Heavy metal concentrations in soil in the vicinity of former ironworks in Spodnja Radovna, Slovenia


  • Tamara Ferjan Stanič
  • Mihael Brenčič
  • Nina Zupančič




Mining and ore processing represent one of the main anthropogenic sources of heavy metals in Slovenia. To determine the environmental impact of iron ore processing activity in Spodnja Radovna, which fished at the end of the 19th century, a sampling campaign was carried out in the area of ironworks and along the river Radovna next to the ironworks. 45 soil samples were collected in three grids at various distances (10, 60 and 110 m) from the former blast furnace location and in two cross-valley profiles stretching from Pokljuka to Mežakla plateau. Along the river Radovna samples were collected 200 m upstream and downstream from the location of blast furnace. The analysis of heavy metal distribution in soil in the area of former ironworks and its vicinity confirmed the influence of former activities on the environment, since elevated concentrations of heavy metals, a distinctive feature of iron industry and tailings, were detected in a quite narrow area around iron foundry. While Cd and Pb indicate areal load of heavy metals in soil, concentrations of As, Cu, Hg and Zn are typical of point pollution sources, where the officially allowed limit and warning values are exceeded. The most significant threat to the environment as a consequence of iron ore processing activities are therefore sources of point pollution (tailings locations) in the ironworks area.


How to Cite

Ferjan Stanič, T., Brenčič, M., & Zupančič, N. (2013). Heavy metal concentrations in soil in the vicinity of former ironworks in Spodnja Radovna, Slovenia. Geologija, 56(2), 229–241. https://doi.org/10.5474/geologija.2013.015