Trace element biomonitoring using mosses in urban areas affected by mud volcanoes around Mt. Etna. The case of the Salinelle, Italy
- 178 Downloads
Trace element impact was assessed using mosses in a densely inhabited area affected by mud volcanoes. Such volcanoes, locally called Salinelle, are phenomena that occur around Mt. Etna (Sicily, Italy) and are interpreted as the surface outflow of a hydrothermal system located below Mt. Etna, releasing sedimentary fluids (hydrocarbons and NaCl brines) along with magmatic gases (mainly CO2 and He). To date, scarce data are available about the presence of trace elements, and no biomonitoring campaigns are reported about the cumulative effects of such emissions. In this study, concentrations of Al, As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Mn, Ni, Pb, V, and Zn were detected in the moss Bryum argenteum, in soil and water. Results showed that the trace element contribution of the Salinelle to the general pollution was significant for Al, Mn, Ni, and Zn. The comparison of trace concentrations in mosses from Salinelle and Etna showed that the mud volcanoes release a greater amount of Al and Mn, whereas similar values of Ni were found. Natural emissions of trace elements could be hazardous in human settlements, in particular, the Salinelle seem to play an important role in environmental pollution.
KeywordsTrace elements Mud volcanoes Salinelle Etna Environmental pollution
This study was partially financed by the Italian Ministry of University and Scientific Research, grants no. 20206059003 (2007) and 20206059012 (2008). Authors wish to thank David Flynn for his useful suggestions, and Dr. Grazia Rita Messina for material provided and fieldwork.
- Aiuppa, A., Brusca, L., D'Alessandro, W., Giammanco, S., & Parello, F. (2002). A case study of gas-water-rock interaction in a volcanic aquifer: the south-western flank of Mt. Etna (Sicily). Boston MA: Kluwer Academic Publishers. 03.04.03. Chemistry of WatersGoogle Scholar
- Aiuppa, A., Allard, P., D'Alessandro, W., Giammanco, S., Parello, F., & Valenza, M. (2004). Magmatic gas leakage at Mount Etna (Sicily, Italy): Relationships with the volcano-tectonic structures, the hydrological pattern and the eruptive activity. In A. Bonaccorso, S. Calvari, M. Coltelli, C. Del Negro, & S. Falsaperla (Eds.), Mt. Etna: Volcano laboratory (pp. 129–145). Washington: American Geophysical Union.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Caracausi, A., Italiano, F., Nuccio, P. M., Paonita, A., & Rizzo, A. (2003). Evidence of deep magma degassing and ascent by geochemistry of peripheral gas emissions at Mount Etna (Italy): Assessment of the magmatic reservoir pressure. Journal of Geophysical Research, 108, 2463. doi: 10.1029/2002JB002095.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Francalanci, L., Tommasini, S., & Conticelli, S. (2004). The volcanic activity of Stromboli in the 1906–1998 AD period: Mineralogical, geochemical and isotope data relevant to the understanding of the plumbing system. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 131, 179–211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Guidoboni, E., Ferrari, G., Mariotti, D., Comastri, A., Tarabusi, G., & Valensise, G. (2007). CFTI4Med, Catalogue of strong earthquakes in Italy (461 B.C.–1997) and Mediterranean area (760 B.C.–1500). INGV-SGA, http://storing.ingv.it/cfti4med/.
- Higgins, G., & Saunders, J. B. (1974). Mud volcanoes, their nature and origin. In: Contribution to the geology and palaeobiology of the Caribbean and adjacent areas, vol. 84 (pp. 101–152). Basel: Verhandlungen Naturforschenden Gesellschaft.Google Scholar
- Lo Giudice, R., & Bonanno, G. (2009). Bioaccumulation of heavy metals in mosses from Etna Volcano and Iblei Mountains (eastern Sicily, Italy). Cryptogamie Bryologie, 30, 143–155.Google Scholar
- Mel'nikov, O. A., Ershov, V. V., Ung, K. C., & Se, S. R. (2008). Dynamics of the gryphon activity of gas-water lithoclastic (mud) volcanoes and their relation to the natural seismicity as exemplified by Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk Volcano (Sakhalin Island). Russian Journal of Pacific Geology, 2, 397–411.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Pecoraino, G., & Giammanco, S. (2005). Geochemical characterization and temporal changes in parietal gas emissions at Mt. Etna (Italy) during the period July 2000–July 2003. Terrestrial Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, 16, 805–841.Google Scholar