Long-term geochemical monitoring of the soil cover in the impact zone of diamond mining enterprises: a case study in the Nakyn kimberlite field, Russia

Environ Monit Assess. 2021 May 12;193(6):337. doi: 10.1007/s10661-021-09087-x.


The most severe disturbance of the earth's surface occurs when the open-cut method of mineral deposits mining is used. The geoecological situation was assessed based on the nature of the soil cover based on the example of an industrial site of a diamond mining and processing plant located in the permafrost zone. During the period from 2007 to 2018, the soil cover of the industrial site is characterized by polyelement contamination. In the surface, soil horizons were an increase in the concentrations of mobile forms of Mn, Zn, Cd, Cr, Co, and Ni. It is identified that AO, ABcr, and CR are the accumulation horizons if the soil profile is preserved. Mobile forms Mn, Zn, Ni, Cr, Co, and As can migrate along with the soil profile to a depth of 40-50 cm depending on the amount of soil organic matter, the degree of its decomposition, and the scale of the cryoturbation. Research in 2018 allowed us to localize and confirm the increase in the area of contamination of the industrial site. Areas with an extremely dangerous category of soil cover contamination increased by 3 times compared to 2014. The results obtained are the basis for a more detailed study of the horizons of geochemical accumulation and the creation of artificial geochemical barriers with the development of technologies for the subsequent extraction of useful components.

Keywords: Diamond mining quarries; Heavy metals; Kimberlite pipes; Soil contamination; Trace metals; Western Yakutia.

MeSH terms

  • Diamond
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Metals, Heavy* / analysis
  • Russia
  • Soil
  • Soil Pollutants* / analysis


  • Metals, Heavy
  • Soil
  • Soil Pollutants
  • Diamond