Distribution of Organic Carbon in the Berkeley Pit Lake, Butte, Montana
- 134 Downloads
The concentration of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the Berkeley pit lake water ranges from 2 to 4 mg/L, and is comparable to that of its inflow waters. On the dates sampled, the DOC concentrations decreased towards the surface of the lake, in a manner similar to the concentration of dissolved Fe. This may reflect adsorption of DOC onto newly formed ferric precipitates in the epilimnion of the lake. The total organic carbon (TOC) content of the lake sediment is 0.20 to 0.33%, and is on the low end of TOC in natural aquatic sediments. In contrast, the DOC concentrations of sediment pore waters are unusually high, ranging from 50 to 380 mg/L, and are much higher than DOC values of pore waters from typical marine or lacustrine sediments. The high DOC concentrations are explained by release of adsorbed organic carbon from ferric precipitates as they age and recrystallize, coupled with the relative scarcity of heterotrophic bacteria in the acidic and heavy metal-rich waters that would otherwise consume DOC through reduction of sulfate.
Keywordsacid mine drainage characterization dissolved organic carbon pit lake pore water sediment
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.