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Using lead isotopes and potentially toxic elements to trace pollutant sources in the northern region of Guanabara Bay, southeastern Brazil

Potratz, Guilherme Loriato, Geraldes, Mauro Cesar, Bizzi, Sávio, Nogueira, Leandro, Martins, Maria Virginia Alves
Marine pollution bulletin 2019
aerosols, anthropogenic activities, coasts, estuaries, lead, mine tailings, municipal solid waste, pollutants, rivers, stable isotopes, toxic substances, waste incineration, water pollution, Brazil
Guanabara Bay (southeastern Brazil) is located in the metropolitan region of the Rio de Janeiro State and is being affected by high levels of anthropization. This work analyzes not only the concentrations of potentially toxic elements (PTEs), but also Pb stable isotopes to trace possible anthropogenic and natural sources of pollutants in the northern region of Guanabara Bay and the Suruí and Magé rivers. The Governador Island Channel, the regions to the north of Governador Island, north and west of Paquetá Island, and the Magé coast are most affected by PTEs. In the study area, high PTE concentrations result from both natural and anthropogenic sources. The main sources of metals include municipal solid waste incineration, atmospheric aerosols, and ore lead tailings, as indicated by Pb isotopes. This work shows that Pb stable isotopes, associated with metal contamination, can improve the assessment of estuarine environment quality.