ORIGINAL RESEARCH
An Influence of Pyrite Oxidation on Generation of Unique Acidic Pit Water: A Case Study, Podwiśniówka Quarry, Holy Cross Mountains (South-Central Poland)
Z. M. Migaszewski1, A. Gałuszka1, P. Pasławski2, E. Starnawska3
 
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1Pedagogical University, Institute of Chemistry, Geochemistry and the Environment Div., 5 Chęcińska St., 25-020 Kielce, Poland 2Central Chemical Laboratory, Polish Geological Institute, 4 Rakowiecka St., 00-975 Warsaw, Poland 3Electron Microscope Laboratory, Polish Geological Institute, 4 Rakowiecka St., 00-975 Warsaw, Poland
 
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2007;16(3):407–421
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ABSTRACT
This report presents an assessment of pyrite weathering on the chemistry of water in the abandoned Podwiśniówka quarry of the Holy Cross Mountains (south-central Poland). This quarry did not operate for ore minerals, but for quartzites. The area of the pit pond enlarges each year generally as a result of an influx of spring snowmelt or heavy rainfall. The water examined reveals a very low pH, varying from 2.27 to 3.57 (with geometric mean value of 2.90), and unusual low concentrations of cations and anions, especially total Fe (2.7–24.0 mg·L-1) and SO42- (55–285 mg·L-1). With regard to its chemistry, this pond is unique compared to similar sites in Poland and even throughout the world. The low pH and element concentrations are attributed to the specific mineralogy of ore and gangue minerals, as well as complex bacterially catalyzed geochemical processes that have encompassed pyrite oxidation and iron oxidation/hydrolysis reactions.
eISSN:2083-5906
ISSN:1230-1485