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Historical pattern and mass balance of trace metals in sediments of the northwestern Adriatic Sea Shelf

October 21, 2013

In view of the recent action in Marine Strategy Framework Directive, reconstructing the history of anthropogenic metal inputs and calculating the budgets for the northwestern part of the Italian Adriatic basin can provide a benchmark for comparison with new evidences and enlighten recent environmental changes. Among the metals, the attention was focused on Pb and Zn, as they provide the most significant anthropogenic signals. In 1988, areal distributions clearly identified the Po, Adige and Brenta rivers as the main sources of contaminants. The study area was divided in three compartments. The area in front of the Po delta represented a sink for metals but the accumulation of Zn and Pb integrated over the entire study area suggests an effective export throughout southern boundary. Most concentration-depth/year profiles in cores showed an upward increase from the Italian Unification (1861), with a still significant anthropogenic supply at the time of sampling.

Romano S, Langone L, Frignani M, Albertazzi S, Focaccia P, Belluci L G, Ravaioli M, 2013, Historical pattern and mass balance of trace metals in sediments of the northwestern Adriatic Sea Shelf, Marine Pollution Bulletin, 2013, doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2013.09.034. Article.

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