, Volume 22, Issue 3, pp 253-262

Environmental geochemistry of heavy metal contaminants in soil and stream sediment in Panzhihua mining and smelting area, Southwestern China

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Mining and smelting activities are the main causes for the increasing pollution of heavy metals in soil, water body and stream sediment. An environmental geochemical investigation was carried out in and around the Panzhihua mining and smelting area to determine the extent of chemical contamination in soil and sediment. The main objective of this study was to investigate the environmental geochemistry of Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Cu, Pb, Zn and As in soil and sediment and to assess the degree of pollution in the study area. The data of heavy metal concentrations reveal that soils and sediments in the area have been slightly contaminated. Geochemical maps of Igeo of each heavy metal show that the contaminated sites are located in V-Timagnetite sloping and smelting, gangues dam. The pollution sources of the selected elements come mainly from dusts resultant from mining activities and other three-waste-effluents. The area needs to be monitored regularly for trace metal, especially heavy metal enrichment.

This study was granted by China Postdoctoral Science Foundation and China Land and Resources Ministry Special Project.