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Heavy metal status of soil and vegetables grown on peri-urban area of Lahore district

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Author(s): Ajmal Khan, Shahid Javid, Atif Muhmood, Tahir Mjeed, Abid Niaz and Abdul Majeed

Journal: Soil & Environment
ISSN 2074-9546

Volume: 32;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 49;
Date: 2013;
Original page

Keywords: Heavy metals | sewage water | soil | vegetables | peri-urban area

ABSTRACT
Use of wastewater for growing vegetables has become a common practice around big cities. Wastewater contains organic material and inorganic elements essential for plant growth but also contain heavy metals which may be lethal for animals and humans if their concentration increases than permissible limit. To monitor this situation, a survey was conducted to ascertain the addition of heavy metals into agricultural fields through wastewater irrigation and their translocation in to the edible parts of the vegetables. For this purpose, during year 2009-10, 25 sewage water, 76 soil, 40 leaf and 30 vegetable samples (tomato, spinach, carrot and cauliflower) were taken from peri-urban area of Lahore district. These samples were analyzed for Zn, Cu, Fe, Mn, Pb, Cd and Ni contents. The analysis showed that in wastewater concentration of Cu (100 %), Mn (72 %), Ni (32 %) and Cd (44%) were higher than the safe limits while Zn, Fe and Pb concentration was below permissible limits. In soil DTPA extractable concentration of Zn, Cu, Fe, Mn, Pb, Ni and Cd was in safe limit and ranged between 1.30-8.02, 1.06 -5.42, 8.60-35.03, 8.7-30.07, 2.11-30.86, 0.28-1.76 and 0.05-0.52 mg kg-1 respectively. In vegetable, 100 % leaf and fruit samples were contaminated and accumulation of heavy metals was higher than the WHO/FAO recommended permissible limits.
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