Document Type : Case Study


1 Department of Geology, Faculty of Science, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran

2 Department of Environmental Science, Urmia Lake Research Institute, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran


Heavy metal(loid) contamination in the environment of mining areas has become an important problem. Cheshemeh-Konan is one of the main copper deposits in NW Iran that is currently abandoned. In the present work, the intensity of some metal(loid) pollutions in the soil of the mining area was assessed using three reliable indices. In addition, the potential of Sonchus oleraceus L., as the dominant plant grown in the area, in the uptake of some metal(loid)s from the soil was evaluated. The plant and soil samples were collected from the mining area and analyzed by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The results obtained revealed that the soil of the studied mining area was considerably contaminated by As (CF = 3.1), Cr (CF = 3.8), and Ni (CF = 4.07). It was confirmed that S. oleraceus had a good ability to accumulate Cd (0.74 mg/kg), Mo (0.67 mg/kg), Sr (285.80 mg/kg), Sn (161.10 mg/kg), and Sc (30.35 mg/kg) when mean concentrations of these metals in the soil were 0.14, 0.12, 161.05, 1.94, and 17.9 mg/kg, respectively. The plant biological absorption coefficient for these 5 elements was more than 1. The correlations between the Mo and Sr contents in the soil and plant were significantly positive. According to the results obtained, the present work provides some geochemical findings about the substrate, and leads to the increasing information about the relationship between the element concentrations in the plants and different soils.