Health risk assessment of abandoned agricultural soils based on heavy metal contents in Hong Kong, the world's most populated city

Yu Bon Man, Xiao Lin Sun, Yin Ge Zhao, Brenda Natalia Lopez, Shan Shan CHUNG, Sheng Chun Wu, Kwai Chung Cheung, Ming Hung WONG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

181 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The objective of this study was to evaluate the consequence of changing and using agricultural soils to other purposes in Hong Kong with respect to risk to human health. This study established concentrations of the following priority elements: As, Cu, Cd, Cr, Pb and Zn in terms of total burden (using mixed acid microwave digestion) and with respect to metal bioaccessibility (using an in vitro simulated gastric solution). 55 locations were sampled representing 12 different land use types, namely, agricultural (A), abandoned agricultural (Ab), organic farm (OF), container storage (CS), construction waste (CW), e-waste storage (EW (S)), e-waste dismantling workshop (EW (DW)), e-waste open burning site (EW (OBS)), open burning site (OBS), petrol station (PS), metal recycling workshop (MRW) and car dismantling workshop (CDW). The elemental concentrations were subsequently used to establish Hazard Indices (for adults and children). 95th percentile values of total elemental concentrations were used to derive a combined (ingestion, dermal and inhalation) Hazard Index (HI) only for adults where the EW (DW) land use type indicated the potential for increased harm (HI = 1.16). On the other hand, where 5th percentile values of total elemental concentrations were used to derive a combined Hazard Index (HI) for children the HI values exceeded 1 for CS, MRW, PS, EW (DW), EW (OBS) and CDW land use types (respectively, 1.21, 1.19, 1.52, 1.21, 1.81 and 2.04).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)570-576
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental International
Volume36
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2010

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Environmental Science(all)

User-Defined Keywords

  • Changing land use
  • Exposure pathways
  • Farm soils
  • Heavy metals
  • Non-cancer risk

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