Soil Contamination by PCBs on a Regional Scale: the Case of Strážske, Slovakia
Igor Danielovič, Ján Hecl, Martin Danilovič
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Plant Production Research Center Piešťany – Agroecology Research Institute in Michalovce,
Špitalska 1273, 071 01 Michalovce, Slovak Republic
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2014;23(5):1547–1554
Trace amounts of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are ubiquitous in the environment. Because of industrial activity, other human activities, and accidents, higher concentrations of these chemicals may be present in soil in residential and recreational areas. Human uptake of these chemicals from such soil has been assumed by regulators, and people contacting such soil may be concerned about potential adverse health effects. For these reasons, the area around a former chemical manufacturing site (Stražske district – east Slovakia) is still important for monitoring PCBs in the environment.
The present study aimed to characterize the PCB contents in two soil (gl FL, st ct LV) types near sources of contamination (precint of former chemical factory Chemko Strážske, waste dump of former chemical factory, sewage channel of former production). PCB content was measured at 22 parcels of land (spring and summer term of sampling) in 2011.
The average value of sum of monitored PCBs (#52, 101, 118, 138, 153, 180) ranged from 4.7 ng·g-1 to 91 ng·g-1 and at five sites exceeded the limit of 50 ng·g-1 valid in Slovak Republic. PCB content in soil was not affected by sampling date (insignificant effect). Significant difference between PCB contents was found depending on soil type. Average content in Luvisols was by 17±2.2 ng·g-1 and in fluvisols by 33±2.4 ng·g-1 of PCBs. The correlation between the sum of PCBs and humus was significant only at gl FL (r = 0.64, p < 0.05).
The results demonstrate that PCB substances persist in the soil after nearly 30 years of cessation of production and therefore it is necessary to solve this problem in Slovakia.