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The Liwa area is a primary food production area in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and has intensively been used for agriculture. This study investigates the pollution levels with heavy metals in agricultural soils from the Liwa area. Thirty-two soil samples were analyzed for Mn, Zn, Cr, Ni, Cu, Pb, Cd, Co, and As. Results revealed that heavy metal levels varied in the ranges 220.02– 311.21, 42.39–66.92, 43.43–71.55, 32.86–52.12, 10.29–21.70, 2.83–8.84, 0.46–0.69, 0.03–0.37 mg/kg for Mn, Zn, Cr, Ni, Cu, Pb, Cd, Co, and As, respectively. All samples presented low As concentrations with an average of 0.01 mg/kg. The variations in bulk metal contents in the soil samples were related to multiple sources, including agrochemicals, atmospheric dust containing heavy metals, and traf-fic-related metals. Enrichment factor analysis indicates that Cd, Ni, Zn, and Cr were highly enriched in soils, and they could originate from non-crustal sources. Based on the geo-accumulation index (Igeo), the soil samples appeared uncontaminated with Mn, Cr, Zn, Pb, Co, As, Cu, uncontaminated to moderately contaminated with Ni and moderately contaminated with Cd. The contamination factors suggest low contamination, except for Ni, which showed moderate contamination. The average pollution load index (PLI) revealed unpolluted to low pollution of all soil samples. The ecological risk assessment (PERI) showed that all heavy metals posed a low risk, except for Cd which exhibited a high ecological risk.
Abu Dhabi, Agriculture, Ecological risk assessment, Heavy metals, Liwa, Pollution indices, Soil, UAE
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Al-Taani, Ahmed A.; Nazzal, Yousef; Howari, Fares M.; Iqbal, Jibran; Bou Orm, Nadine; Xavier, Cijo Madathil; Bărbulescu, Alina; Sharma, Manish; and Dumitriu, Cristian Stefan, "Contamination assessment of heavy metals in agricultural soil, in the liwa area (UAE)" (2021). All Works. 4086.
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Gold: This publication is openly available in an open access journal/series