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

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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). Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)570-576
JournalEnvironment International
Volume36
Issue number6
Early online date23 May 2010
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2010

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agricultural soil
health risk
risk assessment
hazard
heavy metal
land use
automobile
metal
recycling
digestion
world
index
city
farm
acid
electronic waste
petrol
container
station

Citation

Man, Y. B., Sun, X. L., Zhao, Y. G., Lopez, B. N., Chung, S. S., Wu, S. C., . . . Wong, M. H. (2010). Health risk assessment of abandoned agricultural soils based on heavy metal contents in Hong Kong, the world’s most populated city. Environment International, 36(6), 570-576. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2010.04.014

Keywords

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