High-resolution reconstruction of atmospheric deposition of trace metals and metalloids since AD 1400 recorded by ombrotrophic peat cores in Hautes-Fagnes, Belgium

Mohammed Allan, Gaël Le Roux, François De Vleeschouwer, Richard Bindler, Maarten Blaauw, Natalia Piotrowska, Nathalie Fagel, Jaroslaw Sikorski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The objective of our study was to determine the trace metal accumulation rates in the Misten bog, Hautes-Fagnes, Belgium, and assess these in relation to established histories of atmospheric emissions from anthropogenic sources. To address these aims we analyzed trace metals and metalloids (Pb, Cu, Ni, As, Sb, Cr, Co, V, Cd and Zn), as well as Pb isotopes, using XRF, Q-ICP-MS and MC-ICP-MS, respectively in two 40-cm peat sections, spanning the last 600 yr. The temporal increase of metal fluxes from the inception of the Industrial Revolution to the present varies by a factor of 5–50, with peak values found between AD 1930 and 1990. A cluster analysis combined with Pb isotopic composition allows the identification of the main sources of Pb and by inference of the other metals, which indicates that coal consumption and metallurgical activities were the predominant sources of pollution during the last 600 years.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-394
Number of pages14
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Volume178
Early online date23 Apr 2013
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Toxicology

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