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Level and Contamination Assessment of Soil along an Expressway in an Ecologically Valuable Area in Central Poland

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Department of Environmental Improvement, Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Nowoursynowska 159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
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Department of Geotechnical Engineering, Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Nowoursynowska 159, 02-776 Warsaw, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Yu-Pin Lin
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(10), 13372-13387; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph121013372
Received: 7 August 2015 / Revised: 24 September 2015 / Accepted: 12 October 2015 / Published: 23 October 2015
Express roads are a potential source of heavy metal contamination in the surrounding environment. The Warsaw Expressway (E30) is one of the busiest roads in the capital of Poland and cuts through the ecologically valuable area (Mazowiecki Natural Landscape Park). Soil samples were collected at distances of 0.5, 4.5 and 25 m from the expressway. The concentrations of cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn) were determined in the soils by the flame atomic absorption spectrometry method (FAAS). Soils located in the direct proximity of the analyzed stretch of road were found to have the highest values of pH and electrical conductivity (EC), which decreased along with an increase in the distance from the expressway. The contents of Cd, Cu and Zn were found to be higher than Polish national averages, whereas the average values of Ni and Pb were not exceeded. The pollution level was estimated based on the geo-accumulation index (Igeo), and the pollution index (PI). The results of Igeo and PI indexes revealed the following orders: Cu < Zn < Ni < Cd < Pb and Cu < Ni < Cd < Zn < Pb, and comparison with geochemical background values showed higher concentration of zinc, lead and cadmium. View Full-Text
Keywords: roadside hazards; heavy metals; expressways and roads; protected areas; pollution estimation roadside hazards; heavy metals; expressways and roads; protected areas; pollution estimation
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Radziemska, M.; Fronczyk, J. Level and Contamination Assessment of Soil along an Expressway in an Ecologically Valuable Area in Central Poland. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 13372-13387.

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