Spatial distribution and health risk assessment for heavy metals of the soils around coal-fired power plants of northwest Turkey

PARLAK M., Taş İ., Görgişen C., GÖKALP Z.

International Journal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/03067319.2023.2243231
  • Journal Name: International Journal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Agricultural & Environmental Science Database, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), CAB Abstracts, Chemical Abstracts Core, Chimica, Compendex, Environment Index, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, Pollution Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database
  • Keywords: coal-fired power plant, Heavy metals, risk evaluation, soil contamination
  • Erciyes University Affiliated: Yes


This study was conducted to determine heavy metal concentrations of the soils around two thermal power plants located in Çanakkale province (northwest Turkey) and health hazards of these heavy metals. By using random sampling method, 45 surface soils (0–5 cm depth) were taken from around the thermal power plants and heavy metal analyses were conducted on these samples. Average values of some heavy metals were greater than the normal background levels, and the others were lower than the background levels. While Cd, Cr, Mn, Ni and Zn concentrations were higher than worldwide soils, Co, Cu, and Pb concentrations were lower than worldwide soils. Correlation analysis revealed significant positive correlations (p < 0.05) between 1) Co and Cd, 2) Cr and Cd, 3) Ni and Cd, 4) Pb and Cu, 5) Zn and Mn 6) Zn and Pb and highly significant positive correlations (p < 0.01) between 1) Cu and Cd, 2) Mn and Cd, 3) Zn and Cd, 4) Cr and Co, 5) Cu and Co, 6) Mn and Co, 7) Ni and Co, 8) Cu and Cr, 9) Mn and Cr, 10) Ni and Cr, 11) Ni and Cr, 12) Mn and Cu, 13) Ni and Cu, 14) Zn and Cu. Health risk assessments of heavy metals were made based on both carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic risk index. The total non-carcinogenic risk index is 3.87E–01 for children and 4.67 E-02 for adults and present values were above these limits. Carcinogenic risks of heavy metals in children and adults were determined in the order of Cr > Pb > Ni > Co > Pb. Cr and Pb were found to be higher than the acceptable risk range (10-6–10-4) in children and adults. Since Cr and Pb concentrations exceed the limit values, heavy metal contents of the soils in the study area should be monitored regularly.