Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 533493
Title Effects of sediment resuspension on the oxidation of acid-volatile sulfides and release of metals (iron, manganese, zinc) in Pescadero estuary (CA, USA)
Author(s) Richards, Chandra M.; Puffelen, Jasper L. van; Pallud, Céline
Source Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 37 (2018)4. - ISSN 0730-7268 - p. 993 - 1006.
Department(s) Sub-department of Environmental Technology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2018
Keyword(s) Acid-volatile sulfide - Hydrogen sulfide - Metal dissolution - Sediment chemistry - Water quality
Abstract Bar-built estuaries are unique ecosystems characterized by the presence of a sandbar barrier, which separates the estuary from the ocean for extended periods and can naturally reopen to the ocean with heavy rainfall and freshwater inflows. The physical effects associated with the transition from closed to open state, specifically water mixing and sediment resuspension, often indirectly worsen water quality conditions and are suspected to drive near-annual fish kills at the Pescadero estuary in northern California. The effects of sediment acid-volatile sulfide (AVS) oxidation, specifically oxygen depletion, acidification, and metal release, are believed to aggravate water conditions for fish but remain poorly understood. We performed slurry incubations containing sediment from 4 sites in the Pescadero estuary, representing a gradient from the Pacific Ocean to freshwater tributaries. We measured near-maximum rates of aqueous hydrogen sulfide oxidation, sediment AVS oxidation, sulfate production, and acidification, as well as near-maximum release rates of iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), and zinc (Zn) to the water column. We estimated AVS oxidation rates of 8 to 21mmolSkg-1 d-1, which were 3 orders of magnitude higher than aqueous hydrogen sulfide oxidation rates, 6 to 26μmolSkg-1 d-1. We suggest that aqueous hydrogen sulfide cannot be responsible for the observed kills because of low concentrations and minimal oxidative effects on pH and metal concentrations. However, the oxidative effects of AVS are potentially severe, decreasing pH to strongly acidic levels and releasing aqueous Fe, Mn, and Zn concentrations up to 11.2mM, 0.46mM, and 88μM, respectively, indicating a potential role in worsening water conditions for fish in the Pescadero estuary.
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