Trends in the spatial and temporal distribution of 129I and 99Tc in coastal waters surrounding Ireland using Fucus vesiculosus as a bio-indicator

S. M. Keogh, A. Aldahan, G. Possnert, P. Finegan, L. León Vintró, P. I. Mitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Spatial and temporal trends in 129I and 99Tc concentrations around the Irish coastline have been evaluated using Fucus vesiculosus as a bio-indicator. 129I concentrations in a recent set of seawater samples have also been recorded and reveal an identical spatial pattern. Concentrations of 129I in Fucus from the northeast coast of Ireland proved to be at least two orders of magnitude higher than concentrations in Fucus from the west coast. The 129I content of Fucus increased significantly between 1985 and 2003, in line with increases in discharges of 129I from the Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant. Similar trends were observed in the case of 99Tc. 129I/99Tc ratios in Irish seawater were deduced from the Fucus data, and compared to ratios in discharges from Sellafield and from the French reprocessing plant at Cap de la Hague. Levels of 129I and 99Tc in Fucus from the west coast were found to be enhanced with respect to levels in seaweeds from other regions in the Northern Hemisphere unaffected by discharges from nuclear installations such as those referred to.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-38
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Environmental Radioactivity
Volume95
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2007
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Accelerator mass spectrometry
  • Fucus
  • Iodine-129
  • Irish coastal waters
  • Seawater
  • Technetium-99

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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