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Leachability characteristic of heavy metals and associated health risk study in typical copper mining-impacted sediments

Yan, Bo, Xu, Da-Mao, Chen, Tao, Yan, Zi-Ang, Li, Li-Li, Wang, Ming-Hui
Chemosphere 2020 v.239
arsenic, barium, cadmium, carcinogenicity, copper, environmental monitoring, governance, health effects assessments, heavy metals, leaching, lead, mercury, mining, nickel, pollutants, pollution, public safety, remediation, sediments, spatial variation, stakeholders, zinc, China
A total of 100 samples were collected from the sediments of a typical copper mining area, south China. Leaching concentrations of selected heavy metals (Ni, Cd, Cu, Pb, Zn, Ba, As, and Hg) were measured to evaluate their distribution patterns and associated health risk. Leaching concentrations of Cu (3.58 ± 1.49 mg/L), Pb (1.50 ± 1.06 mg/L), and Zn (4.04 ± 1.68 mg/L) were significantly higher than the other metals in the samples. By evaluating the spatial heterogeneity, it was found that leaching metal concentrations did not decrease with environmental gradients, mostly caused by diverse distribution in pollution sources. The hazard index and carcinogenic risk indices showed significant risks of human exposure. For public safety, priority governance should be given to the main pollutants (Cd, Cu, Pb, Zn, and As) in sediments. In future studies, the integrated data will be urgently required for local stakeholders to conduct environmental monitoring and remediation scenarios.