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Distribution, Source Identification, and Output flux of Barium in Surface Waters in the Sanjiangyuan Region and Qilian Mountain Region of Tibetan Plateau TEXT SIZE: A A A

Water safety concerning Barium (Ba) has become a public issue worldwide. As the "Asian water tower", Tibetan Plateau is the birthplace of many rivers. However, the distribution, source, and output flux of Ba are largely unknown. In this study, surface water samples were collected from different catchments in the Sanjiangyuan Region (SJY) and the Qilian Mountain Region (QLM) in Tibetan Plateau. The concentration of Ba was determined by inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy, the source of Ba was discussed by a Gibbs diagram, and the output flux of Ba was estimated using the observation data from different hydrological stations. The results showed that the Ba concentrations were less than 160 & mu;g/L, which is much lower than the guideline value of 700 & mu;g/L for surface waters. The main sources of Ba were rock weathering and evaporation concentration. The total Ba output flux from SJY and QLM to downstream waters was 1,240 t/yr, which accounts for about 0.01% of the global freshwater Ba output flux to the ocean. The Ba production rate in Tibetan Plateau was comparable with that in the Arctic rivers. Under the scenario of global warming, water safety issues concerning Ba will be more serious since the output flux of Ba to downstream waters will be increased by intensified rock weathering, evaporation concentration, glacial retreat, and permafrost thawing. This study reveals the Ba flux and production rate in Tibetan Plateau, which will provide important information for evaluating the environmental impact of global warming on public health.

Publication name

 Bulletin Of Environmental Contamination And Toxicology, Volume 111, Issue 1, Article Number 7, DOI 10.1007/s00128-023-03747-z, Published JUL 2023


 Yao, Zuxiu; Sun, Guangyi; Lin, Li; Zhang, Wei; Zhang, Junfang; Gao, Lingjian; Shang, Lihai

Corresponding author(s) 

 Shang, Lihai
 Chinese Acad Sci, Inst Geochem, State Key Lab Environm Geochem, Guiyang 550081, Peoples R China

Author(s) from IGCAS   Shang, Lihai; Yao, Zuxiu; Sun, Guangyi; Lin, Li; Zhang, Wei; Gao, Lingjian

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