The origin of a resurgent hexavalent chromium contamination in groundwater from a phreatic aquifer in the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region plain was investigated by chromium isotopic systematics. The area underwent a severe Cr(VI) contamination by industrial effluents in 1997, when Cr(VI) concentration in groundwater reached 4500 µg/L. In subsequent years the contamination naturally attenuated, totally disappearing in 2003. A renewal of water contamination was observed in 2008, Cr(VI) reaching 1560 µg/L. The δ53Cr value in groundwater and extracts from sediments was measured in 2009–2011, and it ranges between −3.21 and +0.21‰ and between −4.71 and +1.26‰, respectively. Due to the lack of geogenic Cr-sources, these data are interpreted as evidence of the subsequent oxidation through Mn-oxides of the Cr(III) hosted in the aquifer and originated by the reduction of the original industrial chromates. Cr(III) is characterized by negative δ53Cr, starting from the δ53Cr value around zero of Cr(VI) in industrial effluents. Oxidation liberates soluble Cr(VI) which is transported by groundwater and permeated soils. The complex Cr-isotopic vs. concentration distribution reflects both the new Cr(VI) reduction and dilution processes in the aquifer system. From an environmental point of view, the data raise concerns regarding the potential impact of past Cr(VI)-contamination.

Chromium isotopes tracking the resurgence of hexavalent chromium contamination in a past-contaminated area in the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region, northern Italy

Petrini, Riccardo;Ghezzi, Lisa
2019-01-01

Abstract

The origin of a resurgent hexavalent chromium contamination in groundwater from a phreatic aquifer in the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region plain was investigated by chromium isotopic systematics. The area underwent a severe Cr(VI) contamination by industrial effluents in 1997, when Cr(VI) concentration in groundwater reached 4500 µg/L. In subsequent years the contamination naturally attenuated, totally disappearing in 2003. A renewal of water contamination was observed in 2008, Cr(VI) reaching 1560 µg/L. The δ53Cr value in groundwater and extracts from sediments was measured in 2009–2011, and it ranges between −3.21 and +0.21‰ and between −4.71 and +1.26‰, respectively. Due to the lack of geogenic Cr-sources, these data are interpreted as evidence of the subsequent oxidation through Mn-oxides of the Cr(III) hosted in the aquifer and originated by the reduction of the original industrial chromates. Cr(III) is characterized by negative δ53Cr, starting from the δ53Cr value around zero of Cr(VI) in industrial effluents. Oxidation liberates soluble Cr(VI) which is transported by groundwater and permeated soils. The complex Cr-isotopic vs. concentration distribution reflects both the new Cr(VI) reduction and dilution processes in the aquifer system. From an environmental point of view, the data raise concerns regarding the potential impact of past Cr(VI)-contamination.
2019
Slejko, Francesca F.; Petrini, Riccardo; Lutman, Anna; Forte, Claudia; Ghezzi, Lisa
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/959694
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