Stable isotopes in aqueous sulphate as tracers of natural and contaminant sulphate sources: a reconnaissance study of the Xingwen karst aquifer, Sichuan, China
Published:January 01, 2007
S. H. Bottrell, 2007. "Stable isotopes in aqueous sulphate as tracers of natural and contaminant sulphate sources: a reconnaissance study of the Xingwen karst aquifer, Sichuan, China", Natural and Anthropogenic Hazards in Karst Areas: Recognition, Analysis and Mitigation, M. Parise, J. Gunn
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Isotopic compositions of sulphate (δ18O and δ34S) have been analysed in groundwaters from a karst aquifer in Xingwen, China to assess their use as indigenous tracers of different pollutant sulphate sources. Sulphate δ18O is highly effective at distinguishing sulphate from atmospheric ‘acid rain’ sources (higher δ18O values) from sulphate produced by aqueous pyrite oxidation (natural or acid mine drainage), which always has lower δ18O. The range of sulphate δ34S produced by aqueous oxidation of different pyrite sources is sufficiently wide to enable different natural and pollutant sulphate sources to be distinguished. Despite the fact that streams containing processing fines and pyrite mine drainage both derive sulphate from oxidation of ore materials, there is still a clear distinction in their sulphate δ34S. A combination of sulphur and oxygen isotopic measurements is thus highly effective at discriminating between all the sulphate sources to the karst aquifer and this indigenous tracer provides a powerful tool for assessing the impact of acid mine drainage on karst groundwater.
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Natural and Anthropogenic Hazards in Karst Areas: Recognition, Analysis and Mitigation
The book presents an overview of the main hazards affecting karst, including collapse and subsidence phenomena, hydrological hazards and human-induced geohazards. Consideration is also given to the problems of geohazard management in karst. The geological and hydrological properties of karst terrains make them among the most fragile in the world and pose serious problems for land managers. Sustainable development in these terrains requires efforts to limit geohazards of anthropogenic origin and to recognize and mitigate against those of natural origin. Aimed at providing the reader with worldwide case studies, the contributions cover a range of geological and morphological settings. Geographically, the fourteen papers discuss very different karst areas, from North America, the Caribbean and Asia to several karst areas in Europe, including the British Isles, Spain, France and Italy.