Temporal changes in the distribution of natural radionuclides along the Cumbrian coast following the reduction of discharges from a phosphoric acid production plant

M McCartney, Christine Davidson, S E Howe, G E Keating

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Abstract

The concentrations of a range of natural radionuclides (, , , , , and ) in the marine environment near a phosphoric acid production plant have been monitored over the period 1992–1997. At the beginning of the study period, concentrations of and its daughters were clearly enhanced in mussel, winkle and sediment samples. The highest concentrations of 238U, , and in the sediment of Whitehaven harbour were 685±17, 1290±35, 140±2 and 7750±200 Bq kg−1, respectively. Since 1992, discharges of these radionuclides have been greatly reduced and levels in the environment have decreased accordingly. The radiation dose to the general public is mainly due to the ingestion of and to a lesser extent in molluscs. The committed effective dose to a group of local seafood consumers via this route has decreased from 1.0 in 1993 to 0.19 mSv yr−1 in 1997, although the latter is still above the expected background level of 0.1 mSv yr−1. The enhanced levels are maintained by the reduced but not insignificant discharges from the plant and, at Whitehaven perhaps, by the continuing presence of phosphate ore in the sediment.
LanguageEnglish
Pages279-291
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Environmental Radioactivity
Volume49
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Fingerprint

Phosphoric acid
Radioisotopes
Coastal zones
radionuclide
Sediments
Seafood
Mollusca
Bivalvia
coast
acid
Molluscs
sediment
Eating
seafood
Phosphates
Radiation
background level
Ports and harbors
mollusc
Ores

Keywords

  • technological enhancement
  • seafood
  • doses
  • natural radionuclides
  • phosphates
  • phosphoril aid production
  • Cumbria

Cite this

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title = "Temporal changes in the distribution of natural radionuclides along the Cumbrian coast following the reduction of discharges from a phosphoric acid production plant",
abstract = "The concentrations of a range of natural radionuclides (, , , , , and ) in the marine environment near a phosphoric acid production plant have been monitored over the period 1992–1997. At the beginning of the study period, concentrations of and its daughters were clearly enhanced in mussel, winkle and sediment samples. The highest concentrations of 238U, , and in the sediment of Whitehaven harbour were 685±17, 1290±35, 140±2 and 7750±200 Bq kg−1, respectively. Since 1992, discharges of these radionuclides have been greatly reduced and levels in the environment have decreased accordingly. The radiation dose to the general public is mainly due to the ingestion of and to a lesser extent in molluscs. The committed effective dose to a group of local seafood consumers via this route has decreased from 1.0 in 1993 to 0.19 mSv yr−1 in 1997, although the latter is still above the expected background level of 0.1 mSv yr−1. The enhanced levels are maintained by the reduced but not insignificant discharges from the plant and, at Whitehaven perhaps, by the continuing presence of phosphate ore in the sediment.",
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T1 - Temporal changes in the distribution of natural radionuclides along the Cumbrian coast following the reduction of discharges from a phosphoric acid production plant

AU - McCartney, M

AU - Davidson, Christine

AU - Howe, S E

AU - Keating, G E

PY - 2000

Y1 - 2000

N2 - The concentrations of a range of natural radionuclides (, , , , , and ) in the marine environment near a phosphoric acid production plant have been monitored over the period 1992–1997. At the beginning of the study period, concentrations of and its daughters were clearly enhanced in mussel, winkle and sediment samples. The highest concentrations of 238U, , and in the sediment of Whitehaven harbour were 685±17, 1290±35, 140±2 and 7750±200 Bq kg−1, respectively. Since 1992, discharges of these radionuclides have been greatly reduced and levels in the environment have decreased accordingly. The radiation dose to the general public is mainly due to the ingestion of and to a lesser extent in molluscs. The committed effective dose to a group of local seafood consumers via this route has decreased from 1.0 in 1993 to 0.19 mSv yr−1 in 1997, although the latter is still above the expected background level of 0.1 mSv yr−1. The enhanced levels are maintained by the reduced but not insignificant discharges from the plant and, at Whitehaven perhaps, by the continuing presence of phosphate ore in the sediment.

AB - The concentrations of a range of natural radionuclides (, , , , , and ) in the marine environment near a phosphoric acid production plant have been monitored over the period 1992–1997. At the beginning of the study period, concentrations of and its daughters were clearly enhanced in mussel, winkle and sediment samples. The highest concentrations of 238U, , and in the sediment of Whitehaven harbour were 685±17, 1290±35, 140±2 and 7750±200 Bq kg−1, respectively. Since 1992, discharges of these radionuclides have been greatly reduced and levels in the environment have decreased accordingly. The radiation dose to the general public is mainly due to the ingestion of and to a lesser extent in molluscs. The committed effective dose to a group of local seafood consumers via this route has decreased from 1.0 in 1993 to 0.19 mSv yr−1 in 1997, although the latter is still above the expected background level of 0.1 mSv yr−1. The enhanced levels are maintained by the reduced but not insignificant discharges from the plant and, at Whitehaven perhaps, by the continuing presence of phosphate ore in the sediment.

KW - technological enhancement

KW - seafood

KW - doses

KW - natural radionuclides

KW - phosphates

KW - phosphoril aid production

KW - Cumbria

U2 - 10.1016/S0265-931X(99)00120-4

DO - 10.1016/S0265-931X(99)00120-4

M3 - Article

VL - 49

SP - 279

EP - 291

JO - Journal of Environmental Radioactivity

T2 - Journal of Environmental Radioactivity

JF - Journal of Environmental Radioactivity

SN - 0265-931X

IS - 3

ER -