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versão impressa ISSN 0001-3765versão On-line ISSN 1678-2690


BIDONE, EDISON D.; LAYBAUER, LUCIANO; CASTILHOS, ZULEICA C.  e  MADDOCK, JOHN L.. Environmental risk increase due to heavy metal contamination caused by a copper mining activity in Southern Brazil. An. Acad. Bras. Ciênc. [online]. 2001, vol.73, n.2, pp.277-286. ISSN 0001-3765.

The Camaquã Copper Mines (CCM) were the main sulphide deposit in Southern Brazil and have been in operation from last century to 1996. To evaluate water contamination and environmental risk increase by heavy metals from mining operations, two points on the João Dias Creek were sampled (Station 1, background area and Station 2, contaminated area). Mining activity increased the natural weakly heavy metal fluxes by approximately 5424 kg. ( ~ 60%) of the total metal flux, 1542 kg. ( ~ 49%) of dissolved and 3881 kg ( ~ 66%) of particulate metal flux. Total metal flux of anthropic origin was mostly due to Fe followed by Cu > Zn > Mn whereas Cd, As and Pb fluxes were negligible. The potential human health hazards and risk assessment related to daily intake of water from João Dias Creek are mostly due to Mn and should be of concern for the contaminated area. The ingestion of water from station 2 represents incremental risks of 130% and 59% respectively, considering the non-carcinogenic and the carcinogenic effects. The real increase of human health hazards may be greater than those related to the total concentrations since Mn and As dissolved concentrations were 5.5 and 2.0 higher than acceptable, respectively.

Palavras-chave : water contamination; environmental risk; heavy metals; copper mining.

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