Gaseous exchanges of mercury (Hg) at the water-air interface in contaminated sites strongly influence its fate in the environment. In this study, diurnal gaseous Hg exchanges were seasonally evaluated by means of a floating flux chamber in two freshwater environments impacted by anthropogenic sources of Hg, specifically historical mining activity (Solkan Reservoir, Slovenia) and the chlor-alkali industry (Torviscosa dockyard, Italy), and in a pristine site, Cavazzo Lake (Italy). The highest fluxes (21.88 ± 11.55 ng m-2 h-1) were observed at Solkan, coupled with high dissolved gaseous mercury (DGM) and dissolved Hg (THgD) concentrations. Conversely, low vertical mixing and saltwater intrusion at Torviscosa limited Hg mobility through the water column, with higher Hg concentrations in the deep layer near the contaminated sediments. Consequently, both DGM and THgD in surface water were generally lower at Torviscosa than at Solkan, resulting in lower fluxes (19.01 ± 12.65 ng m-2 h-1). However, at this site, evasion may also be limited by high atmospheric Hg levels related to dispersion of emissions from the nearby chlor-alkali plant. Surprisingly, comparable fluxes (15.56 ± 12.78 ng m-2 h-1) and Hg levels in water were observed at Cavazzo, suggesting a previously unidentified Hg input (atmospheric depositions or local geology). Overall, at all sites the fluxes were higher in the summer and correlated to incident UV radiation and water temperature due to enhanced photo production and diffusivity of DGM, the concentrations of which roughly followed the same seasonal trend.

Gaseous Mercury Exchange from Water-Air Interface in Differently Impacted Freshwater Environments

Floreani, Federico
;
Acquavita, Alessandro;Barago, Nicolò;Covelli, Stefano
2022-01-01

Abstract

Gaseous exchanges of mercury (Hg) at the water-air interface in contaminated sites strongly influence its fate in the environment. In this study, diurnal gaseous Hg exchanges were seasonally evaluated by means of a floating flux chamber in two freshwater environments impacted by anthropogenic sources of Hg, specifically historical mining activity (Solkan Reservoir, Slovenia) and the chlor-alkali industry (Torviscosa dockyard, Italy), and in a pristine site, Cavazzo Lake (Italy). The highest fluxes (21.88 ± 11.55 ng m-2 h-1) were observed at Solkan, coupled with high dissolved gaseous mercury (DGM) and dissolved Hg (THgD) concentrations. Conversely, low vertical mixing and saltwater intrusion at Torviscosa limited Hg mobility through the water column, with higher Hg concentrations in the deep layer near the contaminated sediments. Consequently, both DGM and THgD in surface water were generally lower at Torviscosa than at Solkan, resulting in lower fluxes (19.01 ± 12.65 ng m-2 h-1). However, at this site, evasion may also be limited by high atmospheric Hg levels related to dispersion of emissions from the nearby chlor-alkali plant. Surprisingly, comparable fluxes (15.56 ± 12.78 ng m-2 h-1) and Hg levels in water were observed at Cavazzo, suggesting a previously unidentified Hg input (atmospheric depositions or local geology). Overall, at all sites the fluxes were higher in the summer and correlated to incident UV radiation and water temperature due to enhanced photo production and diffusivity of DGM, the concentrations of which roughly followed the same seasonal trend.
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https://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/19/13/8149
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/3025405
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