SOIL Studies

SOIL Studies

2023, Vol 12, Num, 2     (Pages: 077-091)

Assessment of Ecological Risk Potential in Metal-Contaminated Soils of Baghdad City, Iraq

Gülay Karahan 1 ,Hussain Ali Hussain Alzuabidi 2

1 Department of Landscape Architecture, Faculty of Forest, Çankırı Karatekin University, 18200 Çankırı, Türkiye
2 Department of Soil and Water, Collage of Agriculture, Baghdad University, Baghdad, Iraq

DOI: 10.21657/soilst.1408051
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Metal pollution in the soil leads to the deterioration of agricultural production by negatively affecting the all properties of the soil. Because the more than 7 million people living in and the old military camp was used as residence by poor families after the war of 2003, Baghdad city has a risk factor from metal pollution. With this aim, metal pollution in the soil of Baghdad city was studied. Three different sites (farm, camp, and park) were selected. Ten soil samples were taken randomly from 0-15 cm depth on each of the sites. Concentrations of metals [calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), iron (Fe), zinc (Zn), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), cobalt (Co), chromium (Cr), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), and nickel (Ni)] of soil samples were measured using atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS). Basic soil properties such as texture class and pH were measured on the disturbed samples. Concentrations increased Cr < Ni < Fe < Co < Mg < Cd < Cu < Ca < Zn < Pb < Mn respectively. The highest coefficient of variation value is Mg (90.76%) in camp and Fe in farm (77.81%) and park (68.66%) soil samples. The lowest values were found in Ca (farm 6.12%, camp 12.51%, park 22.37%). Metal concentrations were evaluated for soil quality by Pollution (CF) and Ecological Risk Factor (Eir ), Potential Ecological Risk Index (PERI), and Geoaccumulation Index (Igeo). For CF, only Cd was found as slightly contaminated in farm (1.89) and park (1.35) soils, and moderately contaminated in camp (2.11) soils. According to Eri values, a serious risk of Pb was found in farm and camp soils in two samples each and 3 samples in park soils. According to the PERI results, no risk was determined in all soils except for the extreme (21 samples) and high (6 samples) Cd risk. Similarly, Igeo values of Pb increased in the farm (1.23), camp (1.44) and park (2.11), while Cd increased in the park (5.22), farm (5.71), and camp (5.87). High concentrations in all soils of Cd (4.74, 5.29, and 3.37) and Pb (35.36, 40.71, and 64.97) were attributed to anthropogenic activities such as the population, household waste, car exhausts, and the results of 2003 war.


Keywords : Soil pollution Baghdad soils Metal Cadmium Anthropogenic pollution