Volatilization of metals from a landfill site - Generation and immobilization of volatile species of tin, antimony, bismuth, mercury, arsenic, and tellurium on a municipal waste deposit in Delta, British Columbia

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In a landfill environment, many mainly main group elements, form volatile organometallic compounds (VMCs). This chapter focuses on the speciation of volatile metal compounds generated in a municipal waste deposit in Delta British Columbia, Canada. Mostly permethylated compounds of Sri, Bi, As, Sb, Se, Hg, and Te have been identified. When landfill gases percolated through the water column of a wetland, water-soluble polar organometallic compounds were identified in the water column as the degradation products of the volatile metal compounds. However, this effect is only marginal since the concentration of the volatile metal compounds above the wetland is not significantly different from the landfill gases in the gas wells in which landfill gas is collected. Stability tests on 12 different volatile species of arsenic, tin and antimony suggests that these compounds have an atmospheric half life, which allows them to volatilize from landfill sites and disperse in their vicinities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-140
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican Chemical Society, Symposium Series
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2002


  • AIR
  • MS

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