Analysis of Heavy Metals in Soils and Plants Along Roadsides in Lafia, Nigeria

Gbenga Akomolafe, Amaka Nkemdy

Transactions on Science and Technology, 7(3), 101 - 107.

Back to main issue

The menace of air pollution through vehicular movements in many urban cities across the world has increased tremendously. This study aimed at determining the heavy metal accumulation in soils and plants growing by the roadside in Lafia, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. Two common plants (Hyptis suaveolens and Urena lobata) by the roadsides together with the soils were sampled using a simple stratified random sampling technique. Sampling was done at three locations (0m, 10m and 20m) away from three most plied highways in Lafia. The concentrations of the heavy metals (Lead (Pb), Copper (Cu) and Zinc (Zn)) were determined in all the samples in triplicates using standard methods. The results revealed varying concentrations of the heavy metals in the soils and plants at the three study sites. The concentration of Cu in the soils and plants ranged from 0.08 – 0.4ppm and 0.1 – 0.4ppm respectively while that of Zn in soils and plants ranges from 0.1 – 1.5ppm and 0.1 – 1.3ppm respectively. The pattern of concentrations of the heavy metals in both the soils and plants are in the order of Pb < Cu < Zn across all the sites. Even though there was no significant difference in the heavy metals concentrations between 0m, 10m and 20m away from the road sides, the metals are still more concentrated at the 0m of the sites. Pb was found to be below the detection limit at most of the sites.

KEYWORDS: Air pollution; Hyptis suaveolens; Lafia; Phytoremediation; Urena lobata

Download this PDF file

  1. Abdulhamid, Y., Abdulsalam, M.S., Matazu, I.K. & Suleiman, A.B. 2017. Phytoremediation of Some Heavy Metals in Industrially Contaminated Dumpsite Soil by Hyptis suaveolens and Physalis philadelphica. Katsina Journal of Natural and Applied Sciences, 6(1), 168-178.
  2. Abechi, E. S., Okunola, O. J., Zubairu, S. M. J., Usman, A. A. & Apene, E. 2010. Evaluation of heavy metals in roadside soils of major streets in Jos metropolis, Nigeria. Journal of Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology, 2(6), 98-102.
  3. Abidemi, I. O., Bosede, O. M. & Oladele, O. 2014. Lead and cadmium phytoremediation potentials of plants from four lead smelting slags contaminated sites. Natural Environment, 2(3), 33-38.
  4. Agbaire, P.O. & Esiefarienrhe, E. 2009. Air pollution tolerance indices (apti) of some plants around otorogun gas plant in delta state, Nigeria. Journal of Applied Science and Environmental Management, 13, 11-14.
  5. Akomolafe, G. F. & Lawal, S. 2019. Heavy metal accumulation in some plants growing at polluted soils in Lafia, Nigeria. FUDMA Journal of Sciences, 3(2), 9-14.
  6. Augustine, A. U., Onwuka, J. C. & Albert, C. Q. 2016. Determination of heavy metal concentration in Neem (Azadirachta indica) leaves, bark and soil along some major roads in Lafia, Nasarawa State Nigeria. Journal of Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology, 8(5), 38-43.
  7. Ayodele, J. T. & Gaya, U. M. 1998. Chromium Manganese and Zinc in Kano Municipality Street dust. Journal of Chemical Society of Nigeria, 23, 24-34.
  8. Dolan, L. M. J., Van Bohemen, H., Whelan, P., Akbar, K. F., O’Malley, V., O’Leary, G. & Keizer, P. J. 2006. Towards the sustainable development of modern road ecosystem. In: Davenport, J. & John, L. (eds.). The ecology of transportation: managing mobility for the environment. Dordrecht: Springer.
  9. Feng, J., Wang, Y., Zhao, J., Zhu, L., Bian, X. & Zhang, W. 2011. Source attributions of heavy metals in rice plant along highway in Eastern China. Journal of Environmental Sciences, 23(7), 1158-1164.
  10. Garner, J. H. B. 2002. Air Pollutants, Plant Response, Soil Microbes and Ecosystem biodiversity. Environment News, 8(3),1-7.
  11. Jaradat, Q. M. & Moman, K. A. 1999. Contamination of roadside soil, Plants, and air with heavy metals in Jordan. A Comparative Study. Turkish Journal of Chemistry, 23, 209-220.
  12. Kambezidis, H. D., Adamopoulos, A. D. & Gueymard, C., 1996. Total NO2 column amount over Athens, Greece in 1996–97. Atmospheric Research, 57, 1–8.
  13. Keshavarzi, B., Moore, F., Ansari, M., Mehr, M. R., Kaabi, H. & Kermani, M. 2015. Macronutrients and trace metals in soil and food crops of Isfahan Province, Iran. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 187(1), 4113.
  14. Liu, Y.J. & Ding, H. 2008. Variation in air pollution tolerance index of plants near a steel factory: Implications for landscape-plant species selection for industrial areas. WSEAS Transactions on Environment Development, 4, 24-32.
  15. Liu, W. X., Shen, L. F., Liu, J. W., Wang, Y. W. & Li, S. R. 2007. Uptake of toxic heavy metals by rice (Oryza sativa L.) cultivated in the agricultural soil near Zhengzhou City, People’s Republic of China. Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, 79(2), 209-213.
  16. Sawidis, T., Chettri, M.K., Papaioannou, A., Zachariadis, A. & Stratis. J., 2001. A study of metal distribution from lignite fuels using trees as biological monitors. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 48, 27–35.
  17. Schwela, D. 2000. Air pollution and health in urban areas. Reviews on Environmental Health, 15(12), 13-42.
  18. Shahid, M., Dumat, C., Khalid, S., Schreck, E., Xiong, T. & Niazi, N. K. 2017. Foliar heavy metal uptake, toxicity and detoxification in plants: A comparison of foliar and root metal uptake. Journal of hazardous materials, 325, 36-58.
  19. Shaw, J. 1989. Heavy metal tolerance in plants: evolutionary aspects. CRC press.
  20. Sivakumar, P., Kanagappan, M. & Das, S. S. M. 2016. Phytoremediation of tannery waste polluted soil using Hyptis suaveolens (Lamiaceae). International Journal of Pure and Applied Bioscience, 4(1), 265-272.
  21. Sulaiman, F. R. & Hamzah, H. A. 2018. Heavy metals accumulation in suburban roadside plants of a tropical area (Jengka, Malaysia). Ecological Processes, 7(1), 28.
  22. Tripathi, A. & Misra, D. R. 2013. Bioaccumulation of Pb, Ni and Zn in some plant species growing in and around a municipal waste dumpsite at Allahabad, India. The Journal of Solid Waste Technology and Management, 39(1), 1-12.
  23. Ugolini, F., Tognetti, R., Raschi, A. & Bacci, L. 2013. Quercus ilex L. as bioaccumulator for heavy metals in urban areas: effectiveness of leaf washing with distilled water and considerations on the trees distance from traffic. Urban forestry & urban greening, 12(4), 576-584.
  24. Woo, S. Y., Lee, D. K. & Lee, Y.K. 2007. Net photosynthetic rate, ascorbate peroxidase and glutathione reductase activities of Erythrina orientalis in polluted and non-polluted areas. Photosynthetica, 45, 293-295.
  25. WHO. 2006. Air quality guidelines for particulate matter, ozone, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide. Global update 2005. WHO Regional Office for Europe, Copenhagen, Denmark.
  26. Yahaya, M. I., Ezeh, M. I., Musa, Y. F. & Mohammad, S. Y. 2010. Analysis of heavy metals concentration inroad sides soil in Yauri, Nigeria. African Journal of Pure and Applied Chemistry, 4(3), 22-30.
  27. Zhang, M., Yan, X. D., Zhang, F., Zeng, C. & Devkota, L. C. P. 2012. Factorial analysis of heavy metal concentration in roadside farmland plants around Kathmandu, Nepal. In: Mingjin, C., Huizhong, X., Zhilin, J., Yun, F. & Jiangping, X. (eds.). Applied Mechanics and Materials. Trans Tech Publications Ltd.