Dr Barbara Palumbo-Roe

Dr Barbara Palumbo-Roe

Process Geochemist

Location: Keyworth

Tel: 0115 936 3003

E-mail Dr Barbara Palumbo-Roe


  •  2007 – ongoing : Senior Process Geochemist, British Geological Survey, Keyworth
  •  2007 –2010 : Team Leader Abandoned Mine and Contaminated Land Team, British Geological Survey
  •  2000 –2007 : Process Geochemist, British Geological Survey, Keyworth
  •  1999 –2000 : Honorary Researcher, Department of Geology & Petroleum, University of Aberdeen
  •  1997 –1998 : EU Marie Curie Post-doctoral position, The Macaulay Land Use Research Institute, Aberdeen
  •  1993 –1996 : PhD in Geochemistry, University of Palermo, Italy
  •  1987 –1992 : Degree in Geology (1st with distinction), Department of Mineralogy and Petrography, University of Palermo, Italy

Current projects and collaboration

  •  2015 –2019 : SoS RARE NERC-funded consortium on mobility and concentration of the rare earth elements in natural systems (SoSRare)
  •  2013 –2014 : MM-FREE - NERC Catalyst Grant NE/L002361/1- Security of Supply of Mineral Resources Catalyst Grant “Mineral-Microbe interaction role in concentration and Fractionation of Rare Earth Elements”
  •  2013 –2013 : TELLUS Border Project “Determination of stream sediment background concentrations in mineralised catchments impacted by mining using Tellus data from Northern Ireland” (DETI/GSNI)(TELUS BORDER)
  •  2012 – ongoing : IMAGES - EPSRC “Integrated, Market-fit and Affordable Grid-scale Energy Storage” Consortium project (EPSRC Grant EP/K002228/1)(IMAGES )
  •  2015 – ongoing : Arsenic Bioaccessibility in south-west England
  •  2011 –2012 : DEFRA project Normal Background Concentrations of contaminants in soils
  •  2010 –2013 : EU FP7 project EO-MINERS: Earth observation for monitoring and observing environmental and societal impacts of mineral resources exploration and exploitation
  •  2015 – ongoing : Impact of groundwater/surface water interaction on contaminant transport: application to a chromium contaminated site in Glasgow. (see also Clyde Urban Super Project -CUSP)
  •  2015 – ongoing : Determination of stream sediment background concentrations in south-west England

Professional association

  • Member of the Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland

Research interests

  • Biogeochemical cycling of trace elements and inorganic emerging contaminants and their impact on ecosystems and human health, through field observations, experimental studies and geochemical modelling
  • Mine waste: characterisation and environmental impact
  • Biogeochemistry of Rare Earth Elements in low temperature environments
  • Hyporheic zone geochemistry

Commissioned reports

  •  2014 : Palumbo-Roe, B.; Linley, K.; Cameron, D.; Mankelow, J. 2014. Inventory of closed mine waste facilities in Northern Ireland. Phase 2, assessment. Nottingham, UK, British Geological Survey, 58pp. (CR/14/031N)
  •  2012 : Palumbo-Roe, B.; Bearcock, J.; Banks, V.J. 2012. Hydrogeochemical observations to improve site characterisation and remediation of Frongoch Mine, Wales. Nottingham, UK, British Geological Survey, 38pp.
  •  2011 : Palumbo-Roe, B.; Banks, V.J. 2011. Conceptual site model of Makmal gold mine, Kyrgyz Republic. Final report, October 2011. British Geological Survey, 45pp.
  •  2010 : PALUMBO-ROE, B, and COLMAN, T. 2010. The nature of waste associated with closed mines in England and Wales.


  • Experimental geochemistry
  • Geochemical surveys and environmental monitoring
  • Geochemical modelling
  • Mineralogy

Published outputs

Key papers

Rawlins, B.G.; Palumbo-Roe, B.; Gooddy, D.C.; Worrall, F.; Smith, H. 2014. A model of potential carbon dioxide efflux from surface water across England and Wales using headwater stream survey data and landscape predictors. Biogeosciences, 11 (7). 1911-1925.

Ander, E.L.; Johnson, C.C.; Cave, M.R.; Palumbo-Roe, B.; Nathanail, C.P.; Lark, R.M. 2013. Methodology for the determination of normal background concentrations of contaminants in English soil. Science of The Total Environment, 454-455. 604-618.

Palumbo-Roe, B.; Dearden, R. 2013. The hyporheic zone composition of a mining-impacted stream: evidence by multilevel sampling and DGT measurements. Applied Geochemistry, 33. 330-345.

Palumbo-Roe, B.; West, J.M. 2013. Evaluation of the potential impacts of an influx of CO2 on subsurface microbial populations using a thermodynamic approach. Nottingham, UK, British Geological Survey, 22pp. (OR/13/014)

Palumbo-Roe, B.; Wragg, J.; Cave, M.R.; Wagner, D. 2013. Effect of weathering product assemblages on Pb bioaccessibility in mine waste: implications for risk management. Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 20 (11). 7699-7710.

Palumbo-Roe, B.; Wragg, J., and Banks, V.J. 2012. Lead mobilisation in the hyporheic zone and river bank sediments of a contaminated stream: contribution to diffuse pollution. Journal of Soils and Sediments, article in press. pp. 1-8 –DOI: 10.1007/s11368-012-0552-7

BANKS, V J, and PALUMBO-ROE, B. 2010. Synoptic monitoring as an approach to discriminating between point and diffuse source contributions to zinc loads in mining impacted catchments. Journal of Environmental Monitoring, Vol. 12, 1684–1698.

PALUMBO-ROE, B, BANKS, V, CHENERY, S, and WEISS, D. 2010. Tracing sources and fate of zinc in a mining-impacted river catchment: insights from flow measurements, synoptic sampling, and zinc isotopes.International Mine Water Association. WOLKERSDORFER, C, and FREUND, A. Sidney, NS, CBU Press 383–387.

PALUMBO-ROE, B, KLINCK, B, BANKS, V and QUIGLEY, S. 2008. Prediction of the long-term performance of abandoned lead zinc mine tailings in a Welsh catchment. Journal of Geochemical Exploration. Vol. 100, 169–181.

PALUMBO-ROE, B, KLINCK, B A, and CAVE, M R. 2007. Arsenic speciation and mobility in mine wastes from a copper- arsenic mine in Devon, UK: A SEM, XAS, sequential chemical extraction study. 441–472 in Arsenic in Soil and Groundwater Environment. Bhattacharya, Mukherjee, Bundschuh, Zevenhoven and Loeppert (Editors). Trace Metals and Other Contaminants in the Environment, Amsterdam, Elsevier.

PALUMBO-ROE, B, and KLINCK, B A. 2007. Bioaccessibility of Arsenic in Mine Waste Contaminated Soils: a Case Study from an Abandoned Arsenic Mine in SW England (UK). Journal of Environmental Science and Health, Part A, Vol. 42, 1251–1261.

KLINCK, B A, PALUMBO, B, CAVE, M, and WRAGG, J. 2005. Arsenic dispersal and bioaccessibility in mine contaminated soils: a case study from an abandoned arsenic mine in Devon, UK. British Geological Survey Research Report, RR/04/03.