Environmental impact of heavy metals on soils and plants in the surroundings of a vehicles scrapyard
Keywords:Contamination, Heavy metals, Vehicles scrapyard, Solid particles, Bioavailability
The contaminant impact of cadmium, chromium, copper, nickel, lead and zinc on soils and vegetation in the surroundings of a scrapyard of discarded vehicles, taken at several distances of the contaminant source, is evaluated and compared with control samples free of contamination. The total metal contents of these elements in the soils and vegetation samples are determined by ICP-AES and their presence in soils is detected by particles analysis with SEM-EDXRA. The contents of the affected soils are remarkably higher than the ones of a control sample for the all elements and gradually decrease from the contaminant source. These contents in plants are also relevantly higher than the values of the control sample, and are especially high for the aereal parts. This remarkable contamination, moreover the great retention capacity of these soils, due to their edaphical characteristics, and the presence of a great quantity of not-mineral particles, may indicate that the probable access path of the metal contaminants to the plants could be the atmospherical dispersion of the particles generated by the scrapyard activities (burning and transformation of the vehicles scrap).
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