GEOCHEMISTRY OF SURFACE WATERS AROUND FOUR HARD-ROCK LITHIUM DEPOSITS IN CENTRAL EUROPE
This study examined three Li-mica and one spodumene deposits in CZE, GER, and Austria, including the Cínovec deposit. A total of 47 surface water samples were collected to analyze whether Li and/or F leaches into the waterways near such deposits in elevated amounts. In the Cínovec and Homolka (CZE) deposits, several water samples are enriched (max of 36 ppb) relative to typical Li concentrations (≤ 20 ppb ) in surface waters, but they do not surpass the EPA-recommended threshold. Three of the ten samples from the Cínovec deposit are above the WHO 1.5 ppm drinking water limit for F (max of 3.8 ppm) and may pose a public health risk. Geochemical inverse modeling as well as saturation-index calculations, both done in PHREEQC, suggest that the Li is derived from zinnwaldite (a Li-mica present in local rocks), F from a combination of zinnwaldite and fluorite, and that Li is scrubbed by clays from the waterways, offering a natural remediation strategy.
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