Evaluation of quantitative changes, pollution indexes and distribution of heavy metals Pb and Cd in the dust falling (case study: Zahedan city)

Document Type : Original Article


1 Environmental group, Faculty of Natural Resources and Desertification, Yazd University, Yazd, Iran

2 Rangeland and Watershed group, Faculty of Natural Resources and Desertification, Yazd University, Yazd, Iran



Dust is one of the phenomena of atmospheric and natural disasters that poses adverse environmental effects and impacts. Due to the wide distribution of dust, this phenomenon can also change the soil and its biology trends. Typically, dust particles have a diameter of less than 100 microns, which can be transmitted horizontally or vertically to the ground after miles. The aim of this study was to determine the amount of dust falling and heavy metals lead and cadmium concentrations in dust samples to evaluate these elements is the urban pollution.
Material and methods:
In this study, samples were collected using mild sediment trap for six months.
A total of 180 samples were collected. Samples were weighed accurately using a scale of 0.001 g. The analysis of samples was performed using ISO11466. The samples were extracted by the Institute of Water and Soil Research, and the concentration of heavy metals was measured by the atomic absorption spectrometry of the Analyti jena-951 model.
Results and discussion:
The results showed that in the winter of March and in the spring of June, the highest rate of dust was observed. The mean lead concentration in winter was 97.32 ± 5.40 mg.kg and 90.16 ± 5.93 mg.kg in spring. Also, the average cadmium concentration in winter was 37.19 ± 3.60 mg.kg and 29.62 ± 2.42 mg.kg in the spring. According to the pollution index (PI), the level of contamination of lead is high in the floor, however, according to this index, cadmium contamination in both seasons is more than the level of contamination of lead and is higher than the limit, which is the risk index The ecology of cadmium, with an average of 1673.98 and 1333.03, also confirms this and is in the hazardous area of contamination. Also, the ecological risk of lead metal in winter was 18.14 ± 1.01 and in the spring with a mean of 16.91 ± 1.11 in the low pollution class. According to the values obtained for the pollution load index (PLI), this contamination rate is Cdwinte r˃Cdspring˃Pbwinter˃Pbsprin, and both of these elements are highly polluted in the classroom.
The results of statistical calculations and contamination levels indicate that the amount of dust pollution to lead and cadmium is higher than most of the calculated indices in the classes with high to high contamination.Therefore, these elements have been brought into the environment as a result of human activities and have less natural origin.


Azimzadeh, H.R., 2016. The study of predicting wind erosion rate in wind erosion affected and critical areas of Iran. Part 12: Systan and Balochestan province, Desert Affair Office.
Akbari, A., Azimzadeh, H.R. and Ekhtesasi, M.R., 2012. The study of quantitative of dust falls (case study: Behbahan – September and October 2011), first National Conference on the Desert, International Center for the Study of the Desert of Tehran University. 27 June 2012.
Azimi-zadeh, B. and Khademi, H., 2013. Estimation of background concentration for evaluation of pollution of some heavy metals in surface soils of Mazandaran province, Water and Soil Journal (Agricultural Sciences and Technology). 27, 548-559 .
Barsam, Z. and Azimzadeh. H.R., 2017, Investigating the changes and determination of some physical and chemical properties of dust falling in Kerman, Master thesis, Yazd university, Yazd, Iran.
Bermudez, G.M.A., Jasan, R. and Pla, R.A., 2012. Heavy metals and trace elements in atmospheric fall-out: Their relationship with topsoil and wheat element composittion. Journal of Hazardous Materrials. 213-214, 447-456.
Chen, C.W., Kao, C.M., Chen, C.F. and Dong, C. D., 2007. Distribution and accumulation of heavy metals in the sediments of Kaohsiung Harbor, Taiwan. Chemosphere. 66, 1431-1440.
Csavina, J., Field, J. and Taylor, M.P., 2012. A review on the importance of metals and metalloids in atmospheric dust and aerosol from mining operations. Science of the Total Environment. 433, 58-73.
Dai, Q.L., Bi, X.H., Wu, J.H, Zhang, Y.F., Wang, J., Xu, H., Yao, L., Jiao, L. and Feng, Y.C., 2015.Characterization and source identifcation of heavy metals in ambient PM10 and PM2.5 in an integrated iron and steel industry zone compared with a background site, Aerosol and Air Quality Reserch. 15, 875-887.
Davtalabnezam, S., Shakeri, A. and Rezaei, M. 2016. Pollution, origin and health risk assessment of potential omnivorous elements in soil of ark city and Laleh park, Tehran, Journal of Geosciences.2, 209-226. (In Persian with English abstract)
De Miguel, E., Llamas, J. F., Chacón, E., Berg, T., Larssen, S., Royset, O. and Vadset, M., 1997. Origin and patterns of distribution of trace elements in street dust: Unleaded petrol and urban lead. Atmospheric Environment. 31(17), 2733-2740.
Esmaeili, A., Moore, F., Keshavarzi, B., Jaafarzadeh, N. and Kermani, M., 2014. A geochemical survey of heavy metals in agricultural and background soils of the Isfahan industrial zone, Iran, Catena. 121, 88-98.
Esmaeilzadeh Hosseini, M., Azimzadeh, H. R., Ekhtesasi, M.R. and Sodaiezadeh, H., 2015. Determining the contribution of desert areas in the production of falling fog using the source method (Case study: Yazd). Ecology. 41, 401-413. (In Persian with English abstract)
Gharibi, F., 2015. Investigation of physical and chemical changes of some heavy-dust pellets on Ahwaz city in february 2014 based on environmental assessment, endoscopy of environmental science. B. Sc. Thesis Faculty of Natural Resources and Desertification, Yazd university, Iran.
Ghrefat, H. and Yusuf, N., 2006. Assessing Mn, Fe, Cu, Zn and Cd pollution in bottom sediments of Wadi AL- Arab Dam, Jordan. Chemosphere. 65, 2114- 2121.
IRAN Meteorological Organization. Available online at: http://www.irimo.ir/far/services/climate
Islam, M.S., Ahmed, M.K., Raknuzzaman, M., Habibullah-Al-Mamun, M. and Islam, M.K., 2015. Heavy metal pollution in surface water and sediment: A preliminary assessment of an urban river in a developing country. Ecological Indicators. 48, 282-291.
Jaafari, F., 2013. Deposition rate and selected physical, chemical and clay mineralogical characteristics of atmospheric dust in Kerman city. M.Sc. thesis. Agriculture College. Isfahan University of Technology, 104 p. (In Persian).
Kamani, H., Ashrafi. S.D., Isazadeh, S., Jaafari, J., Hoseini, M., Kord-Mostafapour, F., Bazrafshan, E., Nazmara, S.H. and Mahvi, A.H., 2015. Heavy metal contamination in street dusts with various land uses in Zahedan, Iran, Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. 94, 382-386.
Karimi-Nezhad, M.T., Tabatabaii, S.M. and Gholami, A., 2015. Geochemical assessment of steel smelter-impacted urban soils, Ahvaz, Iran, Journal of Geochemical Exploration. 152, 91-109.
Khan. S., Munir. S., Sajjad. M. and Li, G., 2016. Urban park soil contamination by potentially harmful elements and human health risk in Peshawar City, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, Journal of Geochemical Exploration. 165, 102-110.
Khodakarami, L., Amiri, F., Sefyanian, A., Shariff, A.R.B.M., Tabatabaie, T. and Pradhan, B., 2013. Spatial patterns of heavy metals in soil under different geological structures and land uses for assessing metal enrichments, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 185(12), 9871-9888.
Li, X., Liu, L., Wang, Y., Luo G, Chen, X., Yang X, et al. 2013. Heavy metal contamination of urban soil in an old industrial city (Shenyang) in Northeast China, Geoderma. 192, 50-58.
Mahmoudi. Z. and Khademi, H., 2013. The use of magnetic susceptibility in prediction pollution of heavy metals in atmospheric dust from Isfahan and its surrounding cities. Ecology. 2, 123-132. (In Persian with English abstract).
Mlakootian, M., Ghiasseddin, M., Akbari, H. and Jaafarzadeh Haghighi Fard, N.A., 2013. Urban dust fall cocentration and its properties in Kerman city, Iran. Health Scope. 195-201.
Muller, G., 1969. Index of geoaccumulation in sediments of the Rhine river. Geojournal. 2 (3), 108–118.
Muller, G., 1979. Schwermetalle in den sedimenten des Rheins- Veranderungen seit 1971, Umschau. 79 (24), 778- 783.
Nimroozi, A. and Moafpourian, Gh.A., 2012. Investigating the distribution of heavy metals in the soil of water industry in Shiraz, Thirteenth Earth Science Forum. Nov. 2012 .
Niencheski, L.F., Baraj, B., Garcia Franca, R. and Mirlean, N., 2002. Lithium as a normalizer for the assessment of anthropogenic metal contamination of sediments of the southern area of Patos Lagoon. Aquatic Ecosystem Health and Management. 5(4), 473-483
Rasouli, A.A., Sari- Saraf, B. and Mohammadi, Gh. H., 2010. Analysis of the trend of occurrence of dust climate phenomena in the west of the country in the last 55 years using nonparametric statistics methods, Natural Geographic Quarterly, 9, 15-28.
Ravankhah, N., Mirzaie, R . A. and Masoum, S., 2015. Evaluation of land accumulation indices and contamination factor and principal component analysis in estimating soil contamination, Journal of Health and Environment, Iranian Journal of Environmental Health Research. 8(3), 345-356. (In persion)
Rezaee, Kh, Saion, E.B., YAP, C.K., Abdi, M. R. and Riyahi Bakhtiari, A., 2010. Verticle distribution of heavy metals and enrichment in south China sea sediment cores, International Journal of Environmental Research. 4(4), 877-886. Salamatian, S., 2013. Quantitative variations of dust fall and some of its physical and chemical properties from January 2012 to June 2013 (Case study: Isfahan City), MSc dissertation in Environmental Science, Yazd University, 3-4.
Salmanzadeh, M., Saidi, M. and Nabi bidhendi, G., 2012. Pollution of heavy metals in street dust settled in Tehran and their ecological risk assessment. Ecology. 38(61), 9-18. (In Persian with English abstract).
Sanai, A., 2014. Investigating changes in the concentration of some heavy metals in the soil of the streets of Isfahan, M.Sc. Natural Resources and Desertification College, Yazd University, Yazd, Iran.
Sistani, N., Moeinidini, M., Khorasani, N.A., Hamidian, A.H., Ali-Taleshi, M.S. and Azimi-Yancheshmeh, R., 2017. Heavy metal pollution in soils adjacent to Kerman steel industries: Evaluation of metal richness and degree of pollution, Journal of health and environment, Iranian Journal of Environmental Health Science. 10(1), 75-86. (In persion with English abstract) Sow, M., Goossens, D. and Rajot, J. L., 2006. Calibration of the MDCO dust collector and of four versions of the inverted Frisbee dust deposition sampler, Geomorphology. 82, 360-375.
T Jia, Q. and Huang, Y., 2008. Coarse dust around mining areas A study of available dust collectors and their efficiency, Lulea University of Technology, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
Tokalioglu, S., Kartal, S. and Birol, G., 2003. Application of a three-stage sequential extraction procedure for the determination of extractable metal contents in highway soils. Turkish Journal of Chemistry. 27, 333-346.
Yuswir. N.S., Praveena. S.M., Aris. A.Z., Syed Ismail. S.H.N. and Hashim, Z., 2015. Health risk assessment of heavy metal in urban surface soil (Klang district, Malaysia), Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. 95(1), 80- 89.
Yadegarnia Naeini, F., Azimzadeh H.R., Mosleh arani, A., Sotoudeh A. and Kiani B., 2019. Ecological risk assessment of heavy metals from cement factory dust, Environmental Health Engineering and Management Journal. 6(2), 129–137.