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Bird G.,3dB Research | Brewer P.A.,3dB Research | Macklin M.G.,3dB Research | Nikolova M.,Bulgarian Academy of Science | And 3 more authors.
Environmental Pollution | Year: 2010

In this study Pb isotope signatures were used to identify the provenance of contaminant metals and establish patterns of downstream sediment dispersal within the River Maritsa catchment, which is impacted by the mining of polymetallic ores. A two-fold modelling approach was undertaken to quantify sediment-associated metal delivery to the Maritsa catchment; employing binary mixing models in tributary systems and a composite fingerprinting and mixing model approach in the wider Maritsa catchment. Composite fingerprints were determined using Pb isotopic and multi-element geochemical data to characterize sediments delivered from tributary catchments. Application of a mixing model allowed a quantification of the percentage contribution of tributary catchments to the sediment load of the River Maritsa. Sediment delivery from tributaries directly affected by mining activity contributes 42-63% to the sediment load of the River Maritsa, with best-fit regression relationships indicating that sediments originating from mining-affected tributaries are being dispersed over 200 km downstream. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Sames B.,University of Vienna | Sames B.,Free University of Berlin | Whatley R.,3dB Research | Schudack M.E.,Free University of Berlin
Journal of Micropalaeontology | Year: 2010

The genus Praecypridea gen. nov. (Cypridoidea, Family Cyprideidae Martin, 1940) is described and thus far comprises four species: the type species Praecypridea acuticyatha (Schudack, 1998) comb. nov., Praecypridea postelongata (Oertli, 1957) comb, nov., Praecypridea suprajurassica (Mojon, Haddoumi & Charriére, 2009) comb. nov. and Praecypridea acuta (Moos, 1959 in Wicher, 1959) comb, nov. Representatives of the new genus have been described from the Middle to Late Jurassic of Europe, North America and Africa and the Early Cretaceous of South America, with other presumed representatives also occurring in the Early Cretaceous. Species of Praecypridea are considered to represent members of the ancestral lineage of the extinct genus Cypridea Bosquet, representatives of which flourished in non-marine habitats of latest Jurassic to Early Cretaceous age and account for the first period of abundance of the non-marine Cypridoidea. © 2010 The Micropalaeontological Society.

Kay D.,3dB Research | Crowther J.,University of Wales | Chadwick D.,North Wyke | Stapleton C.M.,3dB Research | Wyer M.D.,3dB Research
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2010

The European Union Water Framework Directive requires that Management Plans are developed for individual River Basin Districts. From the point of view of faecal indicator organisms (FIOs), there is a critical need for screening tools that can provide a rapid assessment of the likely FIO concentrations and fluxes within catchments under base- and high-flow conditions, and of the balance ('source apportionment') between agriculture- and sewage-derived sources. Accordingly, the present paper reports on: (1) the development of preliminary generic models, using water quality and land cover data from previous UK catchment studies for assessing FIO concentrations, fluxes and source apportionment within catchments during the summer bathing season; (2) the calibration of national land use data, against data previously used in the models; and (3) provisional FIO concentration and source-apportionment assessments for England and Wales. The models clearly highlighted the crucial importance of high-flow conditions for the flux of FIOs within catchments. At high flow, improved grassland (and associated livestock) was the key FIO source; FIO loadings derived from catchments with high proportions of improved grassland were shown to be as high as from urbanised catchments; and in many rural catchments, especially in NW and SW England and Wales, which are important areas of lowland livestock (especially dairy) farming, ≥ 40% of FIOs was assessed to be derived from agricultural sources. In contrast, under base-flow conditions, when there was little or no runoff from agricultural land, urban (i.e. sewerage-related) sources were assessed to dominate, and even in rural areas the majority of FIOs were attributed to urban sources. The results of the study demonstrate the potential of this type of approach, particularly in light of climate change and the likelihood of more high-flow events, in underpinning informed policy development and prioritisation of investment. © 2009 Elsevier B.V.

Brewer P.A.,3dB Research | Bird G.,Bangor University | Macklin M.G.,Massey University
Applied Geochemistry | Year: 2015

Mitrovica, northern Kosovo, is the site of some of the highest Pb concentrations reported in human populations; exemplified by Pb concentrations in scalp hair of up to 130μgg-1 and widely-publicized of Pb-related ill-health and mortality amongst internally displaced populations. High human Pb burdens are accompanied by elevated concentrations of potentially harmful elements (PHEs) in soils and house dust within the city, which has a long history of mining and metallurgy. In this study enrichment-levels for PHEs in soils are quantified and compared to environmental quality guidelines and a statistically-derived estimation of background concentration. In addition, Pb isotopes (207Pb/206Pb, 208Pb/206Pb) are used to characterise the isotopic signatures of potential point sources of Pb and a mixing model employed to quantify the contribution of sources to Pb present in soils, house dust, and the scalp hair of children and young people. Pb isotopic evidence suggests that Pb in surface soils and house-dust is predominantly sourced from historical deposition of Pb-containing aerosols from metal smelting, with lower contributions from wind-blown dispersal of metalliferous waste. Pb present in scalp hair is interpreted as the result of non-occupational exposure and the ingestion and/or inhalation of Pb-enriched surface soil and house dust. This study represents one of the very few instances where this type of geochemical tracing technique has been successfully applied to definitively identify the source of Pb present within biological samples. The results of this study are of particular relevance to environmental management and highlight the human health risk posed by the legacy of now inactive mining and metallurgy in addition to the challenge posed in mitigating the risk posed by diffuse soil pollution. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Ballent S.C.,National University of La Plata | Whatley R.,3dB Research
Revue de Paleobiologie | Year: 2012

The principal area for the recovery of Argentinean Jurassic marine Ostracoda is the Neuquén Basin, a large feature that spans the provinces of Neuquén, La Pampa, Río Negro and Mendoza. The Jurassic succession is very complete but not all is marine, some being continental clastic, evaporitic and volcanic in origin. At some levels, ostracods are very diverse and abundant, while other levels demonstrate low diversity but very high abundance. Generally, there is an increase in diversity with time but this is not steady and there are several reversions to low diversity. Recent works in West Australia and offshore western Australia, in certain Madagascan basins and in Kutch and Rajasthan in India, together with detailed synopses and analysis of faunas in these localities, in Europe and, importantly in Argentina, allow a better understanding of the principal components of the Neuquén faunas. The bi-hemispherical nature of important elements of the fauna is very clear, with certain key species being known for example, from the famous Mochras borehole in North Wales and from Neuquén, and other localities in between (Oligocythereis? mochrasensis). Other taxa, important in the local scheme of things are endemic to the Neuquén Basin; still other Argentinian taxa exhibit the third component of the faunas, those with gondwanine connections. The number of genera and species occurring in the basin and also, in Africa, Australia, Madagascar and India is impressive and all these are clearly indicated in the paper. Lastly, a new dimension is revealed by comparing the stratigraphical occurrence of certain of the more pandemic species. A number have their earliest occurrences in Neuquén, suggesting its importance as a locus of evolution from which species migrated out to other parts of the globe.

PubMed | 3dB Research and Station Road
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Nutrients | Year: 2015

This is a systematic review of existing data on dietary selenium (Se) intake and status for various population groups in Europe (including the United Kingdom (UK)) and the Middle East. It includes English language systematic reviews, meta-analyses, randomised controlled trials, cohort studies, cross-sectional and case-control studies obtained through PUBMED searches from January, 2002, to November, 2014, for European data and from 1990 to November 2014, for Middle Eastern data. Reports were selected if they included data on Se intake and status. The search identified 19 European/UK studies and 15 investigations in the Middle East that reported Se intake and Se concentration in water and/or food and 48 European/UK studies and 44 investigations in the Middle East reporting Se status. Suboptimal Se status was reported to be widespread throughout Europe, the UK and the Middle East, and these results agreed with previous reports highlighting the problem. Eastern European countries had lower Se intake than Western European countries. Middle Eastern studies provided varying results, possibly due to varying food habits and imports in different regions and within differing socioeconomic groups. In conclusion, Se intake and status is suboptimal in European and Middle Eastern countries, with less consistency in the Middle East.

PubMed | 3dB Research
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Environmental geochemistry and health | Year: 2013

Analytical and sampling methods for a reconnaissance survey of river waters in former metal mining areas of Wales, UK, are considered. A semi-quantitative mode of analysis with a single internal standard, possible by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) is compared with more conventional quantitative ICP-MS methods using external calibration from aqueous standards. Semi-quantitative analysis can be much quicker than a more rigorous quantitative approach and gives values which agree with fully quantitative data to within 30%, indeed, agreement is often much better than this. A comparison of samples filtered and acidified in the field with untreated samples is also presented. This shows that in most cases it is unnecessary to filter and acidify samples if the storage time before analysis is short (in this case typically less than four days).

PubMed | 3dB Research
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Environmental geochemistry and health | Year: 2013

Routine monitoring of the public water supply in Aberystwyth revealed high levels of aluminium during November 1989. These levels were twelve times the EEC recommended level and three times the maximum permitted level. While the reservoirs supplying the region and the streams draining their upland peaty catchment areas generally contain moderate levels of Al, Al salts added as coagulating agents are a major source. There is also considerable variation of the Al in potable waters through the month of November 1989 for an Aberystwyth supply. Private supplies, from groundwaters, in the region generally contain low Al.While most drinking waters in the region contain low Pb, values close to the EEC limit have been recorded for some samples from older houses with Pb pipes, while a sample from a well supply in an old lead mining area contained three times the EEC limit. Despite the wide use of Cu piping for water supplies in the area, most values for this element in mains-water are low, with occasional higher values. However, many private supplies from spring sources are extremely Cu-rich and again levels of this element in a private supply showed a marked temporal variation during November 1989. Zinc levels in potable waters of the area are very variable. That most of the Zn in potable waters is derived from the dissolution of Cu pipes is evidenced by a strong correlation between Cu and Zn in these waters. A few Cd values of over 2 g L(-1) have also been recorded.

PubMed | 3dB Research
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Environmental geochemistry and health | Year: 2013

The many abandoned base metal mines of the mid-Wales ore field are sources of extensive pollution. Some of the mineralised veins contain large amounts of pyrite and marcasite and oxidative weathering of these produces sulphuric acid resulting in very acidic mine drainage waters. In addition, the spoil tips associated with these mines can contain abundant iron sulphides. Drainage waters from these sources have pH values as low as 2.6 and are heavily contaminated with metals such as Al, Zn, Cd and Ni.Two of the main rivers of the area, the Rheidol and Ystwyth, intercept heavily contaminated acidic drainage which has a marked effect on water quality. The Rheidol contains over 100 g L(-1) Zn for 16 km downstream of the acid water influx. This level is over three times the recommended EEC limit for Zn in salmonoid waters of low hardness.

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