Determination and Assessment of Lead in Olive Fruits, Leaves and Soils of Selected Areas in North Lebanon Hosting Major Industrial Sites

Pierre OBEID, Mira YOUNIS, Bilal EL-KHOURY, Samer AOUAD, John Hanna EL-NAKAT


The aim of this study is to determine and compare the lead (Pb) content in olive leaves, fruits, and soils around the root zone from different areas in North Lebanon for the first time. The selected areas of study have been chosen based on; the presence of major industrial sites, wind direction and heavy traffic. Physiochemical parameters such as pH, percent organic matter (%OM), and percent CaCO3, which normally affect, the mobility of heavy metals in the soil, have been investigated. In addition, the variations in the topography and its effects have been discussed. For olives, the washed fruits contained lower levels in comparison to the unwashed ones, while the highest concentration of Pb (0.0494 mg/kg) was found in fruits sampled from Hamat (Ha). As for the leaves, Hamat (Ha), Bweb Lhawa (Bw), and Hraishi (Hr) showed some of the highest levels of Pb of around 0.3 mg/kg. Similarly, the washed leaves exhibited lower levels of lead. In the soil samples, the levels of lead were highest in Kfarsaroun (Kf) at both depths (0 - 15 and 15 - 30 cm). The levels of Pb were higher at a depth of 0 - 15 cm in all locations as opposed to the 15 - 30 cm depth. The mean pH of all soils was found to be 7.61 at 0 - 15 cm and 7.71 at 15 - 30 cm with a range of 7.19 - 7.9 and 7.1 - 8.1, respectively. The mean % OM was 3.14 and 2.59 at 0 - 15 cm and 15 - 30 cm with a range of 1.27 - 5.60 and 1.00 - 4.05, respectively. As for the % CaCO3, the mean was 18.72 at 0 - 15 cm and 18.21 at 15 - 30 cm with a range of 0.78 - 64.83 and 0.71 - 64.73, respectively.



GFAAS, Pb, topography, soil, olives

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