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Title: Characterizing the Environmental Availability of Trace Metals in Savannah River Site Soils

Abstract

An eight step sequential extraction technique was used to characterize the environmental availability of trace metals from background and waste site soil samples collected from the US Department of Energy's Savannah River Site (SRS).

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Savannah River Site (US)
Sponsoring Org.:
US Department of Energy (US)
OSTI Identifier:
4763
Report Number(s):
WSRC-TR-98-00359
TRN: AH200114%%238
DOE Contract Number:
AC09-96SR18500
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Resource Relation:
Other Information: PBD: 18 Mar 1999
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; AVAILABILITY; SAVANNAH RIVER PLANT; SOILS; WASTES

Citation Formats

Serkiz, S.M.. Characterizing the Environmental Availability of Trace Metals in Savannah River Site Soils. United States: N. p., 1999. Web. doi:10.2172/4763.
Serkiz, S.M.. Characterizing the Environmental Availability of Trace Metals in Savannah River Site Soils. United States. doi:10.2172/4763.
Serkiz, S.M.. Thu . "Characterizing the Environmental Availability of Trace Metals in Savannah River Site Soils". United States. doi:10.2172/4763. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/4763.
@article{osti_4763,
title = {Characterizing the Environmental Availability of Trace Metals in Savannah River Site Soils},
author = {Serkiz, S.M.},
abstractNote = {An eight step sequential extraction technique was used to characterize the environmental availability of trace metals from background and waste site soil samples collected from the US Department of Energy's Savannah River Site (SRS).},
doi = {10.2172/4763},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Mar 18 00:00:00 EST 1999},
month = {Thu Mar 18 00:00:00 EST 1999}
}

Technical Report:

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  • A study was conducted to determine the naturally occurring concentrations of metals in unimpacted wetland soils at the Savannah River Site located near Aiken, SC. Soil samples were collected from three broad categories of wetlands: (1) large stream floodplain wetlands, (2) small stream floodplain wetlands, and (3) upland bays and depressions. Samples were collected from 75 locations to a depth of 3.1 m. All samples were analyzed for selected metals using EPA protocol and standard methods. Additionally, the pH, exchange capacity, and total organic carbon content of each sample was determined. Standard summary statistics were calculated and results are presentedmore » for each constituent. Box plots were also created relating metals concentrations to grain size distribution. Metals concentrations were found to increase with increasing silt and clay content. This increase in concentration was attributed to increasing cation exchange capacity and increasing organic matter content.« less
  • There are 36,000 acres of wetlands on the Savannah River Site (SRS) and an additional 5,000 acres of floodplain. Recent studies of wetland soils near various waste sites at SRS have shown that some wetlands have been contaminated with pollutants resulting from SRS operations. In general, releases of contaminants to wetland areas have been indirect. These releases may have originated at disposal lagoons or waste facilities located in the vicinity of the wetland areas. Transport mechanisms such as surface runoff, soil erosion, sediment transport, and groundwater seepage into downgradient wetland areas are responsible for the indirect discharges to the wetlandmore » areas. The SRS determined that a database of background geochemical and physical properties for wetland soils on the SRS was needed to facilitate future remedial investigations, human health and ecological risk assessments, treatability studies, and feasibility studies for the wetland areas. These data are needed for comparison to contaminant data collected from wetland soils that have been affected by contamination from SRS operations. This report describes the efforts associated with the collection of soil cores, preparation of a lithologic log for each core, and the processing and packaging of individual soil samples for shipment to analytical laboratory facilities.« less
  • The Savannah River Site (SRS), located in Aiken, Allendale, and Barnwell Counties, South Carolina, is a nuclear production facility operated for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) by Westinghouse Savannah River Company (WSRC). To facilitate future human health and ecological risk assessments, treatability studies, remedial investigations, and feasibility studies for its wetland areas, SRS needs a database of background geochemical and physical properties of wetland soils. These data are needed for comparison to data collected from wetland soils that may have been affected by SRS operations. SRS contains 36,000 acres of wetlands and an additional 5,000 acres of bottom landmore » soils subject to flooding. Recent studies of wetland soils near various waste units at SRS show that some wetlands have been impacted by releases of contaminants resulting from SRS operations (WSRC, 1992). Waste waters originating from the operations facilities typically have been discharged into seepage basins located in upland soils, direct discharge of waste water to wetland areas has been minimal. This suggests that impacted wetland areas have been affected indirectly as a result of transport mechanisms such as surface runoff, groundwater seeps, fluvial or sediment transport, and leaching. Looney et al. (1990) conducted a study to characterize the geochemical and physical properties of upland soils and shallow sediments on the SRS. A primary objective of the upland study was to collect the data needed to assess the qualitative and quantitative impacts of SRS operations on the environment. By comparing the upland soils data to data collected from waste units located in similar soils, SRS impacts could be assessed. The data were also intended to aid in selection of remediation alternatives. Because waste units at SRS have historically been located in upland areas, wetland soils were not sampled. (Abstract Truncated)« less
  • Spills of acids and bases onto Savannah River Site soils will generally be neutralized to acceptable pH levels by passage through the soils.
  • Previous experience with in-situ (Joule-heated) vitrification (ISV) of Savannah River site (SRS) highly weathered soil, has shown that the SRS soil is very refractory and a poor electrical conductor. These findings bring into question the likelihood of utilizing the Joule-heat type of vitrification treatment for waste sites and basins at SRS. An alternative approach may be in-situ plasma vitrification (ISPV). The ISPV approach provides a similar vitrified product and also has a safety advantage in that the melting is initiated at the bottom of a borehole compared to top-down melting for Joule heated ISV.