Section: Chemistry of natural environments and objects
The levels of heavy metals (HMs) in soil samples and plants grown on experimental plots near the Alaverdi copper smelting enterprise has been studied. The studies were conducted during the period of the enterprise’s operating in incomplete capacity (spring – summer 2022). The wind direction in the region was taken into account. The brown forest soils were taken from the topsoil horizon at a depth of 0–25 cm on the selected pilot plots located within 3; 10; 30 km from the enterprise. Potato, beet, carrot, pepper and eggplant were grown in field plots. The contents of HMs in soil and plant samples were determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy. A comparative series of Cu > Pb > Zn > Co > Mn was established according to the gross HMs content in soil samples from plots close to the enterprise (3 km). In this series of experiments the comparative series of mobile forms of HMs follows the same sequence but with lower values. The mobility of Cu, Pb, Zn and Co in soil samples was on average 15.5%, in the case of Mn – 25.5% (3 km). The highest mobility in soil samples from distant plots (30 km) in the wind-rose direction was detected for Cu, Co, and Mn (14.3% on average), and the mobility of Pb and Zn was 8%. Calculations of bio-ecological and geo-ecological coefficients showed that the studied plants are characterized by individual scenario of metabolic processes, but a common adaptation strategy to the stressor. It has been shown that HMs accumulate more in the reproductive organs of plants than in the vegetative ones. This explains the differences in plant tolerance to chemical elements.
Keywords: soil, plants, heavy metals, anthropogenic pollution, mobility, concentration factor, biological accumulation factor, mobility index
Article published in number 3 for 2023 DOI: 10.25750/1995-4301-2023-3-120-128