Title

Assessing soil heavy metal pollution in the water-level-fluctuation zone of the Three Gorges Reservoir, China

Document Type

Article

Publication details

Ye, C, Li, S, Zhang, Y & Zhang, Q 2011, 'Assessing soil heavy metal pollution in the water-level-fluctuation zone of the Three Gorges Reservoir, China', Journal of Hazardous Materials, vol. 191, no. 1-3, pp. 366-372.

Published version available from:

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2011.04.090

Peer Reviewed

Peer-Reviewed

Abstract

The water-level-fluctuation zone (WLFZ) between the elevations of 145–175 m in China's Three Gorges Reservoir has experienced a novel hydrological regime with half a year (May–September) exposed in summer and another half (October–April) submerged in winter. In September 2008 (before submergence) and June 2009 (after submergence), soil samples were collected in 12 sites in the WLFZ and heavy metals (Hg, As, Cr, Cd, Pb, Cu, Zn, Fe, and Mn) were determined. Enrichment factor (EF), factor analysis (FA), and factor analysis-multiple linear regression (FA-MLR) were employed for heavy metal pollution assessment, source identification, and source apportionment, respectively. Results demonstrate spatial variability in heavy metals before and after submergence and elements of As, Cd, Pb, Cu, and Zn are higher in the upper and low reaches. FA and FA-MLR reveal that As and Cd are the primary pollutants before submergence, and over 45% of As originates from domestic sewage and 59% of Cd from industrial wastes. After submergence, the major contaminants are Hg, Cd, and Pb, and traffic exhaust contributes approximately 81% to Hg and industrial effluent accounts about 36% and 73% for Cd and Pb, respectively. Our results suggest that increased shipping and industrial wastes have deposited large amounts of heavy metals which have been accumulated in the WLFZ during submergence period.