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Spatial-Based Assessment of Heavy Metal Contamination in Agricultural Soils Surrounding a Non-ferrous Metal Smelting Zone

Abstract

This work aimed to assess the degree of anthropogenic influence and severity of heavy metal from a non-ferrous metal smelting industrial zone. The results suggested that anthropogenic inputs played a dominant role in the enrichment of Cu, Zn, Pb, Sb and Cd. These metals showed similar spatial distribution patterns. Multivariate analysis showed strongly significant relationships between Cu–Zn,Cd–Zn, Cd–Sb, Sb, Sb, Cu, Zn, and Pb. Strong relationship was found between Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Sb and organic matter in soil. Risk evaluation results within the soil investigated profile was in the following order: Cd > Sb > Cu > Zn > Pb. Nemerow’s synthetical contamination index revealed that there is substantial ecotoxicological risk among the sampling sites with 8 of 9 of these locations exceeding the Nemerow criteria for seriously impacted sites and another site was close to moderately polluted domain.

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Acknowledgments

This study was supported by the Hebei Province Special Fund for Environmental Protection Research in the Public Interest (2013).

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Correspondence to Shuxuan Liang.

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Liang, S., Li, X., Xu, H. et al. Spatial-Based Assessment of Heavy Metal Contamination in Agricultural Soils Surrounding a Non-ferrous Metal Smelting Zone. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 91, 526–532 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-013-1110-8

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Keywords

  • Heavy metals
  • Soil contamination
  • Non-ferrous metal smelting