Articles | Volume 7, issue 2
11 Feb 2010
 | 11 Feb 2010

Changes in mobility and solubility of the redox sensitive metals Fe, Mn and Co at the seawater-sediment interface following CO2 seepage

M. V. Ardelan and E. Steinnes

Abstract. The impact of CO2 seepage on the solubility and distribution of the redox-sensitive metals iron, manganese, and cobalt in seawater and sediment pore water has been studied in experiments in laboratory-scale 0.6 m3 chambers. The mobility and solubility of Fe, Mn and Co were investigated in seawater, membrane filtered seawater, and DGT samplers deployed in water and sediment during a 26 day CO2 seepage study.

During the first phase of the experiment of CO2 seepage (0–16 days), total acid-leachable (pH 1) and "dissolved" (<0.2 μm) concentrations of Fe, Mn and Co (DFe, DMn and DCo) in the seawater increased significantly; the ratios of concentrations of DFe, DMn and DCo in the CO2 chamber to the corresponding values in the control chamber (RDFe, RDMn and RDCo) were as high as 6, 65 and 58, respectively. The second phase of experiment consisted of an additional 10 days of incubation, where the concentrations of all the metals studied still increased but at reduced rates for DMn and DCo. The highest values of RDFe, RDMn and RDCo were about 3 for all metals during this part of the experiment.

DGT (diffusive gradients in thin film) labile fractions denoted FeDGT, MnDGT and CoDGT were, respectively 50, 25 and 22 times higher in the CO2 seepage chamber than in the control chamber in the first phase of the experiment. During the second phase, all DGT labile metal concentrations still increased considerably, most notably for Fe. The ratio of FeDGT in the CO2 chamber to that in the control (RDGT-Fe) was still high, about 5, in the second phase of the experiment, whereas the increase in MnDGT and CoDGT slowed down. Our results indicate that acidification following CO2 seepage enhances the mobility and solubility of Fe Mn and Co in sediment and overlying water with contribution of changing in redox conditions and seepage related re-suspension.

Final-revised paper