Potential environmental and human health risks caused by heavy metals and pathogens from illegal landfill sites in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Keywords:heavy metals, illegal landfills, pathogens, pollution
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, several illegal waste dumps pose a significant threat to soil and water contamination. The aim of this study was to determine the levels of heavy metal contamination of soils and microbiological contamination of water near investigated landfills. The goal was to identify the harmful effects of illegal landfills on the environment and public health, as well as assessing the potential of contaminants to pollute soil and water resources. Using an Atomic Absorption Spectrometer, the amounts and distribution of four heavy metals (Cd, Co, Pb, and Cr) in soil at four illegal landfills in Central Bosnia were studied. Three water samples collected near the dumpsites studied were tested for microbes. Bacteriological analyses of water included determination of total mesophilic aerobic bacteria, aerobic heterotrophic bacteria, total coliform and fecal coliform bacteria and fecal enterococci. Quantitative results were analyzed using an analysis of variance and Tukey HSD post hoc test. Concentrations of Cd (4.96 mg/kg) and Pb (206.97 mg/kg) recorded in soil at particular sites were above the limits of maximum allowable concentration. Cr and Pb values in soil samples were relatively higher on average than that of Cd and Co. Enrichment factor and pollution load index indicated high concentration of heavy metals in soil, especially Cd. Based on these results, waste from illegal landfills may release considerable amounts of harmful metals and microbes into the environment.
Copyright (c) 2022 Renata Bešta-Gajević, Mahir Gajević, Selma Pilić, Zoran Adžaip, Samir Đug, Sabina Dahija
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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