The aim of the present study was to investigate on serpentinite rocks and related derivative soil samples in order to understand their potential contribution to the health problems caused by asbestos exposure. With this intent, agricultural soil samples as well as serpentinite rocks from which soils derive have been collected at San Severino Lucano village (Basilicata region, southern Italy); this site was chosen because of spatially isolated from other urban centers as well as any factory. In our study, we adopted different analytical techniques such as Polarized Light Microscopy (PLM), X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF), X-Ray Powder Diffraction (XRPD) and Scanning and Electron Microscopy combined with Energy Dispersive Spectrometry (SEM/EDS). Results pointed out as all of the collected soil samples contain asbestos minerals (e.g., chrysotile, tremolite-actinolite), clay minerals, plagioclase and oxides in various amounts. In our opinion, since the dispersion of fibres could be associated with carcinogenic lung cancer, in areas where Natural Occurring Asbestos (NOA) can be found, the institutions should publish local maps indicating areas with mineralogical concern and take precautions to avoid hazardous exposure of population. The concentration levels of four toxic elements (Cr, Co, Ni, V) in almost all the serpentinite rocks and their derivative soils developed within San Severino Lucano village exceeds the regulatory thresholds for public, private and residential green use.

Serpentinite-derived soils in southern Italy: Potential for hazardous exposure

Punturo, Rosalda;Apollaro, Carmine;De Rosa, Rosanna;Bloise, Andrea
2018

Abstract

The aim of the present study was to investigate on serpentinite rocks and related derivative soil samples in order to understand their potential contribution to the health problems caused by asbestos exposure. With this intent, agricultural soil samples as well as serpentinite rocks from which soils derive have been collected at San Severino Lucano village (Basilicata region, southern Italy); this site was chosen because of spatially isolated from other urban centers as well as any factory. In our study, we adopted different analytical techniques such as Polarized Light Microscopy (PLM), X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF), X-Ray Powder Diffraction (XRPD) and Scanning and Electron Microscopy combined with Energy Dispersive Spectrometry (SEM/EDS). Results pointed out as all of the collected soil samples contain asbestos minerals (e.g., chrysotile, tremolite-actinolite), clay minerals, plagioclase and oxides in various amounts. In our opinion, since the dispersion of fibres could be associated with carcinogenic lung cancer, in areas where Natural Occurring Asbestos (NOA) can be found, the institutions should publish local maps indicating areas with mineralogical concern and take precautions to avoid hazardous exposure of population. The concentration levels of four toxic elements (Cr, Co, Ni, V) in almost all the serpentinite rocks and their derivative soils developed within San Severino Lucano village exceeds the regulatory thresholds for public, private and residential green use.
Heavy metals; NOA; Serpentinite-derived soil; Southern Italy; Geology; Stratigraphy
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/286161
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