Evaluation of potentially toxic element contamination in the riparian zone of the River Sava
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Contaminated sediments transported onto the river terrace during high water events can contribute significant quantities of potentially toxic elements to riparian soils. Seven trace elements (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn) were analysed in the river sediment and riparian soil of the River Sava and their spatial distribution, potential toxicity and ecological risk levels were evaluated. The results showed that levels of all the trace metals were enriched to varying extents in both the sediment (As, Cr, Ni, and Pb) and soil (Ni) when compared to reference levels for sediments and European soils. Mean concentrations of trace metals in sediment and soil, apart from Pb, increased downstream in the River Sava. The similar increasing trend of these elements in sediment and soil may be explained by their increased load due to anthropogenic pressures (As, Cr, Ni, Pb and Zn in sediment and the significant accumulation of Ni in soil) and frequent periodic flooding (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni and Zn in se...diment and Cd in soil are influenced by both high water events and natural factors such as the geological substrate), particularly in lowland regions. In this study, soluble As, Cd, Cr, Cu and Ni fractions in sediment and soil LT 10% indicated their low mobility. The exceptions were readily soluble Pb and Zn in the sediment and soil at some sampling sites. In the lower reaches, levels of Pb in sediment was indicative of a medium environmental hazard, while there was a high environmental hazard in the upper reaches with the average Pb content in sediment higher than the PEL. Pollution factors for Pb in soil indicated a medium environmental hazard in the upper and middle reaches and a high environmental hazard at some sites in the lower stretches of the Sava River, although total Pb content in soil was within the range proposed for European soils.
Keywords:BCR sequential extraction / Potentially toxic elements / Riparian soil / River Sava / River sediment / Trace element enrichment
Source:Catena, 2019, 174, 399-412
- Elsevier B.V.