This project addresses heavy metal release via serpentinite weathering. Serpentinites are rich in Cr, Ni, Cd, Co, and Mn. Very little is known about the fate and transport of these metals once they are released from rocks via chemical weathering. Because these rocks are often geographically isolated, they have not been extensively studied. However, the release of heavy metals could pose a significant health risk to the families who drink groundwater in these areas.
A. Location of Pine Hill Quarry, Little Deer Isle, ME, and Torrey Pond, Deer Isle, ME. B. Cliff face and tailings pile at Pine Hill Quarry.
This project will produce the first study (to the author’s knowledge) that directly addresses the chemistry of waters associated with serpentinites in the eastern United States. Serpentinites are found along both the east and west coasts of North America and are found along active and extinct convergent margins worldwide. If it is found that heavy metal mobilization related to serpentinites is a possibility, this will suggest that more careful monitoring of groundwater wells in these areas is necessary.
Department of Earth Sciences
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469
Image Description: Pine Hill Quary Topo
Image Description: Pine Hill Quarry
Mon, Jun 3 - Sustaining the Saco Estuary Conference
Fri, Jun 7 - New England Lakes Conference
Sun, Jun 9 - US Society for Ecological Economics Conference
Mon, Jul 8 - UNH Faculty Seminar - Ecology and Ethnicity