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Open AccessArticle

Geochemical Fractions of the Agricultural Soils of Southern Poland and the Assessment of the Potentially Harmful Element Mobility

1
Faculty of Geology, Geophysics, and Environmental Protection, Department of Environmental Protection, AGH University of Science and Technology, Al. Mickiewicza 30, 30-059 Kraków, Poland
2
Faculty of Agriculture and Economics, Department of Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry, University of Agriculture in Kraków, Al. A. Mickiewicza 21, 31-120 Kraków, Poland
3
Faculty of Economics and Management, Department of International Economic Relations, Opole University of Technology, ul. Prószkowska 76, 45-758 Opole, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Minerals 2019, 9(11), 674; https://doi.org/10.3390/min9110674
Received: 24 September 2019 / Revised: 24 October 2019 / Accepted: 29 October 2019 / Published: 31 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trace Element Biogeochemistry)
Surface samples (0–25 cm each) of agricultural soils were investigated in five Regions (voivodeships) of southern Poland. The mean Potentially Harmful Element (PHE) pseudototal content ranges were as follows (mg/kg): As 5.19–10.9, Cd 0.34–1.56, Co 1.92–6.70, Cr 9.05–25.7, Cu 8.74–69.4, Hg 0.001–0.08, Ni 3.93–19.9, Pb 20.3–183, Sb 0.80–1.42, Tl 0.04–0.17, and Zn 61.3–422. The PHE availability depended on pH, the organic carbon (Corg) content, and the pseudototal PHE content in soils. Exchangeable and acid soluble PHE contents (BCRF1) determined in the Community Bureau of Reference (BCR) three-step sequential extraction procedure decreased in this order: Cd > Zn > Co > Ni = Sb > Cu > Tl > As > Cr = Pb. Actually available PHE contents in pore water (0.01 mol/dm3 CaCl2) ranged as follows: Cd 0.81–17%, Cr 0–0.25%, Cu 0.01–2.31%, Ni 0.16–2%, Pb 0.2–0.49%, and Zn 0.25–2.12%. The potential soluble total content of PHEs in pore water (0.05 mol/dm3 Na2EDTA) ranged as follows: Cd 27–91%, Cr 0.7–7.1%, Cu 6.7–98%, Ni 3.6–41%, Pb 15–41%, and Zn 3–34%. The mobility factor (MF) values indicated Cd (31.6%) and Zn (21.0%) as the most mobile elements in soil. Other PHEs followed the order of Co > Ni > Tl > As > Sb > Cu > Cr > Pb, with the MF values <10%. The risk assessment code (RAC) values revealed a very high ecological risk of Cd and Zn in the Podkarpackie Region and a high ecological risk of Cd in the Regions of Opolskie, Śląskie, Małopolskie, and Podkarpackie, and the same of Zn in the Opolskie and Śląskie. The modified risk assessment code (mRAC) index pointed a very high potential of adverse effects in soils in the Podkarpackie and a medium potential in the Opolskie, Śląskie, Małopolskie, and Świętokrzyskie. The potential adverse effect risk, described by the individual contamination factor (ICF) factor, was the following in the Regions, in the decreasing order: Cd > Pb > Sb > Zn > Co > Cu > Ni > Tl > As > Cr, and the same as described by the global contamination factor (GCF) values: Opolskie > Podkarpackie > Świętokrzyskie > Śląskie > Małopolskie.
Keywords: mobility; ecological risk; MF factor; mRAC index; ICF factor; GCF factor mobility; ecological risk; MF factor; mRAC index; ICF factor; GCF factor
MDPI and ACS Style

Gruszecka-Kosowska, A.; Baran, A.; Mazur-Kajta, K.; Czech, T. Geochemical Fractions of the Agricultural Soils of Southern Poland and the Assessment of the Potentially Harmful Element Mobility. Minerals 2019, 9, 674.

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