Cabała J., Teper L Metalliferous constituents of rhizosphere soils contaminated by Zn-Pb mining in southern Poland. Water, Air, & Soil Pollution (in press, Springer online ).


2 Tab, 6 Figs.



Industrial soils near Zn-Pb mines and metallurgical plants in the vicinity of Olkusz (southern Poland) are exposed to high environmental stress related to heavy metal pollution (Zn, Pb, Cd, Mn, Fe, Tl and As) from waste disposal sites and primary ores. X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) with energy dispersive spectrometry analyses (EDS) and Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy (AAS) were used to analyze rhizosphere soil samples from the area. The mineral composition of the rhizosphere soils was determined. Carbonates of lead, cadmium and zinc, arsenic-lead sulphosalts and other minerals occurring on the root epiderm are described. Mineral aggregates of secondary origin include polymineralic spherules containing high concentrations of Zn (up to 2.3%), Pb (up to 0.7%), Fe (up to 23%), Cd (up to 427 mg kg-1) and Tl (up to139 mg kg-1). Processes on the rhizoplane, and in the zone where plant-root exudation solutions are active, promote the crystallization of metalliferous minerals. ESEM is recommended as an efficient method for examining alteration occurring in the rhizosphere environment.


keywords: Heavy metal contamination; Microenvironment; Rhizosphere soils.