Multivariate Analysis and Heavy Metals Pollution Evaluation in Yellow River Surface Sediments
Jun Ren1,2, Zhen Shang1, Ling Tao1,2, Xia Wang1
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1School of Environmental and Municipal Engineering, Lanzhou Jiaotong University, Lanzhou 730070, P. R. China
2Engineering Research Center for Cold and Arid Regions, Water Resource Comprehensive Utilization,
Ministry of Education, Lanzhou 730070, P. R. China
Submission date: 2014-11-23
Final revision date: 2015-01-16
Acceptance date: 2015-01-18
Publication date: 2015-05-20
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2015;24(3):1041–1048
The concentrations of heavy metals in 21 samples collected from surface sediments from the Qinghai section of the Yellow were investigated in order to evaluate their distribution and pollution levels. The total concentrations showed wide variations with Cu 11.86~57.02 mg/kg, Fe 17236.67~41340.00 mg/kg, Mn 431.93~877.27 mg/kg, Ni 14.58~86.11 mg/kg, Zn 67.18~149.00 mg/kg, Cr 87.84~169.70 mg/kg, Pb 1.21~20.69 mg/kg, and Cd 0.27~1.43 mg/kg. The mean values of the heavy metal contents were arranged in the following decreasing order: Fe>Mn>Cr>Zn>Ni>Cu>Pb>Cd. The correlation between Cu, Fe, and Zn concentrations was significantly positive. These heavy metals had common sources, mutual dependence, and identical behavior during transport. However, there was no significant correlation among some of these metals, indicating different anthropogenic and natural sources. PCA extracted three components with eigenvalues explaining 76.259% of the total variance. Fe, Mn, and Zn had a common natural origin controlled by the first component. Cu, Ni, and Cd could originate anthropogenic sources controlled by the second component. The higher values of geo-accumulation index, enrichment factor, and pollution load index of Cr in the Qinghai section were attributed principally to anthropogenic activities such as industrial effluents, vehicular emissions, and terrigenous influx from the river. Zn appeared to pose no risk at all of the sites of the system. In total, the pollution class from the Qinghai section of the river is 0-1, belonging to the unpolluted to moderately polluted degree.