|Title||Arsenic mobilization from historically contaminated mining soils in a continuously operated bioreactor : Implications for risk assessment|
|Author(s)||Rajpert, Liwia; Kolvenbach, Boris A.; Ammann, Erik M.; Hockmann, Kerstin; Nachtegaal, Maarten; Eiche, Elisabeth; Schäffer, Andreas; Corvini, Philippe Francois Xavier; Skłodowska, Aleksandra; Lenz, Markus|
|Source||Environmental Science and Technology 50 (2016)17. - ISSN 0013-936X - p. 9124 - 9132.|
|Department(s)||Sub-department of Environmental Technology|
|Publication type||Refereed Article in a scientific journal|
Concentrations of soil arsenic (As) in the vicinity of the former Złoty Stok gold mine (Lower Silesia, southwest Poland) exceed 1000 μg g-1 in the area, posing an inherent threat to neighboring bodies of water. This study investigated continuous As mobilization under reducing conditions for more than 3 months. In particular, the capacity of autochthonic microflora that live on natural organic matter as the sole carbon/electron source for mobilizing As was assessed. A biphasic mobilization of As was observed. In the first two months, As mobilization was mainly conferred by Mn dissolution despite the prevalence of Fe (0.1 wt % vs 5.4 for Mn and Fe, respectively) as indicated by multiple regression analysis. Thereafter, the sudden increase in aqueous As[III] (up to 2400 μg L-1) was attributed to an almost quintupling of the autochthonic dissimilatory As-reducing community (quantitative polymerase chain reaction). The aqueous speciation influenced by microbial activity led to a reduction of solid phase As species (X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy) and a change in the elemental composition of As hotspots (micro X-ray fluorescence mapping). The depletion of most natural dissolved organic matter and the fact that an extensive mobilization of As[III] occurred after two months raises concerns about the long-term stability of historically As-contaminated sites.