Lucho-Constantino C. A., Álvarez S.M., Beltrán-Hernández R. I., Prieto-García F., Poggi V. H. M. 2005. A multivariate analysis of accumulation and fractionation of selected cations and heavy metals in agricultural soils in Hidalgo State, Mexico irrigated with raw wastewater. Environment Internacional. 31, 313-323.
We evaluated the accumulation and distribution of major and trace elements in agricultural soils of District 03 (DR03) in the State of Hidalgo, Mexico, irrigated with raw wastewaters for an average of 20 years. Samples of topsoils (030 cm depth) were extracted using a modified Tessier method.Total concentrations of the species tested were in the ranges of 675?1176 mg K kg?1, 277.91001 mg Na kg?1, 6,708?81,854 mg Ca kg?1, 23,800?106,974 mg Mg kg?1, 9.2?123.8 mg B kg?1, 0.6?1.9 mg Cd kg?1, 11.6?27.4 mg Cr kg?1, 3.947.0 mg Pb kg?1. Concentrations of As and Hg were very low. Concentrations of total Cd, Cr and Pb were generally below the maximum permissible levels set by the regulations of the European Union except for cadmium, which was in the middle of the maximum European range allowed for two soils. Regarding lead, one soil (S5) could reach the maximum permissible level of the EU in 6 more years of continued irrigation. On the other hand, contents of Pb in the most mobile fractions (e in this work) were significant (range: 328%). This distribution translated into concentrations of soluble plus exchangeable lead of approximately 2 mg Pb kg?1 in three of six soils, significantly higher than the Swiss tolerance limit of 1.0 mg Pb kg?1 for mobile fractions of lead in soils.Multivariate analysis of the data (Pearson correlation and principal component analysis) quantitatively confirmed that: (i) there is a strong covariance between boron contents and several variables representing the salinity of soils (electrolytic conductivity, a variety of alkaline and alkaline?earth total and fraction concentrations). It appears that there is a problem with high boron content in soils, although the salinity is high only for one of the soils (S3); (ii) a significant correlation among irrigation time, lead content (total, fraction easily exchangeable and bound to organic matter and sulfides) and organic carbon in soils was found; (iii) another association among irrigation time, total contents of cadmium, chromium and boron, and organic carbon was observed.