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Assessment of multiple exposure to chemical elements and health risks among residents near Huodehong lead-zinc mining area in Yunnan, Southwest China

Wang, Yirun, Wang, Ruming, Fan, Liyun, Chen, Tiantian, Bai, Yahong, Yu, Qianru, Liu, Ying
Chemosphere 2017 v.174 pp. 613-627
adults, cadmium, children, chromium, copper, diet, environmental protection, exposure pathways, females, hairs, human health, humans, lead, males, mining, risk, risk assessment, soil, spectroscopy, sustainable development, vegetables, zinc, China
The contents of chemical elements (Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb and Zn) in 11 kinds of crop/vegetables and soils around the Huodehong lead-zinc mining area in Yunnan, Southwest China were determined by using inductive coupled plasma emission spectrometry (ICP-MS). Results showed that element contents in soils decreased in the order of Zn > Pb > Cr > Cu > Cd. The high geo-accumulation indexes (Igeo) showed that cultivated soils near mine were practically polluted by Cd, Pb and Zn. The contents of Cd, Cr and Pb in crop/vegetables samples were significantly higher than the maximum permissible standard set by China. The potential health risk assessments among local residents were evaluated by the hazard index (HI), the total carcinogenic risk (TCR), the target hazard quotient (THQ) and carcinogenic risk (CR), respectively. The results showed that diet was the dominant exposure pathway. The results of HI for adult and child were 6.21 and 6.08, respectively. TCR values of Cr and Cd were more than 10−4. The THQ decreased in the following order: Cd > Pb > Cu > Zn > Cr. Among all kinds of crop/vegetables, leafy-vegetables were the major source of Cd and Pb exposure, root-vegetable were the important factors for Cu and Zn exposure, but tuber-vegetable were the factors for Cr exposure. The contents of Cd and Pb in human scalp hairs near Huodehong mine were higher than that in S20km area. Females possessed a higher risk for Cd, Cr, Cu and Pb exposure than males in study area. Significant differences between ages were found for Cd, Cu and Pb (p < 0.01). This study provided a powerful basis for the coordination of local environmental protection and economic sustainable development and assessing chemical elements risk to human health.