Some of the heavy metals, (arsenic, cadmium, chromium and nickel) tend to endanger public health, when found above critical limits in soil and water, becoming carcinogenic. The heavy metals are taken by humans through the food chain. As shown by numerous researchers all over the world, the heavy metal contamination mostly come from sewage waters and pesticides, as well as naturally. The natural resources come from the composition of the rock formations present at the area of study. One or all of the above mentioned sources of heavy metal contamination may be present. The study concentrates on the internationally accepted critical limits for soil and water, explains scientific methods of entering into vegetables and fruit, and also tries to shed light on the transfer factors of heavy metals imposing dangers on public health. Remediation of the contaminated soil and water is also discussed, and phytoremediation methods are brought forward, as compared with chemical methods. Details of different phytoremediation (phyto-accumulation, phyto-stabilization, phyto-degradation, phyto-volatilization, and hydraulic control) are also discussed. Actual case studies from North Cyprus are also provided, with real contamination levels observed. Different areas and soil/water/plant species were assessed in detail, displaying concentrations, critical limits, transfer factors, and recommendations.
Part of the book: Heavy Metal Toxicity in Public Health