Pollution Research Paper

Vol. 36, Issue 3, 2017; Page No.(626-631)

A STUDY ON THE HEAVY METAL ACCUMULATION IN WATER, SOIL AND VEGETABLE SAMPLES IN INDUSTRIAL BELT OF VELLORE DISTRICT

BISWADEEP GHATAK, AMAN GAUR, SHASHANK CHOUREY, SAIKAT SINHA RAY, D. SANGEETHA, DEEPA MADATHIL, A. N. BRIJESH NAIR AND A. SIVAKUMAR

Abstract

Chennai (earlier called as Madras) was one of the key trading centers during the British days in India. As many as 14 tanneries out of a total of 25 were in Chennai, are from early 20th century. Later, more leather industries came into existence in and around the city and later grew phenomenally over the years the groundwater in these areas has become intolerably polluted with effluents and high salinity. The surface water sources have also got dried up. These tanneries generate huge quantities of solid wastes and heavy metal pollutants, e.g. Cadmium, hexavalent Chromium, Copper, Nickel and Lead on a regular basis. The concentrations of these pollutants are increasing at an alarming rate. Though there are robust methods for treatment of effluents, these are not affordable by small and medium entrepreneurs who still continue to use old technologies; limited or no treatment of the outgoing industrial effluents and direct disposal of tannery wastes into water-bodies. Ranipet in Vellore District, which has large number of leather processing units, was selected for the study. Water, soil and vegetable samples from this place were collected for analysis and the levels of heavy metals were evaluated using Atomic Absorption Spectrometer. The values obtained were compared with the Standards set up by World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines and the deviations in those concentrations have been highlighted and their effects discussed in detail.

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