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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 15 No. 2, p. 113-116
    Received: Nov 5, 1984

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Nickel, Cadmium, and Selenium Levels in Native Soil, Overburden, and Spoil Materials1

  1. J. L. Pitt,
  2. L. R. Hossner and
  3. J. R. Melton2



Nickel (Ni), cadmium (Cd), and selenium (se) analyses showed that there was no significant difference in the concentration of these elements when compared over the three sample types examined (native soil, overburden, and spoil materials obtained from four surface mining operations in Texas). The soils belong to the Paleustalf, Paleudult, Hapludalf, and Paleudalf Great Groups. Ranges in total concentrations of the individual elements were 4.01 to 71.4 mg kg−1 Ni, 0.00 to 2.46 mg kg−1 Cd, and 0.04 to 10.7 mg kg−1 Se for the native soil, overburden, and spoil samples. At each site, the geological environments of deposition had significantly different levels of Ni, Cd, and Se. Depositional environments containing higher concentrations of fine materials (Backswamp, flood basin, etc.) had the highest concentrations of Ni and Cd. Selenium was highest in the lignite and deposits closely associated with the lignite. Results of this study indicate that no significant elevation of total Ni, Cd, and Se would be expected from the complete mixing of overburden following the surface mining operation.

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