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Revista de Ciências Agrárias

Print version ISSN 0871-018X


GODINHO, B.; ABREU, M.M.  and  MAGALHAES, M.C.. Biogeochemistry evaluation of soils and arbutus trees in the Panasqueira mine area. Rev. de Ciências Agrárias [online]. 2010, vol.33, n.1, pp.226-235. ISSN 0871-018X.

Panasqueira mine is one of the most im­portant mines in Portugal. Over the last cen­tury exploration of tungsten, copper and tin has contributed to produce many waste ma­terials that constitute tailings with huge di­mensions generating high visual and chemi­cal impacts. The objective of this work was to study the biogeochemical impact of min­ing on the soils and arbutus trees (Arbutus unedo L.) in this area. Soils developed on waste materials or hosted rocks are contaminated with (mg kg-1) As (922), Cd (3), Cu (215), Pb (77), W (138) and Zn (260). In plants, cadmium is the only element that exceeded the vege­tation tolerant limit, but none of the sampled plants showed visual signs of toxicity. Ar­butus tree seems to be tolerant to the high soil concentrations (total and available frac­tion) of the hazardous elements. Therefore arbutus trees can be used in phytostabiliza­tion as a soil remediation strategy. Further studies could also allow the use of their fruits for alcohol production.

Keywords : contaminated soils; Panasqueira; phytostabilization; arbutus tree; tungsten.

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