Deciphering factors controlling trace element distribution in the soils of Karaduvar industrial-agricultural area (Mersin, SE Turkey)


ENVIRONMENTAL EARTH SCIENCES, vol.60, no.1, pp.203-218, 2010 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 60 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12665-009-0180-8
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.203-218
  • Keywords: Soil pollution, Trace elements, Sequential extraction, Anthropogenic factors, Factor analysis, Turkey, SEQUENTIAL EXTRACTION PROCEDURE, HEAVY-METALS, CONTAMINATED SOILS, SEWAGE-SLUDGE, URBAN SOILS, FRACTIONATION, CADMIUM, SPECIATION, MOBILITY, COPPER
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


In this study, 30 topsoil samples were collected from Karaduvar area (Mersin, SE Turkey) where at present various industrial and agricultural activities are occurring. Using a five-step ultrasound-assisted sequential extraction (UASE) procedure, trace elements in soil samples were partitioned into the following: (1) soluble-exchangeable; (2) bound to carbonates; (3) bound to Fe- and Mn-oxides; (4) bound to organic matter and sulfide compounds, and (5) residual fraction. Concentrations of 11 trace elements in the extracts were determined using ICP-MS. Total concentrations ranged between (in mg kg(-1)) 3.35 and 7.26 for As; 1.18 and 3.96 for Cd; 10.76 and 20.26 for Co; 37.99 and 63.48 for Cr; 18.55 and 243.1 for Cu; 338.7 and 565.6 for Mn; 4.42 and 6.44 for Mo; 148 and 279.3 for Ni; 10.12 and 73.71 for Pb; 17.93 and 36.55 for V, and 25.46 and 331.7 for Zn. Factor analysis was applied to dataset in order to discriminate between natural and anthropogenic pollution sources and factors controlling the spatial distribution of trace elements in the area. Results suggest that distributions of Co, Cr, Mn, and Ni are mainly controlled by lithological factors, whereas, distributions of Cu, Pb, and Zn can be attributed to agricultural activities such as pesticide/herbicide use and fertilizer application, as well as irrigation with petroleum hydrocarbon-contaminated groundwater. Highest concentrations of Cd and Mo are generally observed around the diesel-fired thermal power plant and ATAA refinery. Highest concentrations of As and V are generally observed at the NW sector of the area; however, no definitive source can be designated for both of these elements.