Assessment of Heavy Metal Pollution of the Snow Cover of the Severodvinsk Industrial District (NW Russia)

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 N. Laverov Federal Centre for Integrated Arctic Research of Russian Academy of Sciences, 109 Severnoj Dviny Emb., P.O.Box 163000, Arkhangelsk, Russia

2 Core Facility Center ‘Arktika’, Northern (Arctic) Federal University named after M.V. Lomonosov, 17 Northern Dvina Emb., P.O.Box 163002, Arkhangelsk, Russia


Severodvinsk city is the largest industrial center for the construction and repair of naval vessels in the NW Russia. The purpose of the presented study was to identify the main sources of pollution of the Severodvinsk industrial region and assess the ecological situation based on analysis of toxic metals in water and snow. Heavy metals content in water, melt snow filtrate and solid residue was measured using ICP-MS. On the urban area, there were high concentrations of Fe (up to 2843 MPC) in soluble form of snow, Al (up to 4680 MPC), Fe (up to 2807 MPC), Ni (up to 66.5 MPC), Pb (up to 44.7 MPC), Cd (up to 43.3 MPC), Cr (up to 43.2 MPC), Mn (up to 13.3 MPC), Co (up to 7.3 MPC), and As (up to 3.4 MPC) in insoluble form of snow, Fe (up to 56213 MPC) in water from wells. There were high values of mineralization (598 mg/L) and low pH values (to 5.21) in sites most susceptible to anthropogenic pollution. Statistical analysis showed that most of the metals in snow cover were linked with each other by strong correlation (r>0.9). Calculation of toxicological indices HMEI, HMPI, HMTL, HI and CR showed extremely high and dangerous for public health level of heavy metal pollution in the Severodvinsk industrial district. Studied radiation parameters of water from wells were within acceptable limits. Results obtained indicate the need to change the type of fuel in thermal power plant and reduce toxic emissions from the shipbuilding enterprises.


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