Trace elements in agricultural soils of Saanich Peninsula, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada
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SubjectAgricultural soils; Biogeochemical cycles; Phosphate fertilizer; Soil pH; clay and organic matter; bioavailability and mobility; Trace elements; Weathering of rocks
The concentrations of trace elements in 30 Saanich Peninsula agricultural soil samples were determined by acid digestion and inductively coupled plasma - optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES). A comparison of the results obtained to a 1995 BC Ministry of Environment data indicated that As, Cu, Mo, Sb, Se and Sn concentrations had increased whereas the concentrations of Ba, Be, Cd, Cr, Co, Mn, Ni, Pb, V and Zn had decreased. The principal sources of the trace elements were anthropogenic sources including fertilizer and manure application, weathering of rocks and atmospheric deposition. The concentrations changes were largely influenced by the individual properties of the elements, soil texture, soil organic matter and clay content. The mobility of the trace elements in the soils was mainly controlled by clay content and followed the order Cd> B >Mo> Cr> V> Zn> Se> Co> Cr> As> Ba> Sb> Mn> Ag, Be, Hg, Ni, Pb.
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