Interactions between trace elements and dissolved organic matter in the stagnant anoxic deep layer of a meromictic lake

Albéric, Patrick, Eric Viollier, Didier Jézéquel, Cécile Grosbois, Gil Michard

Limnol. Oceanogr., 45(5), 2000, 1088-1096 | DOI: 10.4319/lo.2000.45.5.1088

ABSTRACT: About 80% and more than 90% of the dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the bottom water of Lake Pavin were isolated, respectively, on Amberlite XAD and Spherodex DEAE resins. Trace element concentrations in the fractions isolated were analyzed by using ICP-MS. Uranium, molybdenum, and antimony were found to be about 40% associated with fulvic and hydrophilic acids adsorbed on XAD resins at pH 2, the metal-organic association being not dissociated. Much higher percentages of the same elements, plus vanadium, were adsorbed on the DEAE resin at the pH of natural water, possibly because of the better preservation of acid labile organic complexes or of the supplementary adsorption of inorganic compounds. Ultrafiltration and dialysis made it possible to exclude colloidal fractions together with much U (78%), Mo (80%), V (55%), and DOC (65%). These elements and many others (including barium) were previously found to be quite reactive at the bottom of the lake, (apparently being scavenged by settling particles, which are mostly diatoms, then dissolved at the sediment-water interface). Conversely, trace elements with a conservative behavior in the bottom layer (such as lithium and cesium) were not found associated with dissolved organic mater (DOM). Barium was not strongly associated with the extractable DOM, which may argue for a direct interaction with inorganic particles or the existence of very labile complexes. Our work suggests the existence of relatively stable (nonacid labile) U and Mo-DOM colloidal associations in the anoxic bottom waters of the lake and their importance in the scavenging of those metals.

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