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Health Risks Assessment of Heavy Metal Pollution in the Soil-Crop System from an E-Waste Dismantling Area

Shengting Rao#, Jia Fang#, Keli Zhao*

Key Laboratory of Soil Contamination Bioremediation of Zhejiang Province, Zhejiang Agriculture and Forestry University, Hangzhou, 311300, China

* Corresponding Author: Keli Zhao. Email:

(This article belongs to this Special Issue: The Effect of Soil Quality Degradation on the Plant Growth, Quality and Food Safety in Subtropical Agroforestry Ecosystems)

Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany 2022, 91(12), 2669-2685.


Soil is an essential resource for agricultural production. In order to investigate the pollution situation of heavy metals in the soil-crop system in the e-waste dismantling area, the crop and soil samples (226 pairs, including leaf vegetables, solanaceous vegetables, root vegetables, and fruits) around the e-waste dismantling area in southeastern Zhejiang Province were collected. The concentrations of Cd, Cu, Pb, and Cr were determined. The average concentrations of Cd, Cu, Pb, and Cr in soils were 0.94, 107.79, 80.28, and 78.14 mg kg-1, respectively, and their corresponding concentrations in crops were 0.024, 0.7, 0.041, and 0.06 mg kg-1, respectively. The transfer capacity of leaf vegetables was significantly higher than that of non-leaf vegetables, and the accumulation of four heavy metals in crops tended to be Cd > Cu > Cr/Pb. The pollution index’s results revealed that the soil pollution degree under different land uses ranked as root vegetables soil > leaf vegetables soil > solanaceous vegetables soil > fruit soil. The carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic risks of heavy metal exposure were ranked as food intake > accidental ingestion > dermal contact > inhalation. The comprehensive non-carcinogenic risk was ranked as Cr > Cd > Pb/Cu. Our results could be used to provide useful information for further crop cultivation layout in the study area, which can guarantee the local residents’ health and food safety.


Cite This Article

Rao, S., Fang, J., Zhao, K. (2022). Health Risks Assessment of Heavy Metal Pollution in the Soil-Crop System from an E-Waste Dismantling Area. Phyton-International Journal of Experimental Botany, 91(12), 2669–2685.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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