Trace and major element pollution originating from coal ash suspension and transport processes
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Coal ash obtained by coal combustion in the “Nikola Tesla A” power plant in Obrenovac, near Belgrade, Yugoslavia, is mixed with water of the Sava river and transported to the dump. In order to assess pollution caused by leaching of some minor and major elements during ash transport through the pipeline, two sets of samples (six samples each) were subjected to a modified sequential extraction. The first set consisted of coal ash samples taken immediately after combustion, while the second set was obtained by extraction with river water, imitating the processes that occur in the pipeline. Samples were extracted consecutively with distilled water and a 1 M solution of KCl, pH 7, and the differences in extractability were compared in order to predict potential pollution. Considering concentrations of seven trace elements as well as five major elements in extracts from a total of 12 samples, it can be concluded that lead and cadmium do not present an environmental threat during and immediat...ely after ash transport to the dump. Portions of zinc, nickel and chromium are released during the ash transport, and arsenic and manganese are released continuously. Copper and iron do not present an environmental threat due to element leaching during and immediately after the coal ash suspension and transport. On the contrary, these elements, as well as chromium, become concentrated during coal ash transport. Adsorbed portions of calcium, magnesium and potassium are also leached during coal ash transport.
Keywords:Major elements / Leaching / Suspension / Transport / Coal Ash / Trace elements
Source:Environment International, 2001, 26, 4, 251-255