Research of Heavy Metals on the Agricultural Land in Bajgora Region, Kosovo

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Abstract

For the first time, a survey about agricultural land focusing on the partitioning of the Pb, Cd, and Zn to the rural part of Mitrovica in northern Kosovo was made. Kosovo’s Mitrovica is one of the main industrial sites in the former Yugoslavia and a world-class mining district in Europe. The process of obtaining metals dates since 1927. From this year until 2000, the technological process of acquisition/obtaining has been accompanied by environmental pollution by creating waste landfills. These landfills are located on the outskirts of the city of Mitrovica at a distance from 1 to 4 km. In this area high levels of heavy metals in air, water, and earth were noticed. Therefore, these metal residues have a particular impact on air, earth, water, and effects on plants, animals and humans health. This situation became alarming; therefore in 2000 the production process was discontinued. During the period from 2000 to the present day, there is noticed a change of nature. Residents of the area have begun to work on agricultural lands without realizing the potential risk coming up. Despite the stagnation of industrial production, environmental pollution continues even further, especially from the landfill generated by industrial wastes. Widespread and very visible contamination mainly from Pb, Zn, Cd were found on the ground, with the highest concentrations measured near the Zveçan smelter. A significant amount of Cd, Pb, and Zn in contaminated soils/ground was quite movable/changeable, suggesting that these elements may be readily available for plants and soil/ground organisms. The main objective of this work is to address this pollution and take measures for education and information.

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