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Hexavalent Chromium Contamination in Groundwaters of Thiva Basin, Central Greece

Abstract

There is an increasing concern regarding elevated levels of Cr(VI) in the environment due to its higher mobility and toxicity compared to the trivalent form. Anomalous hexavalent chromium concentrations (up to 212 μg/L) were determined in irrigated groundwaters from the wider area of Thiva Basin (central Greece), frequently exceeding the permissible limit for human consumption (50 μg/L for total Cr). Based on the spatial distribution of Cr(VI) values, two groups of groundwater samples were distinguished, possibly reflecting different natural and/or anthropogenic factors that govern the levels of contamination. The first group is spatially located northwards of Thiva town and is consisted of concentrations that range from 13 to 212 μg/L (median 58 μg/L), while the second group is located near Mouriki village and Cr(VI) values range from <9 to 14 μg/L. The Cr(VI) chemical anomalies represent an important social problem because the agricultural products of this region are a major vegetable supply for Greece, bringing up the urgent need to evaluate the health effects associated with Cr(VI) exposure by ingesting the potentially contaminated foods.

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Correspondence to Efstratios Kelepertzis.

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Tziritis, E., Kelepertzis, E., Korres, G. et al. Hexavalent Chromium Contamination in Groundwaters of Thiva Basin, Central Greece. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 89, 1073–1077 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-012-0831-4

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Keywords

  • Hexavalent chromium
  • Groundwater contamination
  • Thiva
  • Central Greece