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Scientific article
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Less-studied TCE: are their environmental concentrations increasing due to their use in new technologies?

Published inChemosphere, vol. 182, p. 605-616
Publication date2017
Abstract

The possible environmental impact of the recent increase in use of a group of technology-critical elements (Nb, Ta, Ga, In, Ge and Te) is analysed by reviewing published concentration profiles in environmental archives (ice cores, ombrotrophic peat bogs, freshwater sediments and moss surveys) and evaluating temporal trends in surface waters. No increase has so far been recorded. The low potential direct emissions of these elements, resulting from their absolute low production levels, make it unlikely that the increasing use of these elements in modern technology has any noticeable effect on their environmental concentrations on a global scale. This holds particularly true for those of these elements that are probably emitted in relatively high amounts from other human activities (i.e., coal combustion and non-ferrous smelting), such as In, the most studied element of the group.

Citation (ISO format)
FILELLA, Montserrat, RODRÍGUEZ-MURILLO, J.C. Less-studied TCE: are their environmental concentrations increasing due to their use in new technologies? In: Chemosphere, 2017, vol. 182, p. 605–616. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2017.05.024
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