.945, 0.419, and 0.181 µg/g, respectively). Hypertension was prevalent in 17.7% of Kejetia and 21.3% of Gorogo participants. Urinary and hair Hg were not significantly associated with systolic or diastolic BP for Kejetia or Gorogo participants while adjusting for sex, age, and smoking status. Although our results follow trends seen in other studies, the associations were not of statistical significance. Given the unique study population and high exposures to inorganic Hg, the work contained here will help increase our understanding of the cardiovascular effects of Hg. PMID:26308023

  15. Comparison of Granular Activated Carbon, Natural Clinoptilolite Zeolite, and Anthracite Packed Columns in Removing Mercury from Drinking Water

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Taghi Samadi

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Development of effective methods for the removal of such pollutants as heavy metals (e.g., mercury from surface and ground water resources introduced by municipal and industrial wastewaters seems to be inevitable, especially in the face of the importance of water reuse in combating water shortages, limited availability of water resources, and imminent risks of a water crisis in Iran. A number of methods are already available for the removal of mercury from water resources. However, these techniques must be investigated for their practicability and economy, in addition to their not only effectiveness. In this research, granular activated carbon, natural zeolite, and anthracite packed-columns were investigated as cheap and effective adsorbents for the removal of mercury. Moreover, the effects of changes in pH (6-8, influent mercury concentrations (0.25, 0.5, 0.75, and 1 ppm, contact time (0.5, 1, 2, 3 hr were investigated. Mercury concentration in the samples was determined using a ditizon indicator and spectrophotometry at 492 nm. Results showed that decreasing influent mercury concentration from 1 ppm to 0.25 ppm (under constant conditions increased the removal efficiencies of anthracite, granular activated carbon, and zeolite columns from22%, 63%, and 55% to 28%, 72%, and 64%, respectively. Increasing contact time from 0.5 hr to 3 hr caused the removal efficiencies of these columns to increase from 22%, 56%, and 54% to 42%, 86%, and 82%, respectively. Also, increasing pH level led to increased removal efficiencies of the studied columns. It was found that contact time played a more effective role in enhancing mercury removal efficiency in the granular activated carbon column than in the other two columns. The ranges of mercury removal efficiency obtained for the granular activated carbon, natural zeolite, and anthracite columns under various conditions were (51%-92%, (42%-88%, and (16%-52%, respectively. Based on these results, granular

  16. Antioxidant and mercury chelating activity of Psidium guajava var. pomifera L. leaves hydroalcoholic extract.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinho, Antonio Ivanildo; Oliveira, Cláudia Sirlene; Lovato, Fabricio Luís; Waczuk, Emily Pansera; Piccoli, Bruna Candia; Boligon, Aline Augusti; Leite, Nadghia Figueredo; Coutinho, Henrique Douglas Melo; Posser, Thais; Da Rocha, João Batista Teixeira; Franco, Jeferson Luis

    2017-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is widely distributed in the environment and is known to produce several adverse effects in organisms. The aim of the present study was to examine the in vitro antioxidant activity and Hg chelating ability of the hydroalcoholic extract of Psidium guajava leaves (HEPG). In addition, the potential protective effects of HEPG against Hg(II) were evaluated using a yeast model (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). HEPG was found to exert significant antioxidant activity in 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl scavenger and inhibition of lipid peroxidation induced by Fe(II) assays in a concentration-dependent manner. The extract also exhibited significant Hg(II) chelating activity. In yeast, Hg(II) induced a significant decrease in cell viability. In contrast, HEPG partially prevented the fall in cell viability induced by Hg(II). In conclusion, HEPG exhibited protective effects against Hg(II)-mediated toxicity, which may be related to both antioxidant and Hg(II)-chelating activities.

  17. Technical activities of the Project Surata River for the handling of mercury and cyanide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinzon, Juan Manuel; Ruiz, Jorge Nelson; Jaimes, Cristian Libardo

    2004-01-01

    The technical works executed by the project have been framed in the philosophy of reducing the contamination for mercury and cyanide in the operations of auriferous benefit, without causing detriment in the economic revenues of the miners, on the contrary, trying to carry out a better use of the auriferous mineral. In this sense, the project has toasted from simple solutions that allow to reduce the use of the pollutants mentioned a little until solutions more complex than they require introduction of gravimetric teams in pro of reducing the quantity of minerals amalgamated y/o cyanidates. This way an action plan was developed that contemplates a diagnosis stage, followed by a stage of executions in which has been worked in the modification of the systems of gravimetric concentration, process of amalgamation and in the cyanidation process. Particular emphasis has noticed to the cyanidation process for percolation, given its importance in the benefit and its degree of environmental affectation. Through a revision of the method used by the miners, it was possible to modify the technique and to reduce in 40% the global consumption of cyanide in the companies of the District Mining Vetas - California. Metallurgic studies in the advised companies allowed to verify that strengthening the gravimetric concentration is possible to gather 80% of the gold (heavy minerals) in 15% of the processed global material. Under these conditions the introduction of the cyanidation is facilitated by agitation, allowing to reduce the contamination for cyanide and to make a bigger use of the auriferous mineral

  18. Abandoned Smolník mine (Slovakia – a catchment area affected by mining activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lintnerová, Otília

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Smolník is a historical Cu-mining area that was exploited from the 14th century to 1990. The Smolník mine was definitively closed and flooded in 1990–1994. Acid mine drainage discharging from the flooded mine (pH = 3.83, Fe = 542 mg/l, SO42– = 3642 mg/l, Cu = 1880 µg/l, Zn = 9599 µg/l, As = 108 mg/l acidified and contaminated the Smolník Creek water, which transported pollution into the Hnilec River catchment. The Smolník mine waste area has been used as a model area to document pollution of waters, stream sediments, and soils by metals and other toxic elements. Major goals of this complex study were to document creek water transport of the main pollutants (Fe, sulphates, Cu, Al, As, etc. in the form of suspended solids, to investigate elements mobility in common mine waste (rock and processing waste heaps and tailing impoundment and in the soil on the basis of neutralization and leach experiments. Different methodologies and techniques for sampling and chemical and mineralogical characterization of samples were used and checked to evaluate environmental risk of this abandoned mine area.

  19. Mining activities of the Cogema group; Activite miniere du groupe Cogema

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anon.

    1996-12-31

    This brochure is a general presentation of the mining activities of the COGEMA group. COGEMA is specialized in the whole operations of the nuclear fuel cycle and is responsible for about 20% of the worldwide uranium production with the exploitation of French mines and its participation in the exploitation of mines abroad, mainly in Canada, USA, Niger and Gabon. This document is divided in seven chapters: the search for uranium ores and the mining prospecting, the uranium deposits and the worldwide market, the exploitation of uranium ores (techniques and mines exploited by the COGEMA group), the processing of ores, the radioactivity and the mining installations, the environmental protection and the rehabilitation of sites (environmental survey and management of mining sites), application of COGEMA`s know-how to other domains such as: gold ore processing, research and development studies, instrumentation and radioprotection, soils cleansing and sites rehabilitation. This brochure is illustrated with several photos and pictures. (J.S.).

  20. Evaluation of mercury pollution in cultivated and wild plants from two small communities of the Tapajós gold mining reserve, Pará State, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egler, Silvia G; Rodrigues-Filho, Saulo; Villas-Bôas, Roberto C; Beinhoff, Christian

    2006-09-01

    This study examines the total Hg contamination in soil and sediments, and the correlation between the total Hg concentration in soil and vegetables in two small scale gold mining areas, São Chico and Creporizinho, in the State of Para, Brazilian Amazon. Total Hg values for soil samples for both study areas are higher than region background values (ca. 0.15 mg/kg). At São Chico, mean values in soils samples are higher than at Creporizinho, but without significant differences at alpha1 in all of São Chico's produce samples, soil-plant parts regression were not significant, and Hg uptake probably occurs through stomata by atmospheric mercury deposition. Wild plants aboveground:root ratios were <1 at both study areas, and soil-plant parts regressions were significant in samples of Creporizinho, suggesting that they function as an excluder. The average total contents of Hg in edible parts of produces were close to FAO/WHO/JECFA PTWI values in São Chico area, and much lower in Creporizinho. However, Hg inorganic small gastrointestinal absorption reduces its adverse health effects.

  1. Online Nonparametric Bayesian Activity Mining and Analysis From Surveillance Video.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bastani, Vahid; Marcenaro, Lucio; Regazzoni, Carlo S

    2016-05-01

    A method for online incremental mining of activity patterns from the surveillance video stream is presented in this paper. The framework consists of a learning block in which Dirichlet process mixture model is employed for the incremental clustering of trajectories. Stochastic trajectory pattern models are formed using the Gaussian process regression of the corresponding flow functions. Moreover, a sequential Monte Carlo method based on Rao-Blackwellized particle filter is proposed for tracking and online classification as well as the detection of abnormality during the observation of an object. Experimental results on real surveillance video data are provided to show the performance of the proposed algorithm in different tasks of trajectory clustering, classification, and abnormality detection.

  2. Mining anaerobic digester consortia metagenomes for secreted carbohydrate active enzymes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wilkens, Casper; Busk, Peter Kamp; Pilgaard, Bo

    thermophilic and mesophilic ADs a wide variety of carbohydrate active enzyme functions were discovered in the metagenomic sequencing of the microbial consortia. The most dominating type of glycoside hydrolases were β-glucosidases (up to 27%), α-amylases (up to 10%), α-glucosidases (up to 8%), α......, and food wastes (Alvarado et al., 2014). The processes and the roles of the microorganisms that are involved in biomass conversion and methane production in ADs are still not fully understood. We are investigating thermophilic and mesophilic ADs that use wastewater surplus sludge for methane production...... was done with the Peptide Pattern Recognition (PPR) program (Busk and Lange, 2013), which is a novel non-alignment based approach that can predict function of e.g. CAZymes. PPR identifies a set of short conserved sequences, which can be used as a finger print when mining genomes for novel enzymes. In both...

  3. Indoor metallic pollution related to mining activity in the Bolivian Altiplano

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fonturbel, Francisco E.; Barbieri, Enio; Herbas, Cristian; Barbieri, Flavia L.; Gardon, Jacques

    2011-01-01

    The environmental pollution associated with mining and metallurgical activities reaches its greatest extent in several Andean cities and villages. Many locations in this area have accumulated through centuries a large amount of mining wastes, often disregarding the magnitude of this situation. However, in these naturally mineralized regions, there is little information available stating the exact role of mining and metallurgical industries in urban pollution. In this study, we demonstrated that the various metallic elements present in indoor dust (As, Cd, Cu, Pb, Sb, Sn, Zn) had a common origin and this contamination was increased by the proximity to the mines. Lead dust concentration was found at concerning levels for public health. In addition, wrong behaviors such as carrying mining workwear home contributed to this indoor dust pollution. Consequently, the constant exposure of the population could represent a potential health hazard for vulnerable groups, especially children. - Highlights: → We measured polymetallic pollution in household indoor dust from a mining town. → Toxic elements (Pb, As, Cd, Sb) in dust are correlated, suggesting a common origin. → The most polluted houses are within a 1 km radius around the mining center. → Carrying mining workwear home increases indoor pollution. → Lead concentrations in dust represent a serious concern for Public Health (600 μg/g). - In a typical Andean mining city, the urban indoor pollution with toxic metallic elements is directly related to the closeness of the mining activities.

  4. Indoor metallic pollution related to mining activity in the Bolivian Altiplano

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fonturbel, Francisco E., E-mail: fonturbel@ug.uchile.cl [Departamento de Ciencias Ecologicas, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Chile, Santiago (Chile); Barbieri, Enio [IRD-HSM (Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement), La Paz (Bolivia, Plurinational State of); Herbas, Cristian [Universidad Mayor de San Andres, IGEMA Institute (Instituto de Investigaciones Geologicas y del Medio Ambiente), La Paz (Bolivia, Plurinational State of); Barbieri, Flavia L.; Gardon, Jacques [IRD-HSM (Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement), La Paz (Bolivia, Plurinational State of); Universidad Mayor de San Andres, SELADIS Institute (Instituto de Servicios de Laboratorio para el Diagnostico e Investigacion en Salud), La Paz (Bolivia, Plurinational State of)

    2011-10-15

    The environmental pollution associated with mining and metallurgical activities reaches its greatest extent in several Andean cities and villages. Many locations in this area have accumulated through centuries a large amount of mining wastes, often disregarding the magnitude of this situation. However, in these naturally mineralized regions, there is little information available stating the exact role of mining and metallurgical industries in urban pollution. In this study, we demonstrated that the various metallic elements present in indoor dust (As, Cd, Cu, Pb, Sb, Sn, Zn) had a common origin and this contamination was increased by the proximity to the mines. Lead dust concentration was found at concerning levels for public health. In addition, wrong behaviors such as carrying mining workwear home contributed to this indoor dust pollution. Consequently, the constant exposure of the population could represent a potential health hazard for vulnerable groups, especially children. - Highlights: > We measured polymetallic pollution in household indoor dust from a mining town. > Toxic elements (Pb, As, Cd, Sb) in dust are correlated, suggesting a common origin. > The most polluted houses are within a 1 km radius around the mining center. > Carrying mining workwear home increases indoor pollution. > Lead concentrations in dust represent a serious concern for Public Health (600 {mu}g/g). - In a typical Andean mining city, the urban indoor pollution with toxic metallic elements is directly related to the closeness of the mining activities.

  5. Investigation for closedown activities in the uranium mine Zirovski vrh

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cadez, F.; Likar, B.; Logar, Z.

    1995-01-01

    The uranium mine Zirovski vrh was temporarily shut down by order of Government of the Republic of Slovenia in the second half of the year 1990. After the Slovenian parliament passed the law on definite closing down of the uranium mine exploitation and on rehabilitation the effect of mining on the environment in July 1992 was starting to make the Programme of the Permanent Closing down of the Uranium ore Exploitation and Permanent Protection of the Environment in Uranium Mine that is in final phase. In the meantime the studies that would define necessary parameters for elaborating the projects of closure have been done. Two essential studies for the realization of closure of mine are working out: 1. Previous dewatering of the deposit by boreholes for diminishing of pollution of mine water by uranium; 2. Filling of partially collapsed stops by hydromettallurgical waste to assure permanent stability above the mine spaces. The aim of the first study is to reduce percolation of mine water through the mineralized parts of the deposit by drilling boreholes in the footwall and in the hanging wall. Pollution of mine water which outflows from the lowest tunnel in the local creek Brebovscica should be diminished. Tests of stability and lixiviation on the cubes that are made of hydrometallurgical waste are the topic of the second study. Cement and different additives are added in the cubes and testings have been made in situ. (author). 3 refs, 3 figs, 2 tabs

  6. Changing patterns in the use, recycling, and material substitution of mercury in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilburn, David R.

    2013-01-01

    the United States since 1992. In 1996, the three leading end-use sectors for mercury in the United States were chloralkali manufacturing (accounting for 38 percent of consumption), electrical and electronic instrumentation (13 percent of consumption), and instruments and measuring devices (11 percent of consumption). In 2010, the three leading end-use sectors were dental amalgam (accounting for between 35 and 57 percent of consumption), electrical and electronic instrumentation (29 percent of consumption), and batteries (8 percent of consumption). Mercury use in lighting is increasing because incandescent lights are being phased out in favor of mercury-containing compact fluorescent bulbs, but the demand for mercury per unit produced is small. Dental amalgam constituted the largest amount of mercury in use in the United States. One study reported about 290 t of mercury in dental amalgam was estimated to be contained in human mouths, an estimated 30 t of mercury amalgam was treated as waste, 28.5 t of mercury amalgam was released to the environment, 6 t of amalgam was recycled, and 3.5 t was treated and stored in landfills in 2009. Mercury contained in products recovered by State, municipal, or industry collection activities is recycled, but the estimated overall recycling rate is less than 10 percent. Increasingly, the U.S. mercury recycling industry has been processing a significant amount of mercury-containing material derived from foreign gold mining operations or decommissioned mercury-cell chloralkali plants. Regulation of mercury export and storage is expected to result in surplus mercury inventories in the United States. The Mercury Export Ban Act of 2008 limits elemental mercury exports for unregulated uses such as artisanal gold mining after January 1, 2013, and requires development of adequate long-term storage facilities in the United States for elemental mercury. During the past 4 years, producers and recyclers of elemental mercury have been exporting

  7. Mercury Bioaccumulation in the Brazilian Amazonian Tucunares (Cichla sp., Cichlidae, Perciformes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Josefina Reyna Kurtz

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available There are emissions of mercury to the atmosphere, soil and rivers of the Brazilian Amazon stem from many sources. Once in the atmosphere, the metal is oxidized and immediately deposited. In the water, the transformation to methylmercury takes place mostly by the action of microorganisms. The formation of methylmercury increases the dispersion and bioavailability of the element in the aquatic environment. Methylmercury can be assimilated by plankton and enters the food chain. The concentration of mercury increases further up in the trophic levels of the chain and reaches the highest values in carnivorous fishes like tucunare. Therefore, mercury emissions cause the contamination of natural resources and increase risks to the health of regular fish consumers. The objective of this work was to study the bioaccumulation of mercury in tucunares (Cichla sp., top predators of the food chain. The fishes were collected at two locations representative of the Amazonian fluvial ecosystem, in the state of Pará, Brazil, in 1992 and 2001. One location is near a former informal gold mining area. The other is far from the mining area and is considered pristine. Average values of total mercury concentration and accumulation rates for four different collection groups were compared and discussed. Tucunares collected in 2001 presented higher mercury contents and accumulated mercury faster than tucunares collected in 1992 notwithstanding the decline of mining activities in this period. The aggravation of the mercury contamination with time not only in an area where informal gold mining was practiced but also far from this area is confirmed.

  8. Assessment of environmental and health risks in former polymetallic ore mining and smelting area, Slovakia: Spatial distribution and accumulation of mercury in four different ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Árvay, Július; Demková, Lenka; Hauptvogl, Martin; Michalko, Miloslav; Bajčan, Daniel; Stanovič, Radovan; Tomáš, Ján; Hrstková, Miroslava; Trebichalský, Pavol

    2017-10-01

    Former long-term mining and smelting of pollymetallic ores in the Middle Spiš area caused a serious contamination problem of the environment with heavy metals and metalloids, especially mercury (Hg). Several studies have reported concentration of Hg in the area but this paper provides first detailed characterization of Hg contamination of different environmental components in agricultural, forest, grassland and urban ecosystems. The ecosystems are in different distances from emission sources - former mercury and copper smelting plants in NE Slovakia. Total Hg content was studied in soil/substrate samples (n = 234) and characteristic biological samples (Athyrium filix-femina (L.) Roth, Macrolepiota procera (Scop.) Singer, Boletus edulis Bull., Cyanoboletus pulverulentus (Opat.) Gelardi, Vizzini & Simonini, Triticum aestivum (L.), Poa pratensis (L.)) (n = 234) collected in the above-mentioned ecosystems. The level of contamination and environmental risks were assessed by contamination factor (C f ), index of geoaccumulation (I geo ) and potential environmental risk index (PER). To determine the level of transition of Hg from abiotic to biotic environment, bioconcentration factor (BCF) was used. To determine a health risk resulting from regular and long-term consumption of the locally available species, the results of the Hg content were compared with the Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake (PTWI) for Hg defined by World Health Organization. The results suggest that almost 63% of the area belong to the very high risk category and 80% of the sampling sites shown very high contamination factor. Geoaccumulation index showed that almost 30% of the area is very strongly contaminated and only 8% is not contaminated with Hg. Spearman's correlation relationship confirmed that the values of PER, BCF, C f and I geo decreased with an increasing distance from the pollution source. The percentage of contribution to PTWI ranged between 5.76-69.0% for adults and 11.5-138% for

  9. Metallic mercury recycling. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beck, M.A.

    1994-07-01

    Metallic mercury is known to be a hazardous material and is regulated as such. The disposal of mercury, usually by landfill, is expensive and does not remove mercury from the environment. Results from the Metallic Mercury Recycling Project have demonstrated that metallic mercury is a good candidate for reclamation and recycling. Most of the potential contamination of mercury resides in the scum floating on the surface of the mercury. Pinhole filtration was demonstrated to be an inexpensive and easy way of removing residues from mercury. The analysis method is shown to be sufficient for present release practices, and should be sufficient for future release requirements. Data from tests are presented. The consistently higher level of activity of the filter residue versus the bulk mercury is discussed. Recommendations for the recycling procedure are made.

  10. Metallic mercury recycling. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beck, M.A.

    1994-01-01

    Metallic mercury is known to be a hazardous material and is regulated as such. The disposal of mercury, usually by landfill, is expensive and does not remove mercury from the environment. Results from the Metallic Mercury Recycling Project have demonstrated that metallic mercury is a good candidate for reclamation and recycling. Most of the potential contamination of mercury resides in the scum floating on the surface of the mercury. Pinhole filtration was demonstrated to be an inexpensive and easy way of removing residues from mercury. The analysis method is shown to be sufficient for present release practices, and should be sufficient for future release requirements. Data from tests are presented. The consistently higher level of activity of the filter residue versus the bulk mercury is discussed. Recommendations for the recycling procedure are made

  11. Comparison between isotope dilution and activation analysis as a method for determining the macro content of mercury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soedyartomo; Sunoko, S.R.

    1975-01-01

    It is true that the mercury content in the environment should be measured accurately because of its toxicity even at levels of microgram order. The assessment of hazards due to environmental contamination with mercury is based on the results of the metal analysis in a number of different samples. Consequently, the study of the character of analytical methods used, i.e. their accuracy, precision, sensitivity, etc. is essential. A brief description on the microanalysis methods of mercury as given. The discussion of the results obtained from analysing some sludge and water by means of isotope dilution and destructive thermal neutron activation analysis is also presented. It is found that both methods are suitable for routine work. It can be concluded that the isotope dilution method has some advantages. It is more simple, more sensitive, more rapid, and has lower radiation hazard. (author)

  12. Actual Uranium Exploration and Mining Activities in Niger

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kache, Mamane

    2014-01-01

    Conclusion: Since the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident in 2011, many mining companies are not interested in uranium. It leads to the decrease in uranium spot price and the delay of IMOURAREN Project. Only, 47 exploration licenses for 12 mining companies are now valid in Niger.

  13. Recommending Learning Activities in Social Network Using Data Mining Algorithms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahnane, Lamia

    2017-01-01

    In this paper, we show how data mining algorithms (e.g. Apriori Algorithm (AP) and Collaborative Filtering (CF)) is useful in New Social Network (NSN-AP-CF). "NSN-AP-CF" processes the clusters based on different learning styles. Next, it analyzes the habits and the interests of the users through mining the frequent episodes by the…

  14. ORD Technical Outreach and Support Activities on Sustainable Mining Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardrock mining has played a significant role in the development of economies, consumer products and defense in the United States from the start of industrialization. Currently, the industry continues to lay a critical role in the development of our country. Mining waste which ...

  15. A novel understanding of land use characteristics caused by mining activities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Jianjun; Rao, Yongheng; Geng, Yuhuan

    2017-01-01

    An idea that which zones are the main disturbed areas in mining cities and what are the exact impacts in space concerns re-use and optimal allocation of land. Current research mostly concludes that mining activities impact land use greatly, but there is no definite spatial range of disturbance. T...

  16. IDENTIFYING RECENT SURFACE MINING ACTIVITIES USING A NORMALIZED DIFFERENCE VEGETATION INDEX (NDVI) CHANGE DETECTION METHOD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coal mining is a major resource extraction activity on the Appalachian Mountains. The increased size and frequency of a specific type of surface mining, known as mountain top removal-valley fill, has in recent years raised various environmental concerns. During mountainto...

  17. Responsible Development On Areva's Mining Activities - Report 2016

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2017-01-01

    Constituting the first link in the nuclear fuel cycle, New Areva's mining activities cover research, production and commercialization of uranium throughout the world. New Areva counts among the world's leading producers of uranium enjoying competitive production costs and with mines in operation in Canada, Kazakhstan and Niger. Committed to its role as a responsible mining company, New Areva conducts its mining activities in a manner that fully respects people and the environment, and contributes to the economic development of local regions and their populations. Thanks to a presence spanning five continents, they ensure the long-term supply to customers of uranium for electricity production while maintaining a responsible attitude towards people and the environment. It has a diverse portfolio of both active mines (Canada, Kazakhstan and Niger) and mines under development (Africa). This document is Areva's Mining Activities responsible Development report for 2016. Content: profile (Overview, Keys events, Worldwide presence, Governance and Organization, Uranium market); CSR approach (Top management statement, Risk management, Ethics and human rights, Voluntary initiatives, Materiality); Commitments (Health, occupational safety and radiation protection, Environment and Biodiversity, Social involvement, Commitment to employees, Mining closure, R and D and Innovation); Performance (CSR objectives, Key indicators, Reporting parameters); Case Studies; Annexes (GRI Index)

  18. Determination of mercury in human serum and packed blood cells by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Versieck, J.; Vanballenberghe, L.; Wittoek, A.; Vermeir, G.; Vandecasteele, C.

    1990-01-01

    A method is described for the determination of mercury in human blood serum and packed blood cells employing neutron activation analysis. Great attention was devoted to the collection and manipulation of the samples. The accuracy and precision of the method were tested by analyzing biological reference materials and by comparing the concentrations measured in a number of serum samples to those obtained by another, independent technique (cold vapor atomic absorption spectrometry) in the same samples. The article reports the levels measured in blood serum and packed blood cells samples from 15 adult volunteers, as well as the figures determined in a open-quotes second-generationclose quotes biological reference material (freeze-dried human serum), prepared and conditioned at the University of Ghent

  19. Determination by neutron activation analysis of loss of arsenic, antimony, bromine and mercury during lyophilization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carlson, M.; Litman, R.

    1978-01-01

    Neutron activation analysis has been used to monitor the loss of arsenic, as dimethylarsinic acid, (CH 3 ) 2 AsOOH, or as sodium arsenate (Na 2 HAsO 4 .7H 2 O), antimony (as potassium antimony, tartrate, KSbC 4 O 7 .1/2H 2 O) and bromine (as bromide ion) during lyophilization of acidified and neutral aqueous synthetic and environmental samples. Losses of Sb and As ranged from zero to 60%, while losses of bromine were constant (at 91%) in acidic solutions. The variable losses of As and Sb were due solely to the presence of and partial decomposition of the (CH 3 ) 2 AsOOH. Electrochemical oxidation of Br - to Br 2 is responsible for the high losses of bromine. In addition losses of mercury (as methylmercuric chloride) were 1O0% in both acidic and neutral aqueous synthetic samples during lyophilization. (author)

  20. The Determination of Manganese, Zinc and Mercury in Hair by Neutron Activation Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Busamongkol, Arporn [Chemistry Division, Office of Atomic Energy for Peace, Bangkok (Thailand)

    1999-07-01

    The concentration of Manganese, Zinc and Mercury in hair of 30 Bangkok's residents and 62 workers in dry cell battery plant are determined by Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis. After washing and grinding, the sample is separated into two portions, one to determine Mn, the other to determine Zn and Hg. The accuracy is evaluated by comparison with Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy method. The accuracy of this method are 0.46 and 0.74% for Mn and Zn, respectively. The precision are indicated by the relative standard deviation of 7.51, 4.32 and 6.49% for Mn, Zn and Hg, respectively. The average concentration of Mn, Zn and Hg in the first group are 1.87, 175.96 and 5.39 {mu}g/g, in the second group are 14.43, 236.38 and 13.55 {mu}g/g, respectively.

  1. Arsenic and mercury levels in human hairs and nails from gold ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Hair and nail samples obtained from inhabitants of Wassa West District, a major gold mining area in Ghana, were analysed for arsenic (As) and mercury (Hg) using instrumental neutron activation analysis. The samples were irradiated at a thermal neutron flux of 5 x 10P11 Pn cmP-2P sP-1P using the Ghana Research ...

  2. Increased mining activities in the eastern Democratic Republic of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Introduction: Household poverty and poor access to health and other social ... Business investment in the region offers real opportunities to ... Keywords: malnutrition; children under-five-years-old; mining; DRC; corporate social responsibility ...

  3. Characterization of Activated Carbon from Coal and Its Application as Adsorbent on Mine Acid Water Treatment

    OpenAIRE

    Siti Hardianti; Susila Arita Rachman; Harminuke E.H.

    2017-01-01

    Anthracite and Sub-bituminous as activated carbon raw material had been utilized especially in mining field as adsorbent of dangerous heavy metal compound resulted in mining activity. Carbon from coal was activated physically and chemically in various temperature and particle sizes. Characterization was carried out in order to determine the adsorbent specification produced hence can be used and applied accordingly. Proximate and ultimate analysis concluded anthracite has fixed carbon 88.91% w...

  4. Application of neutron activation analysis to the determination of total mercury and other elements of interest in soil and sediment samples from Serra do Navio and Vila Nova River Basin, Amapa, Brazil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goncalves, Cristina

    1997-01-01

    In this work it is presented a survey on total mercury determination by a radiochemical method in sediment and soil samples from two regions, in the state of Amapa: Serra do Navio (background area) and Vila Nova river basin (gold mining area). The method consisted in leaching of the irradiated samples with acqua regia in a Parr bomb, and heating in microwave oven, for one minute. Then the solvent extraction technique was applied, using bismuth diethyldithiocarbamate (Bi(DDC) 3 ) as extractant agent. The organic phase, containing 197 Hg and 203 Hg radioisotopes, was measured in a gamma spectrometer with hyper pure Ge detector. This method eliminated the interference of the 279.54 keV photopeak of 75 Se on 279.2 keV photopeak of 203 Hg, besides improving counting statistics of both Hg radioisotopes. The elements As, Ba, Br, Ce, Co, Cr, Cs, Eu, Fe, Hf, Ho, K, La, Lu, Mg, Mn, Na, Nd, Rb, Sb, Sc, Se, Sm, Ta, Tb, Th, Ti, U, V, W, Yb, Zn and Zr were also determined by the instrumental neutron activation analysis. Two irradiation series were carried out to quantify these elements in soil and sediment samples; a short term irradiation allowed to evaluate Mg, Mn, Na, Ti and V levels, and by long term irradiation, the other elements were determined. Precision and accuracy of radiochemical procedure were verified by means of analysis of the reference materials Buffalo River Sediment and Lake Sediment, for sediments and GXR-5, for soils. For the instrumental analysis, the reference materials Buffalo River Sediment, Soil 7, JB-1 and Oyster Tissue were used. The samples were also submitted to X ray diffraction, in Instituto de Geoscience-USP, to observe mercury behaviour with mineralogy. Aluminium concentration was determined by X ray fluorescence method, in the Department of Materials, IPEN/CNEN-SP, making possible enrichment factor calculation so that mercurial contamination in the gold mining area (Vila Nova river basin) could be evaluated. The mercury levels obtained in this

  5. ACTIVITIES TO CONTAIN MERCURY POLLUTION FROM ENTERING THE RIVER IRTYSH IN PAVLODAR, KAZAKHSTAN

    Science.gov (United States)

    This paper describes a research and implementation program to cost effectively contain mercury pollution from a former chlor-alkali plant at Pavlodar, Kazakhstan. It has been estimated that about 1300 tons of mercury were lost into the environment. The primary source of pollutio...

  6. Analysis of mercury and selenium in biological samples by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Catharino, Marilia Gabriela Miranda

    2002-01-01

    In the present work, hair samples from populations suspected of contamination by mercury, in the localities of Serra do Navio, Vila Nova and Tartarugalzinho, in the State of Amapa, were analyzed. Hair samples of children under odontopediatric treatment were also analyzed for mercury, in order to study the possibility of transfer of mercury from the dental amalgam and also to obtain data of hair mercury in a control population of children. Another step of the work was the development of a method for the determination of selenium, by using the short-lived radioisotope 77 mSe. After the certification of the method it was applied to the analysis of hair, nails and a vitamin supplement. A comparison was made with the results obtain ed by using the long-lived radioisotope of selenium, 75 Se. The results obtained for mercury in the hair samples of populations living in the State of Amapa have shown that the mercury concentrations in these populations are much higher than in the controls. As for the hair samples of children under treatment with mercury amalgam, no significant differences were found in the concentrations of mercury after the treatment. On the other hand, these data were important to obtain data for a control population of children. The results obtained by using the radioisotope 77 mSe showed that the method developed was suitable for the analyzed matrixes and the results were similar to the ones obtained by employing the usual AANI method, with the radioisotope 75 Se. (author)

  7. The influence of forestry activity on the structure of dissolved organic matter in lakes: Implications for mercury photoreactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Driscoll, N.J.; Siciliano, S.D.; Peak, D.; Carignan, R.; Lean, D.R.S.

    2006-01-01

    It is well known that dissolved organic matter (DOM) increases in lakes associated with forestry activity but characterization of the DOM structure is incomplete. Twenty-three lakes with a wide range of forestry activities located in central Quebec, Canada were sampled and analyzed for dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentration, DOC fluorescence, and ultra violet-visible (UV-VIS) absorption spectra. The results show that DOC increases (as does the associated DOC fluorescence) with increased logging (slope = 0.122, r 2 = 0.581, p 2 = 0.308, p -2 , r 2 = 0.331, p 13 C solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance ( 13 C NMR) analysis. XANES analysis of functional groups in the four concentrated samples shows that there are significant differences in reduced sulphur between the samples, however there was no clear relationship with forestry activity in the associated catchment. XRD data showed the presence of amorphous sulphide minerals associated with the DOM concentrate that may be important sites for mercury binding. The 13 C NMR spectra of these samples show that the percentage of carbon present in carboxylic functional groups increases with increasing logging. Such structures are important for binding photo-reducible mercury and their presence may limit mercury photo-reduction and volatilization. We propose a mechanism by which increased logging leads to increased carboxylic groups in DOM and thereby increased weak binding of photo-reducible mercury. These results, in part, explain the decrease in dissolved gaseous mercury (DGM) production rates with increased logging found in our previous work

  8. Determination of mercury and selenium in biological materials by neutron activation analysis method

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Catharino, Marilia G.M.; Vasconcellos, Marina B.A.; Moreira, Edson G.; Cipriano, Roseli; Saiki, Mitiko

    2000-01-01

    Mercury presents a great number of applications, however, many mercury compounds are highly toxic and may cause diseases or even death. Other element of interest is selenium, as some studies have shown that it may reduce the toxic effects of mercury and other toxic elements, due to its ability to bind to these elements. In this work the mercury concentration in the 'Spiked Human Hair' IAEA-085 and 'Unspiked Human Hair' IAEA-086 certified reference materials, in hair samples of children under dental treatment and in hair samples of an Amazon Region population, subject to mercurial contamination was determined. Selenium determination was done using 77m Se and 75 Se radioisotopes. The selenium concentration was determined also in the (IAEA-085, IAEA-086, 'Dogfish Liver' DOLT-1 and 'Dogfish Muscle' DORM-1) certified reference materials, vitamin supplement and nail clipping samples. (author)

  9. Five Hundred Years of Mercury Exposure and Adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombardi, Guido; Lanzirotti, Antonio; Qualls, Clifford; Socola, Francisco; Ali, Abdul-Mehdi; Appenzeller, Otto

    2012-01-01

    Mercury is added to the biosphere by anthropogenic activities raising the question of whether changes in the human chromatin, induced by mercury, in a parental generation could allow adaptation of their descendants to mercury. We review the history of Andean mining since pre-Hispanic times in Huancavelica, Peru. Despite the persistent degradation of the biosphere today, no overt signs of mercury toxicity could be discerned in present day inhabitants. However, mercury is especially toxic to the autonomic nervous system (ANS). We, therefore, tested ANS function and biologic rhythms, under the control of the ANS, in 5 Huancavelicans and examined the metal content in their hair. Mercury levels varied from none to 1.014 ppm, significantly less than accepted standards. This was confirmed by microfocused synchrotron X-ray fluorescence analysis. Biologic rhythms were abnormal and hair growth rate per year, also under ANS control, was reduced (P Peru. This would generally benefit survival in the Anthropocene, the man-made world, we now live in. PMID:22910643

  10. Effects of inorganic mercury on the respiration and the swimming activity of shrimp larvae, Pandalus borealis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    St-Amand, L.; Gagnon, R.; Packard, T.T.; Savenkoff, C.

    1999-01-01

    In order to test the sensitivity of respiration (physiological and potential) to mercury (Hg) contamination, larval shrimp Pandalus borealis were exposed to inorganic Hg (0-160 ppb) for 27 h in the laboratory. Oxygen consumption rates (RO 2 ), potential respiration (determined by respiratory electron transfer system activity, ETSA), protein content, and swimming activity for zoeae III and zoeae V stages were measured. For both zoeae stages, ETSA and protein content remained constant after 27 h exposure to 160 ppb Hg whereas RO 2 and swimming activity decreased. This study revealed the impact of different Hg levels and different exposure times on RO 2 of shrimp larvae. After 10 h exposure to 160 ppb Hg, the RO 2 decreased by 43 and 49% in zoeae III and zoeae V stages, respectively. Exposure time of 27 h to 80 ppb Hg and higher, induced paralysis in nearly 100% larvae. Surprisingly, the paralysed larvae displayed almost 50% of the control's RO 2 . The results showed that Hg disturbs a part of the respiration process without modifying the maximum activity of the enzymes involved in the ETSA assay. Therefore, the ETSA assay can not be used as a sublethal bioanalytic probe to detect Hg in short-term exposures. The decline of the RO 2 /ETSA ratios reported here, indicates an inability of contaminated larvae to adapt their metabolism to physiological stress caused by Hg. (Copyright (c) 1999 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.)

  11. Hair Mercury Negatively Correlates with Calcium Pump Activity in Human Term Newborns and Their Mothers at Delivery

    OpenAIRE

    Huel, Guy; Sahuquillo, Josiane; Debotte, Ginette; Oury, Jean-François; Takser, Larissa

    2007-01-01

    Background Calcium homeostasis is a known target of several environmental toxicants including lead and mercury. Objective Our goal was to determine the relationship between Hg exposure and erythrocyte Ca pump activity in women at delivery and in their newborns. Methods We determined total Hg as well as Pb concentrations in 81 hair and blood samples obtained at delivery. Basal and calmodulin-stimulated Ca pump activity was measured in red blood cells from cord blood and maternal erythrocyte pl...

  12. Study on the mercury evolution in a laboratory multi specific aquatic system by using instrumental neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bubach, Debora; Guevara, Sergio Ribeiro; Arribere, Maria A.; Pechen de d'Angelo, Ana; Ferrari, Ana; Venturino, Andres

    1999-01-01

    A preliminary study on the evolution of mercury in the organisms of a laboratory multi specific aquatic system was performed using Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA). Some of the possible effects of mercury toxicity were monitored by analyzing early biochemical indicators. The system consisted of an aquarium with bed sediments, aquatic macrophytes (Myriophyllum sp.), bivalves (Diplodom sp.) and exotic fish, simulating a long term contamination situation of unknown causes, where the sediments are the contaminant reservoir. Samples of the abiotic components of the system were analyzed at the beginning of the experiment, and again when the organisms were sampled. Fish carcass, kidney and liver samples, bivalve hepatopancreas, and whole macrophytes were extracted ana analyzed for mercury and other elements by INAA at the beginning of the experiment, and after 48 and 96 hours. Since some crustal elements such as Sc and La were detected in the hepatopancreas and macrophyte samples, enrichment factors for mercury, with respect to the <63 μm sediment fraction, were computed to discriminate the metabolized Hg content from that associated to the particulate. The hepatopancreas index, some indicators of oxidative stress (γ-Glutamyl-cysteinyl-glycine content and lipid peroxidation) and brain acetilcolinesterasa were measured as early indicators of toxicity. (author)

  13. Mercury concentration on Enhalus acoroides and Thalassia hemprichii at Seribu Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suratno; Irawan, Andri

    2018-02-01

    Mercury is a toxic heavy metal element that can damage embryo development. Although this element is highly toxic, some human activities such as mining and industries are still using it. The uncontrolled usage of this element leads to pollution problem in the environment, which includes the seagrass ecosystem in the coastal area of Seribu Islands. For that, to gather more information about mercury pollution in the seagrass beds of these islands, the concentration of mercury (Hg) was measured in sediment, rhizomes, roots and leaves of two species of seagrass (Enhalus acoroides and Thalassia hemprichii) from Lancang Island, Pari Island and Panggang Island at Seribu Islands, Indonesia in April-May 2017. The highest concentration of mercury was found in sediment on Lancang Island. The concentration of mercury was significantly higher on leaves compare to on roots or rhizomes in E. acoroides on Lancang Island and Panggang Island. T. hemprichii accumulate mercury higher than E. acoroides on Lancang Island. Overall, mercury accumulation on both species ranges at 7.12 - 87.41 ug/kg dw and this shows that they have the potential as bio-indicator of mercury bio accumulation.

  14. Indoor metallic pollution related to mining activity in the Bolivian Altiplano.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontúrbel, Francisco E; Barbieri, Enio; Herbas, Cristian; Barbieri, Flavia L; Gardon, Jacques

    2011-10-01

    The environmental pollution associated with mining and metallurgical activities reaches its greatest extent in several Andean cities and villages. Many locations in this area have accumulated through centuries a large amount of mining wastes, often disregarding the magnitude of this situation. However, in these naturally mineralized regions, there is little information available stating the exact role of mining and metallurgical industries in urban pollution. In this study, we demonstrated that the various metallic elements present in indoor dust (As, Cd, Cu, Pb, Sb, Sn, Zn) had a common origin and this contamination was increased by the proximity to the mines. Lead dust concentration was found at concerning levels for public health. In addition, wrong behaviors such as carrying mining workwear home contributed to this indoor dust pollution. Consequently, the constant exposure of the population could represent a potential health hazard for vulnerable groups, especially children. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Survey of active and inactive mines for possible use as in situ test facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1976-09-01

    A survey of active and inactive mines which might be useful for radioactive waste storage in situ test experiments was conducted. It was performed for Union Carbide Corporation, Nuclear Division, Office of Waste Isolation. The report covers available information gathered from literature, U.S. Bureau of Mines, the Mining Enforcement and Safety Agency, and a limited number of personal contacts with constructors or operators of facilities. This survey is preliminary in nature and the objective is to develop potential candidate facilities for in situ experiments which warrant further investigation. Included are descriptions of 244 facilities, with all the data about each one which was available within the time restraint of the study. These facility descriptions are additionally indexed by depth of mine, nature of the country rock, mineral mined, and type of entry. A total of 14 inactive mines and 34 active mines has been selected as those most worthy of further investigation for possible service as nuclear waste isolation test facilities. This investigation, being preliminary and having been performed in a very short time period, must be qualified, and the description of the qualification is presented in the body of this report. Qualifications deal primarily with the hazard of having omitted facilities and having incomplete data in some instances. Results indicate sedimentary rock mines of minerals of evaporite origin as a first ranking of preference for in situ testing, followed by other sedimentary rocks and then by mines producing minerals from any type rock where the mine is above the local water table. These are general rules and of course there can be exceptions to them

  16. Potential for exposure to radon in non-uranium mines and other activities in the UK

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dixon, D.W.; Gooding, T.D.

    1996-01-01

    Radon levels in UK mines have been investigated in several surveys over the last decade and have shown that greatest potential for exposure in in mines other than coal mines ('non-coal mines' for brevity). These and associated studies have also shown that there is is potential for significant exposure in mines even after mineral extraction has ceased, for example, during their use for secondary commercial purposes, such as tourism of storage. Even after all work has been abandoned, mines can be a focus for some leisure activities such as industrial archaeology or mineral collecting. A key element of protection for employees and members of the public who enter mines is a programme of area monitoring. The diverse range of conditions from continuous occupancy and forces ventilation, to sporadic entry into naturally ventilated systems, places stringent demands on monitoring programmes and methods of dose estimation. In particular, the use of intermittent ventilation can have unexpected and adverse effects on radon levels and the implications of such phenomena for dose limitation and monitoring programmes are considered for the various stages in the life of a mine. (author). 13 refs, 4 figs, 1 tab

  17. Environmental activities in uranium mining and milling. A Joint NEA/IAEA report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    This report on 'Environmental Activities in Uranium Mining and Milling' presents an overview of environmental activities related to uranium production. The profile of activities and concerns are based on survey responses from 29 countries and a review of relevant activities of the International Atomic Energy Agency and the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency. It also provides an overview of the reported interests of specialists working in the field, including environmental impact assessment, emissions to air and water, work environment, radiation safety, waste handling and disposal, mine and mill decommissioning and site restoration, and the regulation of these activities. The report reflects the increasing awareness in all countries of the need for environmental protection. For several years large programmes have been underway in several countries to clean up wastes from closed mines and mills. Many of these sites, particularly the older ones, were brought into production, operated and closed when little was known about environmental effects. At the time, little concern was given to the resulting environmental impacts. Currently, planning for and conducting uranium mine closure and mill decommissioning, together with site clean-up and restoration, are of almost universal concern. Mine closure and mill decommissioning activities have been or are being conducted in most of the countries with a history of uranium production. Information about several mine closures and mill decommissioning projects is included in this report

  18. Mercury-Induced Externalization of Phosphatidylserine and Caspase 3 Activation in Human Liver Carcinoma (HepG2 Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul B. Tchounwou

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Apoptosis arises from the active initiation and propagation of a series of highly orchestrated specific biochemical events leading to the demise of the cell. It is a normal physiological process, which occurs during embryonic development as well as in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis. Diverse groups of molecules are involved in the apoptosis pathway and it functions as a mechanism to eliminate unwanted or irreparably damaged cells. However, inappropriate induction of apoptosis by environmental agents has broad ranging pathologic implications and has been associated with several diseases including cancer. The toxicity of several heavy metals such as mercury has been attributed to their high affinity to sulfhydryl groups of proteins and enzymes, and their ability to disrupt cell cycle progression and/or apoptosis in various tissues. The aim of this study was to assess the potential for mercury to induce early and late-stage apoptosis in human liver carcinoma (HepG2 cells. The Annexin-V and Caspase 3 assays were performed by flow cytometric analysis to determine the extent of phosphatidylserine externalization and Caspase 3 activation in mercury-treated HepG2 cells. Cells were exposed to mercury for 10 and 48 hours respectively at doses of 0, 1, 2, and 3 μg/mL based on previous cytotoxicity results in our laboratory indicating an LD50 of 3.5 ± 0.6 μg/mL for mercury in HepG2 cells. The study data indicated a dose response relationship between mercury exposure and the degree of early and late-stage apoptosis in HepG2 cells. The percentages of cells undergoing early apoptosis were 0.03 ± 0.03%, 5.19 ± 0.04%, 6.36 ± 0.04%, and 8.84 ± 0.02% for 0, 1, 2, and 3 μg/mL of mercury respectively, indicating a gradual increase in apoptotic cells with increasing doses of mercury. The percentages of Caspase 3 positive cells undergoing late apoptosis were 3.58 ± 0.03%, 17.06 ± 0

  19. Determination of mercury in human tissues after acute poisoning by neutron activation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rakovic, M.; Glagolicova, A.; Prouza, Z.; Gregora, Z.

    1976-01-01

    The non-destructive determination of mercury in human tissues after acute poisoning based on the use of a γ-ray spectometer with a Ge(Li) semiconductor detector is described. Samples were irradiated at a thermal neutron flux density of about 10 12 n cm -2 s -1 for 4 hrs. From the results of the preliminary experiments the following conclusions have been drawn. The mercury losses should be negligible when drying of the biological samples at 80 deg C. To irradiate samples for mercury determination is preferable in silica tubes than in polyethylene ones. (T.I.)

  20. Hydrochemical evaluation of the influences of mining activities on river water chemistry in central northern Mongolia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batsaikhan, Bayartungalag; Kwon, Jang-Soon; Kim, Kyoung-Ho; Lee, Young-Joon; Lee, Jeong-Ho; Badarch, Mendbayar; Yun, Seong-Taek

    2017-01-01

    Although metallic mineral resources are most important in the economy of Mongolia, mining activities with improper management may result in the pollution of stream waters, posing a threat to aquatic ecosystems and humans. In this study, aiming to evaluate potential impacts of metallic mining activities on the quality of a transboundary river (Selenge) in central northern Mongolia, we performed hydrochemical investigations of rivers (Tuul, Khangal, Orkhon, Haraa, and Selenge). Hydrochemical analysis of river waters indicates that, while major dissolved ions originate from natural weathering (especially, dissolution of carbonate minerals) within watersheds, they are also influenced by mining activities. The water quality problem arising from very high turbidity is one of the major environmental concerns and is caused by suspended particles (mainly, sediment and soil particles) from diverse erosion processes, including erosion of river banks along the meandering river system, erosion of soils owing to overgrazing by livestock, and erosion by human activities, such as mining and agriculture. In particular, after passing through the Zaamar gold mining area, due to the disturbance of sediments and soils by placer gold mining, the Tuul River water becomes very turbid (up to 742 Nephelometric Turbidity Unit (NTU)). The Zaamar area is also the contamination source of the Tuul and Orkhon rivers by Al, Fe, and Mn, especially during the mining season. The hydrochemistry of the Khangal River is influenced by heavy metal (especially, Mn, Al, Cd, and As)-loaded mine drainage that originates from a huge tailing dam of the Erdenet porphyry Cu-Mo mine, as evidenced by δ 34 S values of dissolved sulfate (0.2 to 3.8 ‰). These two contaminated rivers (Tuul and Khangal) merge into the Orkhon River that flows to the Selenge River near the boundary between Mongolia and Russia and then eventually flows into Lake Baikal. Because water quality problems due to mining can be critical

  1. Digital database of mining-related features at selected historic and active phosphate mines, Bannock, Bear Lake, Bingham, and Caribou counties, Idaho

    Science.gov (United States)

    Causey, J. Douglas; Moyle, Phillip R.

    2001-01-01

    This report provides a description of data and processes used to produce a spatial database that delineates mining-related features in areas of historic and active phosphate mining in the core of the southeastern Idaho phosphate resource area. The data have varying degrees of accuracy and attribution detail. Classification of areas by type of mining-related activity at active mines is generally detailed; however, the spatial coverage does not differentiate mining-related surface disturbance features at many of the closed or inactive mines. Nineteen phosphate mine sites are included in the study. A total of 5,728 hc (14,154 ac), or more than 57 km2 (22 mi2), of phosphate mining-related surface disturbance are documented in the spatial coverage of the core of the southeast Idaho phosphate resource area. The study includes 4 active phosphate mines—Dry Valley, Enoch Valley, Rasmussen Ridge, and Smoky Canyon—and 15 historic phosphate mines—Ballard, Champ, Conda, Diamond Gulch, Gay, Georgetown Canyon, Henry, Home Canyon, Lanes Creek, Maybe Canyon, Mountain Fuel, Trail Canyon, Rattlesnake Canyon, Waterloo, and Wooley Valley. Spatial data on the inactive historic mines is relatively up-to-date; however, spatially described areas for active mines are based on digital maps prepared in early 1999. The inactive Gay mine has the largest total area of disturbance: 1,917 hc (4,736 ac) or about 19 km2 (7.4 mi2). It encompasses over three times the disturbance area of the next largest mine, the Conda mine with 607 hc (1,504 ac), and it is nearly four times the area of the Smoky Canyon mine, the largest of the active mines with 497 hc (1,228 ac). The wide range of phosphate mining-related surface disturbance features (approximately 80) were reduced to 13 types or features used in this study—adit and pit, backfilled mine pit, facilities, mine pit, ore stockpile, railroad, road, sediment catchment, tailings or tailings pond, topsoil stockpile, water reservoir, and disturbed

  2. Modeling Mercury in Proteins

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, Jeremy C [ORNL; Parks, Jerry M [ORNL

    2016-01-01

    Mercury (Hg) is a naturally occurring element that is released into the biosphere both by natural processes and anthropogenic activities. Although its reduced, elemental form Hg(0) is relatively non-toxic, other forms such as Hg2+ and, in particular, its methylated form, methylmercury, are toxic, with deleterious effects on both ecosystems and humans. Microorganisms play important roles in the transformation of mercury in the environment. Inorganic Hg2+ can be methylated by certain bacteria and archaea to form methylmercury. Conversely, bacteria also demethylate methylmercury and reduce Hg2+ to relatively inert Hg(0). Transformations and toxicity occur as a result of mercury interacting with various proteins. Clearly, then, understanding the toxic effects of mercury and its cycling in the environment requires characterization of these interactions. Computational approaches are ideally suited to studies of mercury in proteins because they can provide a detailed picture and circumvent issues associated with toxicity. Here we describe computational methods for investigating and characterizing how mercury binds to proteins, how inter- and intra-protein transfer of mercury is orchestrated in biological systems, and how chemical reactions in proteins transform the metal. We describe quantum chemical analyses of aqueous Hg(II), which reveal critical factors that determine ligand binding propensities. We then provide a perspective on how we used chemical reasoning to discover how microorganisms methylate mercury. We also highlight our combined computational and experimental studies of the proteins and enzymes of the mer operon, a suite of genes that confers mercury resistance in many bacteria. Lastly, we place work on mercury in proteins in the context of what is needed for a comprehensive multi-scale model of environmental mercury cycling.

  3. Measurement of mercury isotopic ratio in stone meteorites by neutron activation analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thakur, A.N.

    1997-01-01

    196 Hg and 202 Hg isotopes have been measured by neutron activation analysis in samples of twelve stone meteorites. Hg is extracted from an irradiated sample by stepwise heating. The mercury concentrations vary from 0.07 to 33 ppm. While most of the samples give 196 Hg/ 202 Hg ratios similar to terrestrial value within error limits, in some cases large anomalies are observed. A number of control experiments have been devised, that show the absence of experimental artifacts, during sample preparation, neutron irradiation, chemical separation and counting stages. Several anomalous and normal Hg distillate have been re-irradiated as Hg-diethyl-dithio-carbamate complex to eliminate the influence of neutron self shielding and interfering reactions from matrix elements. The isotopic ratio patterns persist in the distillates too proving that any artifacts during meteorite irradiation and measurement are essentially absent. Both positive and negative anomalies are observed: however, the negative anomalies are much more frequent and abundant. In an extreme case of fine grained magnetic particles of Ambapur Nagla the 196 Hg is apparently absent in the Hg released at 100 deg C. A 2σ 196 Hg/ 202 Hg value is only 6% relative to the monitor. This experiment shows the robustness of neutron activation analysis and suggest some constrains on the formation history of stone meteorites. (author)

  4. Sensitivity improvements, in the determination of mercury in biological tissues by neutron activation analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cornett, C R; Samudralwar, D L; Ehmann, W D [Kentucky Univ., Lexington, KY (United States). Dept. of Chemistry; Markesbery, W R [Kentucky Univ., Lexington, KY (United States)

    1995-08-01

    The possible association of dental amalgam surface exposure, brain mercury (Hg) levels, and pathological markers of Alzheimer`s disease (AD) in the brain is the subject of an on-going study in our laboratory. Two radiochemical neutron activation analysis methods and the use of instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) with Compton suppression spectrometry have been evaluated for improving our INAA Hg detection limit (2.8{+-}0.6 ng/g, wet-weight basis) in human tissue. Large numbers of samples dictated the use of a purely instrumental method or rapid, simple radiochemical separations. Human brain tissues and NIST biological standards were analyzed using a precipitation of Hg{sub 2}Cl{sub 2}, a solvent extraction utilizing sodium diethyldithiocarbomate, conventional INAA, and INAA with Compton suppression. The radiochemical precipitation of Hg{sub 2}Cl{sub 2} proved to be the most useful method for use in our study because it provided a simultaneous, quantitative determination of silver (Ag) and a Hg detection limit in brain tissue of 1.6{+-}0.1 ng/g (wet-weight basis). (author). 12 refs., 2 tabs.

  5. Exchange pattern of gaseous elemental mercury in an active urban landfill facility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Hang Thi; Kim, Ki-Hyun; Kim, Min-Young; Shon, Zang-Ho

    2008-01-01

    The environmental behavior of gaseous elemental mercury (Hg) in the ambient air was investigated from the center of a municipal landfill site (area approximately 0.6km(2)) located in Dae Gu, Korea in the winter of 2004. In order to provide insight on the Hg exchange processes in strong source areas, we continuously analyzed Hg concentration gradients developed across two heights between 1m and 5m over soil surfaces at hourly intervals. The results displayed Hg concentrations in the lower and upper levels in the range of 1.46-13.1ngm(-3) (3.33+/-1.29ngm(-3): N=139) and 1.20-13.7ngm(-3) (3.27+/-1.23ngm(-3): N=139), respectively. The results of our analysis, when divided separately into emission and dry deposition, showed that emission of Hg was fairly dominant in frequency (up to 58%) over dry deposition. By multiplying our Hg gradient data with the K-values predicted indirectly from the results of previous studies, the emission and deposition fluxes of Hg were estimated as 39.0+/-43.3ngm(-2)h(-1) (N=80) and -60.0+/-80.2ngm(-2)h(-1) (N=59), respectively. Although the magnitudes of exchange were moderately lower than previously investigated anthropogenic sources, the overall results of this study suggest that an active landfill site can act as an important source of Hg in an urban environment along with other man-made activities.

  6. Contribution of Mining Activities and Development in Africa: Private ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Reports. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and development in Africa : redefining the roles and responsibilities of public and private actors in the mining sector. Download PDF. Reports. Des caravanes juridiques à la relecture du Code minier : capitalisation des expériences en matière de développement des capacités ...

  7. Resilience of benthic deep-sea fauna to mining activities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gollner, S.; Kaiser, S.; Menzel, L.; Jones, D.O.B.; Brown, A.; Mestre, N.C.; Van Oevelen, D.; Menot, L.; Colaço, A.; Canals, M.; Cuvelier, D.; Durden, J.M.; Gebruk, A.; Egho, G.A.; Haeckel, M.; Marcon, Y.; Mevenkamp, L.; Morato, T.; Pham, C.K.; Purser, A.; Sanchez-Vidal, A.; Vanreusel, A.; Vink, A.; Martinez Arbizu, P.

    2017-01-01

    With increasing demand for mineral resources, extraction of polymetallic sulphides at hydrothermal vents, cobalt-rich ferromanganese crusts at seamounts, and polymetallic nodules on abyssal plains may be imminent. Here, we shortly introduce ecosystem characteristics of mining areas, report on recent

  8. Increased mining activities in the eastern Democratic Republic of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2009-10-20

    Oct 20, 2009 ... to the rest of sub-Saharan Africa, at 38%.9 The relative return to ... mining companies to invest in the eastern provinces of the country, presenting an opportunity to improve the nutritional and overall health status of children in the region. ... services for employees and their beneficiaries, potable water via.

  9. Mercury and Your Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... the Risk of Exposure to Mercury Learn About Mercury What is Mercury What is Metallic mercury? Toxicological Profile ToxFAQs Mercury Resources CDC’s National Biomonitoring Program Factsheet on Mercury ...

  10. Determination of mercury in urine through Neutron activation analysis in dentists, as a mea