Month/Year of Graduation
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
Geography and Geology
Dr. Kelly Deuerling
This study assesses chemical weathering trends as they relate to glacial retreat. The chemical environment of surfaces exposed to the atmosphere differs significantly from beneath a glacier. As a glacier melts, changes to the biogeochemical processes generate environmental gradients. This study analyzed chemical weathering signals at different distances from a glacial front by comparing the elemental composition of leachate derived from sediments in southeastern Greenland. Samples from proglacial, nonglacial, and moraine locations were weathered in a laboratory setting, and ion chromatography was used to determine the elemental composition of the products. Divergent trends in leachate composition were observed as distance from the glacial front changed. Evidence of gypsum and dolomite weathering was found in moraine sites. Proglacial sites contained higher ionic concentrations overall and did not yield the same weathering signals as moraine sites. Salt compositions also differed as a function of coastal proximity. This research offers a contribution to the scientific body of knowledge regarding the alteration of Earth cycles in response to a changing climate.
Ford, Karoline, "The Impact of Glacial Proximity on the Elemental Composition of Leachate Derived from Sediment Weathering" (2023). Theses/Capstones/Creative Projects. 233.