Deposition of Sulfate and Heavy Metals on the Kola Peninsula

D.Jaffe, B.Cerundolo, J.Rickers, R.Stolzberg and A.Baklanov. Sci.Tot.Env. 160/161, 127-134. 1995.


Snowpack samples were collected at 20 sites on the Kola Peninsula, Russia, in April of 1991. Samples were collected in both remote regions and areas impacted by nearby emission sources, including the "Severonikel" Cu-Ni smelter in the city of Monchegorsk. In the background regions total winter depositions for non-seasalt SO42-, NO3-, Cu and Ni ranged from 120-300, 70-300, 6-14 and 0.3-1.5 mg/m2 respectively and the snowpack pH ranged from 4.4-4.9. In the region near the Severonikel Cu-Ni smelter, snowpack SO42-, and especially Cu and Ni concentrations were enhanced considerably. Total winter deposition in this area was in the range of 390-500, 190-280, and 14-32 mg/m2 for non-seasalt SO42-, Cu, and Ni respectively, with little influence on snowpack pH.

In the vicinity of the Severonikel complex the data indicate relatively inefficient removal of sulfur dioxide by snow and more efficient removal of metal containing particles. The 6 month sulfate deposition within 20 km of the smelter accounts for much less than 1% of the smelter SO2 emissions over the same period. In contrast, approximately 24% of the smelter copper emissions are deposited within 20 km of the source. This suggests an important role for sedimentation of relatively large metal containing particles in the vicinity of the smelter. Pb, As, and Cd deposition to the snowpack is much less, suggesting that emissions of these more toxic elements are largely absent or in smaller particles (see Kelley et al., this volume).