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Potential eolian dust contribution to accumulation of selected heavy metals and rare earth elements in the aboveground biomass of Tamarix spp. from saline soils in Kazakhstan

Suska-Malawska, Małgorzata, Sulwiński, Marcin, Wilk, Mateusz, Otarov, Azimbay, Mętrak, Monika
Environmental monitoring and assessment 2019 v.191 no.2 pp. 57
Tamarix, aboveground biomass, atmospheric deposition, cadmium, dust, fractionation, heavy metals, hydromorphic soils, phytomass, rare earth elements, saline soils, semiarid zones, soil chemistry, Kazakhstan
In arid and semi-arid zones, atmospheric dust of different origins influences soil chemistry and plant biomass composition. Thus, studies on plant accumulation of heavy metals and rare earth elements (RREs) should include some assessments of potential eolian deposition. Here, we proposed the use of fractionation of metals in soils as an indirect method to assess potential atmospheric dust input to metal content in plant biomass. Our research was performed on individuals of Tamarix spp. growing on saline automorphic and hydromorphic soils in Kazakhstan. Studied soils could be, in general, classified as polluted, especially in industrial areas of Karaganda and Chromtau. However, concentrations of heavy metals and RREs in biomass remained low, as most of the studied elements were present in plant-inaccessible forms. Nevertheless, we recorded a high accumulation of Cd in biomass (70% of this element present in soils as plant-inaccessible fractions), which indicates the impact of Cd atmospheric deposition.