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TitleTrace metals in the environment: a geological perspective
AuthorRasmussen, P E
SourceGeological Survey of Canada, Bulletin 429, 1996, 26 pages, (Open Access)
PublisherNatural Resources Canada
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
Subjectsenvironmental geology; analytical methods; trace metals; metals; environmental impacts; environmental controls
Released1996 04 01; 2014 04 07
AbstractThis report examines current methods of estimating the relative contribution of anthropogenic and natural sources of metals in the environment, with particular attention to areas distant from industrial point sources. Natural background concentrations and cycling processes must be known in order to assess the extent and impact of anthropogenic releases of metals to the environment. There are, however, critical information gaps and uncertainties associated with attempts to quantify the relative contribution of natural and anthropogenic sources to global, regional, and local scale geochemical cycles. One important issue is the orders-of-magnitude uncertainty associated with global emissions inventories. Another important issue is the uncertainty associated with distinguishing natural accumulation processes from anthropogenic effects in the interpretation of metal distribution in soil, vegetation, and lake sediments. Research is required to obtain robust estimates of annual metal contributions to water bodies and to the atmosphere from natural sources.