American Journal of Environmental Sciences

Arsenic and Antimony Content in Soil and Plants from Baia Mare Area, Romania

Gabriela Oprea, Angela Michnea, Cristina Mihali, Marin Şenilă, Cecilia Roman, Stela Jelea, Claudia Butean and Cristian Barz

DOI : 10.3844/ajessp.2010.33.40

American Journal of Environmental Sciences

Volume 6, Issue 1

Pages 33-40


Problem statement: The objective of this research was to evaluate the degree of soil contamination with arsenic and antimony in Baia Mare, a nonferrous mining and metallurgical center located in the North West region of Romania. The soil in the area is affected by the emissions of powders containing metals from metallurgical factories. Previous studies indicated the soil contamination with copper, zinc, cadmium and lead, but there is few data about the actual level of soil pollution with arsenic and antimony. Approach: The soil samples were collected from 2 districts of Baia Mare: Ferneziu, which is located in the proximity of a lead smelter and S?sar district which is located along the S?sar River in the preferential direction of the wind over a metallurgical factory producing lead. As reference was considered Dura area located in a less polluted hilly area, in the west part of the town. Samples of soil and plants from the residential area of Ferneziu, S?sar and Dura districts were collected. The arsenic determination was carried out by inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry and the antimony determination by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Results: In Ferneziu area, the concentration of arsenic in soil ranged between 0.25 and 255 mg kg-1. In S?sar district the arsenic concentration in the soil ranged between 5.5 and 295 mg kg-1. Regarding antimony, in Ferneziu area the concentration ranged between 5.3 and 40.6 mg kg-1; while in S?sar, antimony soils concentrations vary in the range: 0.9-18.4. Arsenic and antimony concentrations in plants were low for almost of the samples, both in Ferneziu and S?sar area indicating a low mobility of these elements in the studied soils. Conclusion: This study indicated the soil pollution with arsenic both in Ferneziu district and in S?sar district. The soil pollution with antimony was found especially in Ferneziu district.


© 2010 Gabriela Oprea, Angela Michnea, Cristina Mihali, Marin Şenilă, Cecilia Roman, Stela Jelea, Claudia Butean and Cristian Barz. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.