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Revista internacional de contaminación ambiental

versión impresa ISSN 0188-4999


MANCILLA-VILLA, Óscar Raúl et al. Total heavy metals and arsenic in irrigation water of Puebla and Veracruz, Mexico. Rev. Int. Contam. Ambient [online]. 2012, vol.28, n.1, pp. 39-48. ISSN 0188-4999.

High levels of heavy metal concentrations in water used for irrigation are a major concern for agriculture, human health and biodiversity. A study of surface water quality of rivers and springs of Puebla and Veracruz, Mexico was made. The study was conducted from November 2009 to March 2010. Sampling consisted of two repetitions. Parameters such as potential hydrogen (pH), electrical conductivity (EC), As and total heavy metals: Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb and Zn were analyzed. Heavy metals were determined using a Perkin Elmer Optima 5300 ICP ("Inductively Coupled Plasma"). The methods used were the recommended by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and APHA (American Public Health Association). The surface water quality was compared with the criteria of NOM-001-ECOL-1996, EPA (1986), SEDUE (1989) and modification of NOM-127-SSA1-1994. It was observed the presence of low levels of heavy metals in water for agricultural irrigation and urban use. However the criterion for human consumption was exceeded because 50 % of the waters sampled had levels above maximum allowable limits for Cd, 20 % for Hg and 2 % for Pb (SSA 2000). It was concluded that surface waters sampled do not represent risks for agricultural irrigation. The highest concentration and dispersion was for As, with values from 0.0 to 0.078 mg L-1, while the lowest with 0.0 to 0.03 mg L-1, was for the Hg. Wastewater discharges on rivers, pollute to levels that exceed the permissible limits for Cd, Hg and Pb in drinking water.

Palabras llave : heavy metals; surface water; allowable limits.

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