Reconstructing regional-scale lead contamination of the atmosphere (1850-1980) in the United Kingdom and Ireland using lake sediments

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Abstract

A data set of 49 sediment cores from 41 lakes in the United Kingdom and Ireland was used to investigate how the variability of anthropogenic Pb concentration and accumulation rate affects using lake sediments to reconstruct Pb contamination of the atmosphere at the regional scale. The anthropogenic Pb concentration, when averaged over six to eleven lakes in subregions, was sufficient to isolate the trend in Pb contamination of the atmosphere since 1850 from lake-specific influences. While the anthropogenic Pb accumulation rate varied considerably within subregions, as a result mainly of variable sediment focusing, the results showed that the maximum focusing factor is typically 1.5 to 3 and rarely above 4. Careful application of this finding may allow the history and geographical variation of Pb deposition from the atmosphere at the regional and global scales to be described using lake sediments. A model that relates anthropogenic Pb concentration in lake sediment to Pb flux from the atmosphere was developed and used to reconstruct Pb flux from the atmosphere in three subregions; the reconstructed flux varies from 2.7+/-0.9 to 18.9+/-5.2 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) across the subregions in 1860-1870 to 7.4+/-2.1 to 34.5+/-6.0 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) in 1940-1950.
LanguageEnglish
PagesGB4026
JournalGlobal Biogeochemical Cycles
Volume18
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2004

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lacustrine deposit
atmosphere
accumulation rate
lake
geographical variation
sediment core
lead contamination
history
sediment
contamination

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@article{59ed6edb6d8a4f2dbd0d642beae2d4af,
title = "Reconstructing regional-scale lead contamination of the atmosphere (1850-1980) in the United Kingdom and Ireland using lake sediments",
abstract = "A data set of 49 sediment cores from 41 lakes in the United Kingdom and Ireland was used to investigate how the variability of anthropogenic Pb concentration and accumulation rate affects using lake sediments to reconstruct Pb contamination of the atmosphere at the regional scale. The anthropogenic Pb concentration, when averaged over six to eleven lakes in subregions, was sufficient to isolate the trend in Pb contamination of the atmosphere since 1850 from lake-specific influences. While the anthropogenic Pb accumulation rate varied considerably within subregions, as a result mainly of variable sediment focusing, the results showed that the maximum focusing factor is typically 1.5 to 3 and rarely above 4. Careful application of this finding may allow the history and geographical variation of Pb deposition from the atmosphere at the regional and global scales to be described using lake sediments. A model that relates anthropogenic Pb concentration in lake sediment to Pb flux from the atmosphere was developed and used to reconstruct Pb flux from the atmosphere in three subregions; the reconstructed flux varies from 2.7+/-0.9 to 18.9+/-5.2 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) across the subregions in 1860-1870 to 7.4+/-2.1 to 34.5+/-6.0 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) in 1940-1950.",
author = "B Rippey and RW Douglas",
year = "2004",
month = "12",
doi = "10.1029/2004GB002305",
language = "English",
volume = "18",
pages = "GB4026",
journal = "Global Biogeochemical Cycles",
issn = "0886-6236",
number = "4",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Reconstructing regional-scale lead contamination of the atmosphere (1850-1980) in the United Kingdom and Ireland using lake sediments

AU - Rippey, B

AU - Douglas, RW

PY - 2004/12

Y1 - 2004/12

N2 - A data set of 49 sediment cores from 41 lakes in the United Kingdom and Ireland was used to investigate how the variability of anthropogenic Pb concentration and accumulation rate affects using lake sediments to reconstruct Pb contamination of the atmosphere at the regional scale. The anthropogenic Pb concentration, when averaged over six to eleven lakes in subregions, was sufficient to isolate the trend in Pb contamination of the atmosphere since 1850 from lake-specific influences. While the anthropogenic Pb accumulation rate varied considerably within subregions, as a result mainly of variable sediment focusing, the results showed that the maximum focusing factor is typically 1.5 to 3 and rarely above 4. Careful application of this finding may allow the history and geographical variation of Pb deposition from the atmosphere at the regional and global scales to be described using lake sediments. A model that relates anthropogenic Pb concentration in lake sediment to Pb flux from the atmosphere was developed and used to reconstruct Pb flux from the atmosphere in three subregions; the reconstructed flux varies from 2.7+/-0.9 to 18.9+/-5.2 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) across the subregions in 1860-1870 to 7.4+/-2.1 to 34.5+/-6.0 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) in 1940-1950.

AB - A data set of 49 sediment cores from 41 lakes in the United Kingdom and Ireland was used to investigate how the variability of anthropogenic Pb concentration and accumulation rate affects using lake sediments to reconstruct Pb contamination of the atmosphere at the regional scale. The anthropogenic Pb concentration, when averaged over six to eleven lakes in subregions, was sufficient to isolate the trend in Pb contamination of the atmosphere since 1850 from lake-specific influences. While the anthropogenic Pb accumulation rate varied considerably within subregions, as a result mainly of variable sediment focusing, the results showed that the maximum focusing factor is typically 1.5 to 3 and rarely above 4. Careful application of this finding may allow the history and geographical variation of Pb deposition from the atmosphere at the regional and global scales to be described using lake sediments. A model that relates anthropogenic Pb concentration in lake sediment to Pb flux from the atmosphere was developed and used to reconstruct Pb flux from the atmosphere in three subregions; the reconstructed flux varies from 2.7+/-0.9 to 18.9+/-5.2 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) across the subregions in 1860-1870 to 7.4+/-2.1 to 34.5+/-6.0 mgPb m(-2) yr(-1) in 1940-1950.

U2 - 10.1029/2004GB002305

DO - 10.1029/2004GB002305

M3 - Article

VL - 18

SP - GB4026

JO - Global Biogeochemical Cycles

T2 - Global Biogeochemical Cycles

JF - Global Biogeochemical Cycles

SN - 0886-6236

IS - 4

ER -