SREL Reprint #0369




NTA and Mercury in Artificial Stream Systems

H. J. Kania and R. J. Beyers



Studies were conducted in six artificial stream channels to determine the fate of NTA (nitrilotriacetic acid, trisodium salt) added with and without sodium phosphate to these systems.  In the two hour period required for a given water mass to traverse the channels, there was no appreciable removal of NTA or phosphate, even after a one month period of continuous input.  Visible biological differences were noted between the various treatments.  These differences may have been a result of pH alteration caused by the addition of the trisodium phosphate and NTA.

In anticipation of along term program involving the fate of mercury and possible mercury-NTA interactions, several modifications were incorporated into the artificial stream system.  Based on the results of laboratory studies, a mercury removal system utilizing shredded rubber tires as obtained from commercial tire recapping firms, was constructed.  Laboratory studies indicated that NTA did not influence the uptake of mercuric ion by the rubber.  The presence of NTA did alter the uptake pattern and final concentration by mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis.

This report was submitted in fulfillment of Grant 16050 GQQ, Program Element 1BA023, to the University of Georgia under the sponsorship of the Environmental Protection Agency.


SREL Reprint #0369

Kania, H.J. and R.J. Beyers. 1974. NTA and mercury in artificial stream systems. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. EPA 660/3 73 025.

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