Dynamic modelling of atmospherically-deposited Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb in Pennine catchments (northern England)

E. Tipping, J. J. Rothwell, L. Shotbolt, A. J. Lawlor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Simulation modelling with CHUM-AM was carried out to investigate the accumulation and release of atmospherically-deposited heavy metals (Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb) in six moorland catchments, five with organic-rich soils, one with calcareous brown earths, in the Pennine chain of northern England. The model considers two soil layers and a third layer of weathering mineral matter, and operates on a yearly timestep, driven by deposition scenarios covering the period 1400-2010. The principal processes controlling heavy metals are competitive solid-solution partitioning of solutes, chemical interactions in solution, and chemical weathering. Agreement between observed and simulated soil metal pools and surface water concentrations for recent years was generally satisfactory, the results confirming that most contemporary soil metal is from atmospheric pollution. Metals in catchments with organic-rich soils show some mobility, especially under more acid conditions, but the calcareous mineral soils have retained nearly all anthropogenic metal inputs. Complexation by dissolved organic matter and co-transport accounts for up to 80% of the Cu in surface waters. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1521-1529
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2010


  • Atmospheric deposition
  • Catchment
  • Heavy metals
  • Modelling
  • Soil organic matter
  • Weathering


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