Sources of Hydrogen Sulfide in Groundwater on Reclaimed Land

by Cathryn O'Sullivan, Ph.D. Candidate; Dept. of Environmental Engineering, Univ. of Queensland, Brisbane, Qld 4072, Australia., cathryno@cheque.uq.edu.au,
William Clarke, (corresponding author), Senior Lecturer; Dept. of Environmental Engineering, Univ. of Queensland, Brisbane, Qld 4072, Australia, billc@cheque.uq.edu.au,
David Lockington, Head; Dept. of Environmental Engineering, Univ. of Queensland, Brisbane, Qld 4072, Australia., d.lockington@mailbox.uq.edu.au,


Serial Information: Issue 3, Pg. 471-477


Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: Fisherman Islands is an area of reclaimed land at the mouth of the Brisbane River in Queensland, Australia. Ongoing groundwater monitoring has found elevated concentrations of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) in the groundwater on the island. The presence of H2S on Fisherman Islands is of concern because of its toxic nature, the potential for acid sulfate soil formation, and its noxious odor. The aim of this study was to identify the sources of H2S within the groundwater on Fisherman Islands. It was hypothesized that the H2S is being formed by sulfate reducing bacteria acting on sulfate from seawater, rather than the introduction of sulfide with the dredge sediments. Groundwater and soil samples were collected and analyzed for sulfide, sulfate, and organic carbon contents. Elevated concentrations of sulfides coincide with elevated concentrations of sulfate in the groundwater and elevated concentrations of organic carbon in the sediments, supporting the hypothesis that sulfide formation is the result of heterotrophic, sulfate reducing organisms.

Subject Headings: Land reclamation | Groundwater | Sulfides | Sulfates | Water reclamation | Sediment | Islands | Carbon compounds | Soil analysis | Australia | Queensland

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