Anthropogenic tritium in the Loire River estuary, France

Abstract : This work is carried out in the frame of a radioecological monitoring of anthropogenic tritiumfromupstream and downstream of several nuclear power plants along the Loire River to its estuary. This paper studies the variation of anthropogenic tritium species in the Loire River system from upstream to the mouth of the estuary. Tritiated water (HTO and HTO in sediment pore water) and organically bound tritium (OBT) forms were analysed after dedicated pre-treatments. The collected environmental samples consist in (i) surface-sediment and core samples from the river floor, (ii) surface and water column samples. A maximum 3H activity concentration of 26 ± 3 Bq·L−1 in the Loire River estuary is obtained whereas an environmental background level around 1 Bq·L−1 is determined for a non influenced continental area by anthropogenic activities. The European follow-up indicator used as a screening value is 100 Bq·L−1. The conservative tritiumbehaviour was used in order to characterize the tidal regime and river flow influences in the mixing zone of the Loire River estuary. Furthermore, OBT levels and total organically carbon (TOC) content are explored. Finally, ratios of OBT relative to HTO in sediment pore water in surface-sediment and core samples are also discussed.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, September 13, 2016 - 12:02:32 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - 4:50:21 PM

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Olivier Peron, Claire Gégout, Benjamin Reeves, Gurvan Rousseau, Gilles Montavon, et al.. Anthropogenic tritium in the Loire River estuary, France. Journal of Sea Research, Elsevier, 2016, 118, pp.69-76. ⟨10.1016/j.seares.2016.04.003⟩. ⟨in2p3-01365268⟩

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