Contamination in an Arctic Environment: Abiotic and Biotic Impacts of Local Pollution
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- Institutt for biologi 
The aim of the present investigation was to evaluate whether Longyearbyen coal power plant and Gruve 6 have a significant impact on the chemical element distribution in soil and terrestrial biota in Adventdalen. Soil, mosses, insects/spiders and feathers from snow bunting nestlings (Plectrophenax nivalis) were sampled from 18 stations located along a transect extending from Longyearbyen coal power plant to Gruve 6. Subsequently, analyses of 24 elements (Al, As, B, Be, Cd, Co, Cr, Fe, Hg, La, Mn, Mo, Ni, Pb, S, Sb, Se, Sm, Th, U, V, Y, Yb, Zn) were carried out by HR-ICP-MS. The results indicate that there were a strong positive relationship (p < 0.002) between distance from the coal power plant and concentration of Cd in insects/spiders and Mo in soil. The positive correlations implies that Gruve 6 and/or Gruve 7 constitute main point sources of Cd and Mo emission to the transect. However, due to differences in sample material, e.g. differences in species composition, it might be problematic to compare the stations. Moreover, due to multiple pollution sources and differences in topography it might be difficult to detect the isolated impact of the coal power plant and Gruve 6 on the transect. Local natural sources, in addition to local anthropogenic sources such as cruise ships, snowmobiles, air and road traffic, landfill, cableway station, the historically German weather station (Bansø) and cabins, might have had an impact on the chemical element distribution at the different stations.