Contaminated Rivers: A Geomorphological-Geochemical Approach by Jerry R. Miller

By Jerry R. Miller

This publication offers an introductory figuring out of fluvial geomorphic rules. It examines how those rules will be built-in with geochemical facts to cost-effectively signify, examine and remediate infected rivers.

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Example text

These observations demonstrate that it is not only important to determine the physical partitioning that occurs in alluvial deposits of the river of interest, but the sedimentology of the deposits in general. 3. 39 CHEMICAL PARTITIONING OF TRACE ELEMENTS IN SEDIMENT In the previous section, we examined the partitioning of trace elements in alluvial deposits as a function of the physical characteristics of the sediment. Chemical partitioning also occurs within riverine environments, and it plays a significant role in the accumulation and retention of trace elements in alluvial deposits.

In fact, their importance will change spatially along the river and through time with changes in physiochemical conditions. Nonetheless, it is generally agreed that the most important controls on metal concentrations and, thus their mobility, include some combination of the processes of precipitation/dissolution and adsorption/ desorption. 1. Precipitation and dissolution Rivers can be thought of as containing a combination of solid phases (consisting of minerals, noncrystalline (amorphous) solids, and organic material) and an aqueous phase (including water and all of its dissolved constituents).

Source ascription is frequently complicated by the occurrence of multiple point and nonpoint sources which may deliver similar contaminants to the river in unknown quantities and at varying rates through time. 2 lists the potential sources of selected contaminants found in river systems. The sources, in this case, have been subdivided into six categories. 2. Sources associated with selected classes of contaminants Source/chemical class Agricultural croplands1 Mine Sites1 Atmospheric Deposition1 Urban Sources1 Industrial Discharges Municipal Discharges Mercury Metals ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ PCBs PAHs Pesticides Other organics ∗ Modified from USEPA 1997 1 Classified as non-point source pollution ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ National Assessments of River Health 19 from urban areas, and (4) drainage from mine sites.

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