Document Detail

Remediation strategies for historical mining and smelting sites.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17240694     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The environmental, social and economic problems associated with abandoned mine sites are serious and global. Environmental damage arising from polluted waters and dispersal of contaminated waste is a feature characteristic of many old mines in North America, Australia, Europe and elsewhere. Today, because of the efficiency of mining operations and legal requirements in many countries for prevention of environmental damage from mining operations, the release of metals to the environment from modern mining is low. However, many mineralized areas that were extensively worked in the 18th and 19th centuries and left abandoned after mining had ceased, have left a legacy of metal contaminated land. Unlike organic chemicals and plastics, metals cannot be degraded chemically or biologically into non-toxic and environmentally neutral constituents. Thus sites contaminated with toxic metals present a particular challenge for remediation. Soil remediation has been the subject of a significant amount of research work in the past decade; this has resulted in a number of remediation options currently available or being developed. Remediation strategies for metal/metalloid contaminated historical mining sites are reviewed and summarized in this article. It focuses on the current applications of in situ remediation with the use of soil amendments (adsorption and precipitation based methods are discussed) and phytoremediation (in situ plant based technology for environmental clean up and restoration). These are promising alternative technologies to traditional options of excavation and ex situ treatment, offering an advantage of being non-invasive and low cost. In particular, they have been shown to be effective in remediation of mining and smelting contaminated sites, although the long-term durability of these treatments cannot be predicted.
Agnieszka Dybowska; Margaret Farago; Eugenia Valsami-Jones; Iain Thornton
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Science progress     Volume:  89     ISSN:  0036-8504     ISO Abbreviation:  Sci Prog     Publication Date:  2006  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-01-23     Completed Date:  2007-02-13     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0411361     Medline TA:  Sci Prog     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  71-138     Citation Subset:  IM    
Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College London, Prince Consort Road, SW7 2BP, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Environmental Remediation*
Soil Pollutants*
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Metals; 0/Soil Pollutants

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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