Valores de referência para metais potencialmente tóxicos em sedimentos e em moluscos filtradores no Rio Ribeira de Iguape / Reference values to potentially toxic metals in sediments and mussels in the River Ribeira de Iguape
Letícia Manolio de Paula Martins
DATA DE PUBLICAÇÃO
The Ribeira do Iguape River Basin (RIRB) was historically influenced by intense mining activities mainly related to lead (Pb) extraction. For many decades, such exploitation was conducted under rudimentary conditions without control of environmental impacts produced during the stages of ore extraction and beneficiation. Thus, mining wastes and metallurgical slags were directly discharged into the Ribeira de Iguape River, causing environmental contamination by metals. The present investigation has the purpose of developing reference values to some metals (Cd, Pb, Cr, Zn and Cu) to RIRB, in order to provide information that allow the environmental monitoring and the determination of environmental contamination to Ribeira do Iguape River Basin. To achieve that, samples of two bivalves species were collected: Corbicula fluminea and Anodontites tenebricosus. Besides, alluvial sediments from a site located upstream to the contamination sources for metals (mining and smelting activities) were also collected. For both species, soft tissues were firstly separated from their respective shells, freeze-dried and then analyzed in a mass spectrometer (ICP/MS) and atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS). Alluvial sediment samples were splitted into two aliquots, one containing magnetic minerals and another with sediment containing non-magnetic minerals. These samples were separated for particle size and analyzed by X-ray fluorescence (XRF) in order to obtain the metals concentrations for each class of particle size. For presence of metals in bivalves, concentrations were mostly lower than those reported by other authors along RIRB areas influenced by mining and smelting residues. In the non-magnetic sediment fraction, the prominent substance was SiO2. Regarding to potentially toxic metals investigated in this study, all of them were found in such samples. On the other hand, in the magnetic sediment fraction, the prominent chemical was Fe2O3. Pb, Cr, Zn and Cu were found in highest concentrations in the finer grain fractions. The Cr concentration was noticeably high. The higher concentration of this metal in magnetic sediment fractions, when compared to the non-magnetic ones, may indicate a probable source of Cr, Pb, Zn e Cu from the mineral chromite (FeCr2O4). These data, together with that from specific literature, indicate that the origin of Cr at RIRB is probably natural .In general, the potentially toxic metals concentrations found in this study for both species of mussel and sediment are mostly lower than the concentrations obtained by others authors for other portions of Ribeira de Iguape River under influence of mining activities, thus, such results suggest that these concentrations may be considered as local reference values for RIRB.