Heavy metal contamination in urban surface sediments: sources, distribution, contamination control, and remediation

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Urban road sediments act as large basins for heavy metal contaminants produced as a result of natural processes and anthropogenic activities. This study is aimed at reviewing research over recent decades on heavy metal contamination in different cities around the world. The study reviews literature from Google Scholar, Web of Science, and Scopus journal publications. Cr, Cu, Pb, Zn, Ni, and Cd levels vary from one city to another. Based on the collected results, the pollution level and geoaccumulation index are estimated in each city. The levels of pollution in these cities range from low to extremely high, depending on the sources of pollution at each site (geogenic and anthropogenic sources, etc.) and factors like the distribution of industrial activities, population, and traffic emissions. This review shows that the development of modern cities and rapid urbanization are the major causes of heavy metal contamination in the environment. The contamination of the urban environment has different sources, both natural and anthropogenic in character. Solving the problem of heavy metal contamination in the urban environment requires the use of different techniques such as urban road control treatment and soil remediation.

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Correspondence to Mohamed Y. Hanfi.

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Hanfi, M.Y., Mostafa, M.Y.A. & Zhukovsky, M.V. Heavy metal contamination in urban surface sediments: sources, distribution, contamination control, and remediation. Environ Monit Assess 192, 32 (2020).

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  • Heavy metal
  • Urban geoaccumulation
  • Contamination
  • Sediment
  • Remediation