Lead pollution of shooting range soils

  • Nicholas Sehube
  • Rosemary Kelebemang
  • Otlogetswe Totolo
  • Masego Laetsang
  • Obed Kamwi
  • Pogisego Dinake
Keywords: Soil pollution, Pb, berm, ammunition, shooting range


Atotal of eight military shooting ranges were used for this study. Soil samples were collected at each of the eight shooting ranges at the berm, target line, 50 and 100 m from berm. In all of the shooting ranges investigated the highest total lead (Pb) concentrations were found in the bermsoils. Elevated Pb concentrations of 38 406.87 mg kg–1 were found in the bermsoils of TAB shooting range. Most of the shooting range soils contained high levels of Pb in the range above 2000mg kg–1 far exceeding the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) critical value of 400mg kg–1. The predominant weathering products in these shooting ranges were cerussite (PbCO3) and hydrocerussite (Pb3(CO3)2(OH)2). The Synthetic Precipitation Leaching Procedure (SPLP) Pb concentrations exceeded the USEPA 0.015 mg kg–1 critical level of hazardous waste indicating possible contamination of surface and groundwater.

Keywords: Soil pollution, Pb, berm, ammunition, shooting range


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eISSN: 0379-4350