Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/10216/102055
Author(s): Ribeiro, J
Ferreira da Silva, EF
Li, Z
Ward, C
Flores, D
Title: Petrographic, mineralogical and geochemical characterization of the Serrinha coal waste pile (Douro Coalfield, Portugal) and the potential environmental impacts on soil, sediments and surface waters
Issue Date: 2010
Abstract: Serrinha is the largest coal waste pile resulting from mining activities in the Douro Coalfield, Portugal. The exploitation of anthracite in tens of small mines caused some environmental impacts, as is the case of the coal waste piles that exist in old mines and adjacent areas. The Serrinha waste pile is essentially made up of 2 million tonnes of shales and carbonaceous shales, deposited in a topographical depression over about 30 years. Despite the environmental restoration accomplished in the Serrinha waste pile, some environmental problems seem to persist. In this study a petrographic, mineralogical and geochemical characterization was done in order to recognize and understand these problems. The materials studied were coal waste, sediments and waters from the drainage system and decanting basins, soils from the surrounding areas, leachates from waste material and neoformed minerals formed at the bottom of the waste pile. The main lithologies (carbonaceous shale and lithic arenite) and coal from the Douro Coalfield were also analyzed. Petrographic analysis shows some evidence of weathering (on organic and inorganic matter) related to the time of exposure to the weathering agents and the easy access of air within the waste pile (due to both the poor compaction and the heterogeneity of the material). Mineralogically, the composition of coal waste material has contributions from both the coal and the associated lithologies. R-type cluster analysis of the waste pile material allows two distinct clusters to be identified. In the first cluster a sulfide fraction is represented by the association of As, Cd, Cu, Pb, Ni and Zn, while Fe clustered with Al, Co, and Ti indicates that some of the Fe and the other elements are likely associated with silicate minerals such as clays. The second cluster, represented by Cr, V, Zr, Rb, REE, Mn, Li and Ba, probably represent a silicate fraction, perhaps detrital accessory minerals. The waste pile material, leachates, soils, sediments, neoformed minerals and water analyses indicate the existence of potential environmental impacts due to the acid mine drainage and associated leaching of heavy metals and other elements.
Subject: Engenharia do ambiente
Environmental engineering
Scientific areas: Ciências da engenharia e tecnologias::Engenharia do ambiente
Engineering and technology::Environmental engineering
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10216/102055
Document Type: Artigo em Revista Científica Internacional
Rights: restrictedAccess
Appears in Collections:FCUP - Artigo em Revista Científica Internacional

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