Volume 37, Number C1, February 2002ECORAD 2001: The Radioecology - Ecotoxicology of Continental and Estuatine Environments
|Page(s)||C1-775 - C1-780|
|Published online||25 March 2010|
14C activity in dissolved mineral carbon and identified organic matter in the Loire estuary (France)
Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, UMR 1572 du CEA/CNRS, Domaine du CNRS, 91198 Gif-sur-Yvette cedex, France
2 Laboratoire de Biogéochimie et Chimie Marines, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, UMR 7094 du CNRS, 4 place Jussieu, 75252 Paris cedex 05, France
3 EDF R&D, Service Environnement et Production, 6 quai Watier, 78400 Chatou, France
Bottom sediments, fluid mud and suspended solids and dissolved mineral carbon were sampled during 8 cruises at dates corresponding to various tidal and hydrological conditions. Evaluation of the organic matter sources in particles and surface sediments into the Loire Estuary has been performed using molecular markers. The results obtained show that the natural organic matter is an admixture of terrigenous and algal components. The terrigenous signature derived from land plants is present in the whole estuary and reflect a uniform dispersal of terrestrial inputs. The production of biogenic material by aquatic photosynthetic organisms is higher in the fluvio-estuarine zone and decreases seaward. In addition to natural organic matter, a contamination from fossil fuels and components derived from pyrolysis has been assessed. Organic carbon in suspended matter and sediments show homogenous 14C values (0.3 ± 0.2Bq/g) confirming a soil origin. At the opposite, 14C activity of dissolved mineral carbon is higher ranging between 150 to 200% of modern carbon activity and clearly indicates a noticeable contribution from reactors. Radiocarbon concentrations decrease seaward and are strongly correlated with salinity reflecting hydrodynamic and stratification processes in the marine estuary.
© EDP Sciences, 2002
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