Heavy metals

Note: this was preliminary work carried out to see if heavy metal analysis of our soil samples is possible.

The heavy metal content of our soil samples was analysed. We looked for the amounts of arsenic (As), chrome (Cr), cobalt (Co), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), vanadium (V), zinc (Zn) and mercury (Hg) in the soil. Here are the results for different heavy metals showing the concentration in parts per million, with the exception of mercury where the concentration is show in parts per billion.

A table comparing reference values compiled from Environment Agency UKSHS Report No. 7 Environmental concentrations of heavy metals in UK soil and herbage to our results is given below. This compares the range of our results against overall UK urban and rural soil samples (with the exception of cobalt (Co) which is compared against a value for the normal range of world soils).

Although some of our results look to be higher than this reference range, we do not know how our collection methods and processing for heavy metal analysis compare to theirs, and whether we may have sources of contamination in our samples. Soil pH, waterlogging and other environmental factors may also affect heavy metal concentrations.