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A contribution to IUGS/IAGC Global Geochemical Baselines

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Salminen R.1 (Chief-editor), Batista M.J.2, Bidovec M.3, Demetriades A.4, De Vivo B.5, De Vos W.6, Duris M.7,Gilucis A.8, Gregorauskiene V.9, Halamic J.10, Heitzmann P.11, Lima A.5, Jordan G.12, Klaver G.13, Klein P.14, Lis J.15, Locutura J.16, Marsina K.17, Mazreku A.18, O'Connor P.J.19, Olsson S.Ĺ.20, Ottesen R.-T.21, Petersell V.22, Plant J.A.23, Reeder S.23, Salpeteur I.24, Sandström H.1, Siewers U.25, Steenfelt A.26, Tarvainen T.1 2005.
Geochemical Atlas of Europe. Part 1 - Background Information, Methodology and Maps.

The IUGS/IAGC Global Geochemical Baselines Programme aims to establish a global geochemical reference baseline for >60 determinants in a range of media for environmental and other applications. The European contribution to the programme has been carried out by government institutions from 26 countries under the auspices of the Forum of European Geological Surveys (FOREGS) The main objectives of this European survey were: 1) to apply standardised methods of sampling, chemical analysis and data management to prepare a geochemical baseline across Europe; and 2) to use this reference network to level national baseline datasets.

Samples of stream water, stream sediment and three types of soil (organic top layer, minerogenic top and sub soil) have been collected at 900 stations, each representing a catchment area of 100 km2, corresponding to a sampling density of about one sample per 4700 km2. In addition, the uppermost 25 cm of floodplain sediment was sampled from 790 sites each representing a catchment area of 1000 km2.

All soil and sediment samples were prepared at the same laboratory, and all samples of particular sample types were analysed by the same method at the same laboratory. More than 50 elements, both total and aqua regia extractable concentrations, and other parameters (such as pH and grain size) were determined on the <2 mm grain size fraction of minerogenic samples, and total concentrations of organic soil samples were measured after using a strong acid digestion. Nine laboratories of European geological surveys carried out the analytical work.

Altogether, 360 geochemical maps showing the distribution of elements across Europe have been prepared. All the results and field observations are organised in a common database and the maps are published as a Geochemical Atlas of Europe. All the sampling sites were photographed and this photo archive is also available. Samples have been archived in the Slovak Republic for possible future use.

Initial results show that the distribution patterns of both water and solid samples are related to such factors as large-scale tectonic provinces, geochemical variation of large lithological units, extension of the Weichselian glaciation, and contamination reflecting industrialized areas and regions of intensive agriculture.

Key words (GeoRef Thesaurus, AGI): geochemical surveys, baseline studies, soils, sediments, stream water, sampling, sample preparation, chemical analysis, geochemical maps, atlas, areal geology, Europe

1Geological Survey of Finland, P.O.Box 96, FI-02151 Espoo, Finland;

2Geological Survey of Portugal, Estrada da Portela - Zambujal, Apartado 7586, 2720 Alfragide, Portugal;

3Geological Survey of Slovenia, 1001 Ljubljana, Slovenia;

4Institute of Geology and Mineral Exploration, 70 Messoghion Street, GR-11527 Athens, Greece;

5Departimento Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Universita' di Napoli "Federico II", Via Mezzocannone 8, 80138 Napoli, Italy;

6Geological Survey of Belgium, Jennerstraat 13 B-1000 Brussels, Belgium;

7Czech Geological Survey, Klárov 131/3, CS-11821 Praha 1, Czech Republic;

8State Geological Survey of Latvia, Eksporta iela 5, Riga, LV-1010, Latvia;

9Geological Survey of Lithuania, Konarskio 35, Vilnius, LT-03123, Lithuania;

10Institute of Geology, Croatia, Sachsova 2, HR-10000, Zagreb, Croatia;

11Swiss National Hydrological and Geological Survey, CH-3003 Berne, Switzerland;

12Hungarian Geological Institute, P.O. Box 106, H-1442 Budapest, Hungary;

13TNO-NITG, The Netherlands, P.O. Box 80015, 8508 TA Utrecht, The Netherlands;

14Geological Survey of Austria, Rasumofskygasse 23 Postfach 127 A-1031 Wien, Austria;

15Polish Geological Institute, PL-00 975 Warszawa, Poland;

16Geological Survey of Spain, 23 Rios Rosas, ITGE-E 28003 Madrid, Spain;

17Geological Survey of Slovak Republic, Mlynská dol. 1, SK-81704 Bratislava, Slovak Republic;

18Center of Civil Geology, Rs. S. Frasheri, Nr. 31 Tirana Albania;

19Geological Survey of Ireland, Beggars Bush, Haddington Road, Dublin 4, Ireland;

20Geological Survey of Sweden, P.O.Box 670, S-751 28 Uppsala, Sweden;

21Geological Survey of Norway, 7491 Trondheim, Norway;

22Geological Survey of Estonia, Kadaka tee 80/82, Tallinn, EE-0026, Estonia;

23British Geological Survey, Kingsley Dunham Center, Keyworth, Nottingham NG12 5GG, United Kingdom;

24Geological Survey of France, BP 6009, 45060 Orléans Cedex, France;

25Bundesanstalt fur Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe, Postfach 510153, D-30631 Hannover, Germany;

26Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), Řster Voldgade 10, DK-1350 Copenhagen K, Denmark

Reijo Salminen
Geological Survey of Finland
P.O.Box 96


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