Abstract

Spring and stream waters from the San Antonio de los Cobres area in NW Argentina have high concentrations of arsenic (As) (151–9490 μg l−1), of which AsV varies widely (6–~100% of total As). Arsenic concentrations correlate with Na, K, Cl, HCO3, B and Li, which are high in the spring waters and are typical of geothermal areas world-wide. Springs near San Antonio supply large amounts of As to the Rio San Antonio de los Cobres (up to 1180 μg l−1), but these concentrations decline to 400 μg l−1 within 10 km of the spring inputs, due to dilution and mineral precipitation.

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