American Journal of Environmental Sciences

Environmental Pollution by Heavy Metals in the Gold Mining Region of East Cameroon

Dallou Guy Blanchard, Ngoa Engola Louis, Abdourahimi , Bongue Daniel, Saïdou , Ndjana Nkoulou II Joseph Emmanuel, Kankeu Boniface and Kwato Njock Moïse Godfroy

DOI : 10.3844/ajessp.2018.212.225

American Journal of Environmental Sciences

Volume 14, Issue 5

Pages 212-225

Abstract

The main objective of this study is to assess the level of heavy metals pollution in soil samples collected around gold mines located in Betaré Oya (BO) and Batouri (BA) in Eastern Cameroon. Elemental analysis of soil samples was carried out using Quant´X EDXRF spectrometer. Its sensitivity and accuracy were increased by using the Fundamental Parameter approach for quantification of the results. Analysis results showed high content of iron (39300±200 ppm), the presence of manganese (730±70 ppm), arsenic (4±2 ppm), zirconium (314±4 ppm) and lead (79±9 ppm) as compared to worldwide average upper continental crust (UCC). The mean Enrichment Factors (EF) decrease as Pb>As>Zr>Mn>Fe>Y>Ga>Zn>Cu>Ni> Rb>Sr>Sn>Ba in agreement with the Contamination Factors (CF). The values of pollution load index (PLI) were found to be low in all the studied samples and indicate that the studied sites in Bétaré Oya and Batouri are in low pollution status regarding the total of the studied metals. Results of this study pointed out that soils examined in the gold mining areas of Eastern Cameroon are polluted by heavy metals. It is therefore important that measures should be geared towards strengthening the monitoring of mining areas to stem down the level of contamination of soil. Phytoremediation of sites after closing open pits or the biogeosystem method would be a suitable way of regulation of the studies areas.

Copyright

© 2018 Dallou Guy Blanchard, Ngoa Engola Louis, Abdourahimi , Bongue Daniel, Saïdou , Ndjana Nkoulou II Joseph Emmanuel, Kankeu Boniface and Kwato Njock Moïse Godfroy. 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.