Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Marine Pollution Bulletin






School of Science / Centre for Marine Ecosystems Research


Comisi´on Interministerial de Ciencia y Tecnología / Generalitat de Catalunya / Government of the Principality of Monaco


Palanques, A., Puig, P., Masqué, P., & Isla, E. (2024). Influence of the Atlantic inflow on trace metal enrichments in sediments and particulate matter of the NW Alboran Sea (SW Mediterranean). Marine Pollution Bulletin, 202, 116403.


Trace metal contents and fluxes in downward particulate matter and dated sediment cores of the NW Alboran Sea are analysed in this study with the aim of assessing the role of the Atlantic inflow on their transport. Increases in Zn, Cu and Pb were detected in downward particulate matter collected by sediment traps after river flooding events and after the Aznalcollar mining spill. Their arrival coincided within the recently estimated time range for river particles discharged into the Gulf of Cádiz to reach the Alboran Sea, indicating that their transfer is enhanced during events of increased river inputs of contaminated particulate matter. This also suggests that the effects of potential tailing dam failures in the Gulf of Cádiz watersheds could reach the Alboran Sea. These trace metals also increased in the sediment cores from the continental rise since the second half of the 19th century, suggesting that contaminated particles have been continuously transferred towards the Mediterranean Sea since that time, when mining concessions and production increased in the SW Iberian Pyrite Belt.



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.