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The influence of rivers on the geochemistry of shelf sediments, southwestern coast of India

Title:The influence of rivers on the geochemistry of shelf sediments, southwestern coast of India
Authors:Manjunatha B.R. and Shankar R.
Publication:Environmental Geology / Springer-Verlag
Enumeration:Vol. 31, No.s 1-2 , pp. 107 - 116
Abstract:Geochemical and magnetic susceptibility studies of shelf sediments off Mangalore were carried out to understand the influence of rivers on sediment geochemistry, to study the elemental distribution patterns, and to evaluate the importance of the shelf as a source/sink for base metals. The contents of Cu, Pb, Mn, Fe and Al in the surficial sediments are lower by factors of 1.6-5.6, except Ca which is higher by a factor of 3.4 in relation to riverine suspended particulate matter (SPM). This is due to the seaward decrease of terrigenous influx which is reflected in the offshore protrusion of contours of Al, Fe, Cu, Zn, Ni and magnetic susceptibility values, particularly off Netravati and Gurpur rivers. Lower Mn content is also due to its remobilization from the anoxic-sulphidic shelf sediments. In contrast to the elements mentioned above, Ca increases seaward, suggesting that it is biogenic. The enrichment factor (EF) indicates that the surficial sediments are depleted in Cu, Zn and Mn compared to average shale and other anoxic sediments, and marginally enriched with Ni, Co, and Pb in relation to the average shale. However, a comparison between the EF of SPM of Netravati-Gurpur rivers in the hinterland and surficial sediments indicates that the latter are depleted in Mn and Co, but enriched with Ni, Pb, and Fe, thereby suggesting a source and a sink for the former and latter elements, respectively, to the Arabian Sea.

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