Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

High-Resolution Atmospheric Lead Pollution during the Roman Period Recorded in Belgian Ombrotrophic Peat Cores

Version 1 : Received: 14 May 2018 / Approved: 15 May 2018 / Online: 15 May 2018 (08:50:44 CEST)
Version 2 : Received: 15 May 2018 / Approved: 22 May 2018 / Online: 22 May 2018 (07:44:10 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Allan, M.; Pinti, D.L.; Ghaleb, B.; Verheyden, S.; Mattielli, N.; Fagel, N. Reconstruction of Atmospheric Lead Pollution During the Roman Period Recorded in Belgian Ombrotrophic Peatlands Cores. Atmosphere 2018, 9, 253. Allan, M.; Pinti, D.L.; Ghaleb, B.; Verheyden, S.; Mattielli, N.; Fagel, N. Reconstruction of Atmospheric Lead Pollution During the Roman Period Recorded in Belgian Ombrotrophic Peatlands Cores. Atmosphere 2018, 9, 253.

Journal reference: Atmosphere 2018, 9, 253
DOI: 10.3390/atmos9070253

Abstract

Two peat cores from two bogs were used to reconstruct high–resolution changes in atmospheric Pb accumulation rate (Pb AR) in Belgium during the Roman period. The two records were compared to assess the reliability of peat cores as archives of atmospheric Pb deposition and to established histories of atmospheric emissions from anthropogenic sources. To address these issues we analyze Pb concentration and isotopes, using ICP-MS, LA-ICP-MS and MC-ICP-MS in two peat sections, spanning 1000 yr each. Lead concentrations in the two cores range from 0.1 to 60 μg g−1, with the maxima between 15 and 60 μg g−1. The average natural background of Pb AR was 0.005± 0.002 mg m-2 yr-1 and the maximum ranges from 0.7 to 1.2 mg m-2 yr-1 between 50 BC and AD 215. The highest Pb AR exceed the pre-Roman period values by a factor of 25-30. Pb isotopic composition indicates that mining and metallurgical activities were the predominant sources of pollution during the Roman period. The Pb AR and chronologies in the Belgian peat cores are consistent with those reported for other continental archives as lake sediments, peat and ice cores.

Subject Areas

atmospheric pollution; Pb accumulation rate; peat geochemistry; roman period; Pb isotopes

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