Capra, Gian Franco and Vacca, Sergio and Cabula, Emanuela and Grilli, Eleonora and Buondonno, Andrea (2011) Pedogenic Background Concentration (PBC) of Potentially Toxic Elements (PTE) in an industrial area: a proposal for a new pedological-oriented approach in the evaluation of Ambient Background Concentration (ABC). In: 6. International congress of European Society for Soil Conservation: innovative strategies and policies for soil conservation, 9-14 May 2011, Thessaloniki, Greece. Thessaloniki, National Agricultural Research Foundation. p. 30. ISBN 978-960-88296-9-5. Conference or Workshop Item.
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According to the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), the Ambient Background Concentration (ABC) or “usual background concentration” generally consists of both a natural pedo-geochemical fraction and a moderate diffuse anthropogenic fraction. There is as yet no agreed method by which to estimate a local or soil-type specific ABC, but three main methods are usually accepted worldwide. The first method, generally used to assess changes on a local and regional scale, is based on the evaluation of mean and range values of Potentially Toxic Element (PTE) concentrations in surface horizons of soil taxonomical units calculated from existing databases. Another method, referred to as the “enrichment factos approach”, involves taking metal concentrations measured in the deeper soil horizon (C horizons) as the local background for surface horizons.
The third approach uses the relationships between trace elements and demi-conservative elements such as Fe, Al and Mn to predict forecast values of trace elements in top soils. All these methods are mainly based on a geochemical approach aiming to assess the values observed in the surface horizons (mainly A horizons), while less attention, or indeed an entire lack of data, has been gerenally observed on sub-surface and deep pedogenic horizons.
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