Speciation of four heavy metals in agricultural soils around DraaLasfarmine area in Marrakech (Morocco)

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Laboratoire de Toxicologie et d’hygiène Industrielle, 1 rue Gaston Veil, 44035, Nantes Cedex, France

2 Laboratoire Régional du diagnostic épidémiologique et d’hygiène du milieu, Rue AbdelouahabDerraq ,Marrakech , Maroc



This study was carried out to 1. determine spatial variations of heavy metal deposition in agricultural soils of two rural communities (OuledBouAicha and Tazakourte) of about 5790 ha in a mining area near Marrakech city in Morocco; 2. to assess the extent of metallic pollution generated by the mining activity and; 3. to identify the key mechanism responsible for this contamination and its relation to mining activity. Soil pollution assessment was carried out on one hand by measurement of the total metal concentration and on the other hand by studying four heavy metals speciation of the studied soils. The chemical forms of four heavy metals in soils around DraaLasfar mine were studied by determining soil Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn species using standard solvent extraction and Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometric techniques. The chemical pools of the metals indicated that the metals were distributed into six fractions with most of them residing in the non-residual fractions thus suggesting how readily the metals are released into the environment. Considering that the metals occur in the most available forms, we suggested that it is most likely that the metals must have been derived from anthropogenic sources especially from the mining activity in the studied region.


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