Biogeochemical Influence on the Mobility of Uranium in the Marsh Soil of the Lower Williams Lake, Elliot Lake

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Mizutani, Kazuhito

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University of Guelph


Wetlands act as filters for uranium and other elements of concern in mining environments. The anaerobic respiration of microorganisms plays an important role in immobilizing uranium in wetland systems. In this study, the lateral and vertical distribution of uranium, and other key elements in a small rehabilitated marsh were surveyed by sampling surface organic soils, soil cores and water. The results suggest that the marsh soil contains mixtures of oxidized and reduced uranium. Most of the uranium associates with Fe-oxides/hydroxides and organic matter in the surface soil. The study revealed the impact of wet and dry conditions on the mobility of uranium in the soil within this small-scale environment. Phases of reduced uranium in the marsh soil could be rapidly oxidized upon exposure to oxygen. The laboratory incubation study in my research supports that adding carbon may have little impact on the long-term immobilization of uranium in the environment.



Biogeochemistry, Uranium, Wetland, Geomicrobiology, Elliot Lake, Bioremediation, Natural Attenuation, Anaerobic Respiration