Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 20, Issue 7, pp 5067–5075 | Cite as

Metal fractionation in soils and assessment of environmental contamination in Vallecamonica, Italy

  • L. Borgese
  • S. Federici
  • A. Zacco
  • A. Gianoncelli
  • L. Rizzo
  • D. R. Smith
  • F. Donna
  • R. Lucchini
  • L. E. Depero
  • E. Bontempi
Research Article

Abstract

Metal contamination was investigated in soils of the Vallecamonica, an area in the northern part of the Brescia province (Italy), where ferroalloy industries were active for a century until 2001. The extent in which emissions from ferroalloy plants affected metal concentration in soils is not known in this area. In this study, the geogenic and/or anthropogenic origin of metals in soils were estimated. A modified Community Bureau of Reference sequential chemical extraction method followed by inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES) analyses were employed to evaluate the potential bioavailability of Al, Cd, Mn, Fe, Cr, Zn, and Pb in soils. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used to assess the relationships among metal sources in soil samples from different locations. This approach allowed distinguishing of different loadings and mobility of metals in soils collected in different areas. Results showed high concentrations and readily extractability of Mn in the Vallecamonica soils, which may suggest potential bioavailability for organisms and may create an environmental risk and potential health risk of human exposure.

Keywords

Soil fractionation Heavy metals Principal component analysis (PCA) 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Borgese
    • 1
  • S. Federici
    • 1
  • A. Zacco
    • 1
  • A. Gianoncelli
    • 1
  • L. Rizzo
    • 1
  • D. R. Smith
    • 2
  • F. Donna
    • 3
  • R. Lucchini
    • 3
  • L. E. Depero
    • 1
  • E. Bontempi
    • 1
  1. 1.INSTM and Chemistry for Technologies LaboratoryUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly
  2. 2.Microbiology and Environmental ToxicologyUniversity of CaliforniaSanta CruzUSA
  3. 3.Institute of Occupational HealthUniversity of BresciaBresciaItaly

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