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ISSN: 2157-7625

Journal of Ecosystem & Ecography
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Research Article

Concentrations of Trace Metals from Soils in Pretoria, South Africa

Olowoyo JO1*, van Heerden E1 and Fischer JL2

1Department of Biology, University of Limpopo, Medunsa Campus, P. O. Box 139 Medunsa, Pretoria, South Africa

2SASOL, South Africa

*Corresponding Author:
Olowoyo JO
University of Limpopo, Department of Biology
Medunsa Campus. P. O. Box 139 Medunsa
Pretoria, South Africa
E-mail: [email protected]

Received date: May 14, 2012; Accepted date: June 26, 2012; Published date: June 29, 2012

Citation: Olowoyo JO, van Heerden E, Fischer JL (2012) Concentrations of Trace Metals from Soils in Pretoria, South Africa. J Ecosyst Ecogr 2:113. doi:10.4172/2157-7625.1000113

Copyright: © 2012 Olowoyo JO, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and and source are credited.

Abstract

Trace metals are common pollutants in urban industrial soils thus making the assessment of these pollutants important especially from developing countries. The present study investigated the level and source of trace metals from different sites in Pretoria in relation to vehicular emission. Soil samples were taken from ten different locations (0-5 cm and 5-15 cm) in the city and analyzed for trace metal content using Inductive Couple Plasma Mass Spectrophotometer (ICP-MS). The values of trace metals from the dust and top soil samples were in the range 12.8-145 μg/g for Pb, 33.9-140 μg/g for Cu, 43.6-101 μg/g for Zn, 0.24-3.49 μg/g for Sb, 39.3-97.6 mg/g for Fe and 0.09-0.98 μg/g for Cd. The result revealed a statistically different concentrations for trace metals in all the sites and layers (p<0.01). Increased concentrations of Pb, Cu, Zn and Sb were witnessed in areas associated high traffic areas. The pollution index (PI) revealed that some of the sites were enriched and polluted with metals associated with vehicular emissions. It was concluded from the study that vehicular emission played a significant role in releasing trace metals into the environment. This can pose a serious health risk to humans via inhalation of suspended dust, direct ingestion or through consumption of contaminated food stuff.

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