Research Journal of Chemistry

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Comprehensive assessment of heavy metal contaminations in agricultural soil through Pollution Indices from a rapidly developing city of India

Dipti, Kumar Pradeep, Dwivedi Sanjay and Singh Rana Pratap

Res. J. Chem. Environ; Vol. 27(8); 115-122; doi:; (2023)

This study has been conducted for the comprehensive evaluation of heavy metals (HMs) contamination such as Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb in agricultural soils via pollution indices i.e. geoaccumulation index (Igeo), contamination degree (CD), pollution load index (PLI), potential ecological risk (PRI) etc. Assessment for the determination of ecological damage was caused by these HMs in different agro-ecosystems around metropolitan city Lucknow. For this, data has been taken from our previous study8 depicting significant enrichment of above mentioned HMs in agricultural soil present near riparian areas, brick kilns, waste dump sites etc. Our results indicated that soil samples collected from Gaughat (GAF) and Sitapur (SAF) showed very high degree of contamination (CD>24). Further, pollution load index also reflected “very high” and “moderate to high” contamination with values 6.9075 and 3.3214 in these two sites respectively. Overall, Igeo values indicated moderate contamination with Mn and Ni metals and low contamination with Cr, Cu, Zn and Cd metals.

However, Igeo with value 4.923 indicated extremely high degree of contamination due to Cd in Gaughat (GAF) soil. In the view of potential ecological risk index, GAF site poses a “very high” potential ecological risk while maximum sites pose “moderate” ecological risk. The ecological risk factor in agricultural soil was in the following descending order: Cd > Ni > Cu > Pb > Cr > Mn > Zn > Fe. Cadmium predominantly contributes significant amount to the PRI of soil while Ni, Cu, Pb, Cr, Mn and Zn showed low ecological risk.