Doctoral Dissertations


"Field and laboratory investigations of acid mine drainage (AMD) contaminated and uncontaminated waters were conducted in order to determine and model processes and reaction mechanisms that control dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) transformation and shifts in isotope ratio of DIC (Δ¹³CDIC). The results show that AMD caused variable pH changes, overall decreases in Fe²⁺, alkalinity, and DIC, and increases in (Δ¹³CDIC) in receiving streams. AMD caused more than 50 to > 98% seasonal DIC loss in stream water through CO₂ degassing. High DIC losses corresponded to high Fe²⁺ and lower or no HCO₃⁻ in the water samples, because H⁺ from AMD dehydrates HCO₃⁻. HCO₃⁻ deydration [sic] and DIC loss resulted in enrichment of ¹³C of residual DIC. Lower ¹³C enrichment was when protons were in excess of HCO₃⁻, whereas samples with excess HCO₃⁻ and limited proton content showed higher enrichment. DIC loss mechanisms for AMD-contaminated water could be modeled by first order reaction kinetics while accompanying shifts in Δ¹³C could be modeled as a Rayleigh type distillation whereby isotope fractionation was constant and occurring in an "equilibrium closed system". Coupling metal chemistry with DIC and (Δ¹³CDIC) in AMD impacted groundwater and streams, suggest that hydrolysable metals control DIC production and speciation. This study also suggest that relatively high amounts of DIC are lost from AMD impacted streams, which may over the long term have implications for local, regional, or even global carbon cycling. The results of this study are important for interpreting DIC transformation, carbon isotope fractionation, and in predicting the fate of DIC in AMD impacted streams"--Abstract, page iv.


Atekwana, Eliot A.

Committee Member(s)

Wronkiewicz, David J.
Niyogi, Dev
Krishnamurthy, K.
Whitworth, T. M. (Thomas M.)


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Degree Name

Ph. D. in Geology and Geophysics


National Science Foundation (U.S.)


This research was funded by the US National Science Foundation Award # EAR-0510954


University of Missouri--Rolla

Publication Date

Fall 2007

Journal article titles appearing in thesis/dissertation

  • Effects of acid mine drainage on inorganic carbon and stable carbon isotopes in receiving streams
  • Modeling dissolved inorganic carbon evolution and stable carbon isotope fractionation in acid mine drainage impacted streams: insights from a laboratory study
  • Chemical interaction and evolution of metals, dissolved inorganic carbon, and stable carbon isotopes in groundwater and streams affected by variable acid mine drainage contamination


xii, 133 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references.


© 2007 Ernest Wirnkor Fonyuy, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Acid mine drainage -- Environmental aspects
Carbon -- Isotopes
Carbon cycle (Biogeochemistry)
Inorganic compounds -- Environmental aspects
Isotope geology

Thesis Number

T 9792

Print OCLC #


Electronic OCLC #


Link to Catalog Record

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