Assessment and mapping of environmental quality in agricultural soils of Zhejiang Province, China.

Institute ofAgricultural Remote Sensing and Information System, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310029, China.
Journal of Environmental Sciences (Impact Factor: 1.77). 02/2007; 19(1):50-4. DOI: 10.1016/S1001-0742(07)60008-4
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Heavy metal concentrations in agricultural soils of Zhejiang Province were monitored to indicate the status of heavy metal contamination and assess environmental quality of agricultural soils. A total of 908 soil samples were collected from 38 counties in Zhejiang Province and eight heavy metal (Cd, Cr, Pb, Hg, Cu, Zn, Ni and As) concentrations had been evaluated in agricultural soil. It was found 775 samples were unpolluted and 133 samples were slightly polluted and more respectively, that is approximately 14.65% agricultural soil samples had the heavy metal concentration above the threshold level in this province by means of Nemerow's synthetical pollution index method according to the second grade of Standards for Soil Environmental Quality of China (GB15618-1995). Contamination of Cd was the highest, followed by Ni, As and Zn were lower correspondingly. Moreover, Inverse Distance Weighted (IDW) interpolation method was used to make an assessment map of soil environmental quality based on the Nemerow's pollution index and the soil environmental quality was categorized into five grades. Moreover, ten indices were calculated as input parameters for principal component analysis (PCA) and the principal components (PCs) were created to compare environmental quality of different soils and regions. The results revealed that environmental quality of tea soils was better than that of paddy soils, vegetable soils and fruit soils. This study indicated that GIS combined with multivariate statistical approaches proved to be effective and powerful tool in the mapping of soil contamination distribution and the assessment of soil environmental quality on provincial scale, which is beneficial to environmental protection and management decision-making by local government.

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