Quantitative Assessment of Lateral Migration of the Chernobyl-Derived 137Cs in Contaminated Territories of the East European Plain

  • Valentin Golosov
  • Maxim Ivanov


Results of detailed studies of Chernobyl-derived 137Cs redistribution by fluvial processes in different landscape conditions of the East European Plain are presented. Lateral migration of 137Cs is mostly associated with sediment transport along the pathways from the cultivated slopes through dry valleys to the river valley bottom. Most of the Chernobyl-derived 137Cs redeposited in the low parts of the cultivated field and on the dry valley bottoms, where the total 137Cs inventories exceeded initial fallout deposits after three decades from April to May 1986. Ponds and reservoirs, as well as low-level river floodplains, are also areas with high 137Cs inventories due to high sedimentation rates. However, less than 0.3–0.5% of the total inventory of Chernobyl-derived 137Cs was washed out from the areas with a high (>50%) proportion of arable lands over the past three decades. Climate and land-use changes observed during the last 30 years led to a considerable reduction of erosion rates on the arable lands and accordingly lateral migration of particulate 137Cs.


Chernobyl-derived 137Cs Lateral migration Water erosion Sediment sinks Climate change Land-use changes East European Plain 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Valentin Golosov
    • 1
    • 2
  • Maxim Ivanov
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of GeographyLomonosov Moscow State UniversityMoscowRussia
  2. 2.Institute of GeographyRussian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia

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