Atmospheric Iodine (127I and 129I) Record in Spruce Tree Rings in the Northeast Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

Xue Zhao, Xiaolin Hou*, Weijian Zhou

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Atmospheric iodine isotopes have a significant impact on climate change and human health. However, the sources, transport pathways, and transfer processes of atmospheric iodine are still not well understood. Tree rings of spruce collected from the east edge of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau were analyzed for iodine isotopes (127I and 129I). The results show that the levels and temporal variation of atmospheric iodine were well recorded in the spruce tree rings, and stable iodine concentrations in tree rings increased three times from 1960 to 2015, reflecting the increased releases of iodine to the atmosphere in the past decades due to human activities. The anthropogenic 129I in the tree rings represents the record of the human nuclear activities in the past 55 years. The sources and the transport pathways of radioactive substances could be extracted from the 129I recorded in the tree rings in the Qinghai-Tibet region. They are fallout from the global nuclear weapons tests in 1961-1962, releases of the Chinese atmospheric nuclear weapons tests in 1964-1980 transported through the tropospheric northwest wind, the releases of the Chernobyl accident dispersed through westerlies, and the continuous air releases before 1997 and the re-emission of marine discharges from the European nuclear fuel reprocessing plants transported through westerlies.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume53
Issue number15
Pages (from-to)8706-8714
ISSN0013-936X
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Cite this

@article{7f332a10c519461bb67c330c244d2721,
title = "Atmospheric Iodine (127I and 129I) Record in Spruce Tree Rings in the Northeast Qinghai-Tibet Plateau",
abstract = "Atmospheric iodine isotopes have a significant impact on climate change and human health. However, the sources, transport pathways, and transfer processes of atmospheric iodine are still not well understood. Tree rings of spruce collected from the east edge of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau were analyzed for iodine isotopes (127I and 129I). The results show that the levels and temporal variation of atmospheric iodine were well recorded in the spruce tree rings, and stable iodine concentrations in tree rings increased three times from 1960 to 2015, reflecting the increased releases of iodine to the atmosphere in the past decades due to human activities. The anthropogenic 129I in the tree rings represents the record of the human nuclear activities in the past 55 years. The sources and the transport pathways of radioactive substances could be extracted from the 129I recorded in the tree rings in the Qinghai-Tibet region. They are fallout from the global nuclear weapons tests in 1961-1962, releases of the Chinese atmospheric nuclear weapons tests in 1964-1980 transported through the tropospheric northwest wind, the releases of the Chernobyl accident dispersed through westerlies, and the continuous air releases before 1997 and the re-emission of marine discharges from the European nuclear fuel reprocessing plants transported through westerlies.",
author = "Xue Zhao and Xiaolin Hou and Weijian Zhou",
year = "2019",
doi = "10.1021/acs.est.9b01160",
language = "English",
volume = "53",
pages = "8706--8714",
journal = "Environmental Science & Technology (Washington)",
issn = "0013-936X",
publisher = "American Chemical Society",
number = "15",

}

Atmospheric Iodine (127I and 129I) Record in Spruce Tree Rings in the Northeast Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. / Zhao, Xue; Hou, Xiaolin; Zhou, Weijian.

In: Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 53, No. 15, 2019, p. 8706-8714.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Atmospheric Iodine (127I and 129I) Record in Spruce Tree Rings in the Northeast Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

AU - Zhao, Xue

AU - Hou, Xiaolin

AU - Zhou, Weijian

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - Atmospheric iodine isotopes have a significant impact on climate change and human health. However, the sources, transport pathways, and transfer processes of atmospheric iodine are still not well understood. Tree rings of spruce collected from the east edge of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau were analyzed for iodine isotopes (127I and 129I). The results show that the levels and temporal variation of atmospheric iodine were well recorded in the spruce tree rings, and stable iodine concentrations in tree rings increased three times from 1960 to 2015, reflecting the increased releases of iodine to the atmosphere in the past decades due to human activities. The anthropogenic 129I in the tree rings represents the record of the human nuclear activities in the past 55 years. The sources and the transport pathways of radioactive substances could be extracted from the 129I recorded in the tree rings in the Qinghai-Tibet region. They are fallout from the global nuclear weapons tests in 1961-1962, releases of the Chinese atmospheric nuclear weapons tests in 1964-1980 transported through the tropospheric northwest wind, the releases of the Chernobyl accident dispersed through westerlies, and the continuous air releases before 1997 and the re-emission of marine discharges from the European nuclear fuel reprocessing plants transported through westerlies.

AB - Atmospheric iodine isotopes have a significant impact on climate change and human health. However, the sources, transport pathways, and transfer processes of atmospheric iodine are still not well understood. Tree rings of spruce collected from the east edge of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau were analyzed for iodine isotopes (127I and 129I). The results show that the levels and temporal variation of atmospheric iodine were well recorded in the spruce tree rings, and stable iodine concentrations in tree rings increased three times from 1960 to 2015, reflecting the increased releases of iodine to the atmosphere in the past decades due to human activities. The anthropogenic 129I in the tree rings represents the record of the human nuclear activities in the past 55 years. The sources and the transport pathways of radioactive substances could be extracted from the 129I recorded in the tree rings in the Qinghai-Tibet region. They are fallout from the global nuclear weapons tests in 1961-1962, releases of the Chinese atmospheric nuclear weapons tests in 1964-1980 transported through the tropospheric northwest wind, the releases of the Chernobyl accident dispersed through westerlies, and the continuous air releases before 1997 and the re-emission of marine discharges from the European nuclear fuel reprocessing plants transported through westerlies.

U2 - 10.1021/acs.est.9b01160

DO - 10.1021/acs.est.9b01160

M3 - Journal article

VL - 53

SP - 8706

EP - 8714

JO - Environmental Science & Technology (Washington)

JF - Environmental Science & Technology (Washington)

SN - 0013-936X

IS - 15

ER -