Volatile metal(loid) species associated with waste materials: chemical and toxicological aspects.
A review. By using hyphenated anal. techniques, dozens of organometal(loid) species could be detd. in landfill and sewage gases as well as polluted sediments and soils in concns. from the low ng/m3 (resp. kg) to the mid mg/m3 (resp. kg) range. Environmental gases are known to contain up to five species of As, one of Bi, one of Cd, three of Hg, two of I, five of Pb, two of Sb, three of Se, four of Sn, and two of Te (altogether 28 compds. of 10 elements) in addn. to volatile methylated silicones; waters and sediments in the environment show a similar variety of species (addnl. those of Ge). In the light of available toxicol. data our empirical anal. results suggest that certain environmental scenarios may be of potential toxicol. concern (resp. organometal(loid)s given in bracketts): River and harbor sediments (Sn, As, Hg), soil near ore deposits (Hg), gaseous emissions from industrial sludge fermenter (Te, As, Bi, Sb), geothermal water (As, Hg, Sn), sewage gas (As, Bi, Sb, Se, Te), waste gas (As, Sb, Sn), and leachates (As). Generally it can be stated that compared to the omnipresent biogenic background, organometal(loid) emissions from solid waste and contaminated soils and sediments are at least two magnitudes higher, and require toxicol. evaluations in respect to the health of people working or living near these sites.
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