Impact of shallowly deposited ore-bearing dolomites on local soil pollution aureoles of As, Cd, Pb, and Zn in an old mining areaReport as inadecuate

Impact of shallowly deposited ore-bearing dolomites on local soil pollution aureoles of As, Cd, Pb, and Zn in an old mining area - Download this document for free, or read online. Document in PDF available to download.

Journal of Soils and Sediments

, Volume 12, Issue 9, pp 1389–1395

First Online: 25 July 2012Received: 15 March 2012Accepted: 06 July 2012


PurposeThe study area, located in Upper Silesian Industrial Region, was rich in significant amounts of ores that were classified of Mississippi Valley type. Being these ores especially rich in Pb and Zn, an intense development of mining and ore extraction industry was verified in this area. The goal of this study was to investigate how local pollution aureoles of As, Cd, Pb, and Zn were influenced by the presence of shallowly deposited ore-bearing dolomites.

Materials and methodsVery extensive sampling campaign was carried out, and over 1,000 samples were collected in the area of about 150 km. Local aureoles of investigated metals were calculated for two soil layers. The first one covered the part of soil core from the soil surface to the depth of 20 cm and the second one from the depth of 40 cm to the depth of 60 cm. All spatial distributions of particular metals in soil were calculated by means of ordinary kriging using free softwares QGIS and SAGA.

Results and discussionMaximum concentrations of Pb and Zn in soil in study area were very high, reaching over 24,000 and 77,000 mg-kg, respectively. Maximum concentrations of As and Cd were also very high, reaching about 1,000 mg-kg. Those maximum values were observed in the direct vicinity of the Bolesław mine and its mine dumps. Almost all local aureoles were located within the range of ore-bearing dolomites. It was especially visible for Pb and Zn, minerals very common in ore deposits. Otherwise, local aureoles of As and Cd were more related with the vicinity of mines and other pollution sources, being more associated to the anthropogenic pollution than to the presence of ore-bearing dolomites.

ConclusionsThe aureoles of Pb and Zn, and in moderate degree of As, were associated with a mineral composition of ores. Differently, the location, the shape, and spatial pattern of Cd aureoles suggest that they were mostly influenced by anthropogenic pollution. Anthropogenic factors were dominating over the lithogenic ones and masking the influence of the shallowly deposited ores.

KeywordsAs Cd, Pb, and Zn in soil Mining area Ore-rich dolomites Pb–Zn ores Pollution aureoles Responsible editor: Bernd Markert

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Author: Piotr Fabijańczyk - Jarosław Zawadzki


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