Electron transfer in the critical zone is driven by biotic and abiotic mechanisms and controls the fate of inorganic and organic contaminants, whether redox-sensitive or not. In these environments, Fe- and Mn-bearing minerals, as well as organic matter, are key compounds. They interact with each other and constitute important electron shuttles. As a result, not only their solubility but also their structure controls the mobility of many essential and toxic elements. In addition, microorganisms that form hot spots and are widespread in environmental systems are also primordial players in electron transfer processes by acting as a catalyst between an electron donor and an acceptor, and through their contaminant detoxification metabolism.

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