Spatial Distribution and Characterization of Some Toxic Metals and Lithogenic Elements in Topsoil and Subsoil from Copper Mine Environs

Biljana Balabanova; Traj?e Stafilov; Robert ?ajn; Katerina Ba?eva
Monitoring using soil samples (topsoil-TS and subsoil-SS) was conducted in area where copper minerals are intensively exploited. Characterization was conducted based on 18 elements: Al, As, Ba, Ca, Cr, Cu, Ga, Li, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Ni, Pb, Sr, V and Zn. The main pollutant was Cu (average value 190 mg kg-1; max. value 1200 mg kg-1 and the enrichment factor of TS/SS of ~10). The lithogenic elements (Al, Ga, Fe, Li, Mg, Mn, Na, Sr) showed stability in the vertical direction (TS/SS); but in a across direction the element concentrations fluctuated according to the geology of the region. The element contents were also characterized according to land use. Maximum values for Cr, Ni and Pb were found in cultivated area (290 mg kg-1, 190 mg kg-1 and 130 mg kg-1, respectively). Using factor analysis, the distribution was reduced to three synthetic variables, which showed linkage in terms of geochemical similarities: F1 (Al-Ca-Cr-Fe-Mg-Mo), F2 (Li-Mn-Na-Ni-Pb) and F3 (Ba-Sr), accounting for 77% of the variability of analyzed elements. Spatial distribution of As, Cu, Pb, V and Zn showed that these elements are preferentially deposited in mine vicinity; due to dust deposition from ore and flotation tailings.
Copper Mine; Toxic Metals; Spatial Distribution; Soil Pollution
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