Heavy metal (Cr, Cu, Zn, As, Cd, and Pb) contamination in irrigation water, soil, and vegetables was investigated in farmland adjacent to a multi-industry zone in Bangladesh in dry and wet seasons. In the zone, many factories release wastewater into nearby irrigation canals, and vegetables cultivated with this water could be a major food chain route for human exposure. In the irrigation water and vegetables, heavy metal concentrations exceeded permissible levels in the two seasons, but this was not the case in soil. Zn had the highest concentration, and Cd had the lowest concentration in irrigation water, soil, and vegetables. All heavy metal concentrations were found to be lower in the wet than in the dry season, which is due to the dilution of water by rainfall, lower absorption of heavy metals from the diluted irrigation water, and heavy metal absorption from low concentrated irrigation water and/or soil. The cluster analysis data of irrigation water, soil, and vegetables revealed that the heavy metals in vegetables were considered to be absorbed from irrigation water in the wet season and from soil in the dry season. In the dry season, the high heavy metal concentrations in vegetables might be caused by a high bioconcentration factor (mostly > 20%).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Aquatic Science
- Water Science and Technology