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Environmental problems - Chemical approaches
Environmental Chemistry

Environmental Chemistry

Volume 14 Number 4 2017


Environmental context. Volatile selenium compounds from the oceans may ultimately be an important selenium source for agricultural soils. It has been hypothesised that marine algae are responsible for volatile selenium emissions, but in laboratory experiments, we observed minimal volatile selenium production by two marine algae known to produce large amounts of volatile sulfur. Instead, we found hints that bacterial processes may be important in the production of volatile selenium in the oceans.

EN17026Sorption of selected radionuclides on different MnO2 phases

Matthew T. Athon, Glen E. Fryxell, Chia-Ying Chuang and Peter H. Santschi
pp. 207-214

Environmental context. Releases to the aquatic environment from radiological dispersal devices, accidents or leaking waste disposal sites require close monitoring for radionuclide identification. A novel in situ gamma spectrometer deployable on platforms in coastal waters can provide detailed radioisotopic, however, only after the radionuclides are pre-concentrated on efficient sorbents. Here, we report results of particle–water distribution coefficients, KD, on three novel MnO2 sorbents using a set of artificial and natural radionuclides in small batch experiments.

EN16190Occurrence of fluorotelomer alcohols at two Alpine summits: sources, transport and temporal trends

Zhenlan Xu, Lingxiangyu Li, Bernhard Henkelmann and Karl-Werner Schramm
pp. 215-223

Environmental context. The transport and fate of organic pollutants such as fluorotelomer alcohols (FTOHs) in the atmosphere affect their risks to the environment and human health. On the basis of hourly trajectory predictions, we found that, from 2007 to 2010, individual levels of 6:2, 8:2 and 10:2 FTOH were from non-detectable to 72.4 pg m–3 at two Alpine summits. Air mass origin was an important factor determining the Alpine atmospheric FTOH levels.

EN17076Solubility of the nadorite group minerals: implications for mobility of Sb and Bi in oxidised settings

Adam J. Roper, Peter Leverett, Timothy D. Murphy and Peter A. Williams
pp. 224-230

Environmental context. The dispersion of antimony in the environment has been misunderstood over the last few decades. Investigating the solubility of naturally forming mineral phases such as nadorite resulted in determination of its limited role in Sb dispersion, providing evidence that nadorite can only limit antimony dispersion in mildly oxidising conditions. Nadorite can only play a significant role in Sb immobilisation in a particular redox window, which forms only a minor part of the framework of Sb dispersion.

EN17034Micellar oxidative transformation of ciprofloxacin: a kinetic investigation

Alpa Shrivastava, Ajaya Kumar Singh, Neerja Sachdev, Dilip R. Shrivastava and Surendra Prasad
pp. 231-242

Environmental context. Pollution of the aquatic environment by drugs results not only during their manufacture, but also from the excretion of drug residues and the discharge of expired drugs by households and hospitals. The transformation of ciprofloxacin, one of the leading antibiotic drugs, in the presence of surfactants has been investigated. The results provide a better understanding of how ciprofloxacin degrades in aquatic environments by considering the effect of omnipresent surfactants.


Environmental context. The chemical speciation of mercury (Hg) largely controls its biogeochemical cycling and exposure to biota. Here, we investigate the thermodynamic stabilities of complexes formed between inorganic divalent Hg (HgII) and 15 biogeochemically relevant low-molecular-mass (LMM) thiol ligands. This information is critical for accurate modelling of the chemical speciation of HgII and to clarify the role of HgII–LMM thiol complexes in the cycling of Hg in the environment.


Environmental context. Extracellular polymeric substances provide a nucleation site for calcium carbonate and hence are important for bio-calcification processes, with implications for sediment formation and the global carbon cycle. We investigate the calcification potential of polymeric substances produced by five species of cyanobacteria. The results indicate that the protein content and alkaline functional groups of the extracellular polymeric substances may have a significant effect on cyanobacterial calcification.

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