Enrichment, origin, and health risks of heavy metals in rice farms, case study: Ahwaz and Bavi counties


1 Department of Geology, Faculty of Earth Sciences, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz, Iran

2 Department of geology, Faculty of Earth Sciences, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz,Iran

3 Faculty of Earth Sciences, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz- Iran


The aim of this study is to investigate heavy metal concentrations in the Paddy farms of Ahwaz and Bavi counties and determine anthropogenic or natural sources of heavy metals, using statistical methods. 14 farms were chosen in Ahwaz and Bavi counties.After preparing samples, ICP-MS and ICP-OES devices were used to determine the concentration of heavy metals in soil and rice samples, respectively. Average concentration of Ag, As, Cd and Sb is higher than that of standard crust. Based on average environmental risk assessment indices, the highest contamination was related to Ag, As, Cd and Sb, which indicates the anthropogenic input to agricultural soil such as using pesticides and chemical fertilizers in the study area. Cr, Fe, Pb, Ni, and V have natural source; Sb and Cd anthropogenic source; As and Mo both anthropogenic and natural sources; and Ag anthropogenic source. Health risk due to As and Pb is probable through rice consumption. The highest mean concentration of metals in the rice samples was measured for Pb and the lowest for V. Pb concentration in the rice samples was higher than, and As concentration is close to the WHO standard. Non-carcinogenic risk for adults and children due to As and Pb is medium.


Ali, H., Khan, E., and Sajad, M. A., 2013, Phytoremediation of heavy metals—concepts and applications: Chemosphere, v. 91, no. 7, p. 869-881.
Doelsch, E., Saint Macary, H., and Van de Kerchove, V., 2006, Sources of very high heavy metal content in soils of volcanic island (La Réunion): Journal of Geochemical Exploration, v. 88, no. 1, p. 194-197.
Kříbek, B., Majer, V., Veselovský, F., and Nyambe, I., 2010, Discrimination of lithogenic and anthropogenic sources of metals and sulphur in soils of the central-northern part of the Zambian Copperbelt Mining District: a topsoil vs. subsurface soil concept: Journal of geochemical Exploration, v. 104, no. 3, p. 69-86.
Türkdoğan, M. K., Kilicel, F., Kara, K., Tuncer, I., and Uygan, I., 2003, Heavy metals in soil, vegetables and fruits in the endemic upper gastrointestinal cancer region of Turkey: Environmental toxicology and pharmacology, v. 13, no. 3, p. 175-179