The sudden and catastrophic, or slow and continuous, release at surface of naturally occurring toxic gases like CO2, H2S and Rn poses a serious health risk to people living in geologically active regions. A detailed geochemical survey was carried out in an area of about 4 km2 in the Ciampino and Marino districts, whereby a total of 274 soil-gas samples were collected and analysed for more than 10 major and trace gas species. Data were then processed using both statistical and geostatistical methods, and the resulting maps were examined in order to highlight areas of elevated risk. General trends of elevated CO2 and Rn concentrations imply the presence of preferential pathways (i.e. faults and fractures) along which deep gases are able to migrate towards the surface. The CO2 and Rn anomalous trends often correspond to and are usually elongated parallel to the Apennine mountain range, the controlling structural feature in central Italy. Because of this fundamental anisotropy in the factors controlling the soil-gas distribution, it was found that a geostatistical approach using variogramanalysis allowed for a better interpretation of the data. With regard to the health risk to local inhabitants, it was found that although some high risk areas had been zoned as parkland, others had been heavily developed for residential purposes. For example, many new houses were found to have been built on ground which has soil-gas CO2 concentrations of more than 70% and radon values of more than 250 kBq m33. It is recommended that land-use planners incorporate soil-gas and/or gas flux measurements in environmental assessments in areas of possible risk (i.e. volcanic or structurally active areas).
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|Titolo:||Carbon Dioxide and Radon Gas Hazard at the Alban Hill Area (Central Italy).|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2003|
|Appartiene alla tipologia:||01a Articolo in rivista|