2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 208-40
Presentation Time: 6:45 PM

SOIL LEAD DISTRIBUTION AT A TWO SITES: IMPLICATIONS FOR LEAD SOIL OUTREACH IN THE PROMISE NEIGHBORHOOD, SPRINGFIELD, OH


WILSON, Elizabeth L.1, BRESLIN, Kyle D.1, MARVELLE, Keith A.1, THACKER, Tyler N.1, FORTNER, Sarah K.1 and RITTER, John B.2, (1)Environmental Science, Wittenberg University, Springfield, OH 45501, (2)Geology, Wittenberg University, P.O. Box 720, Springfield, OH 45501, s14.ewilson@wittenberg.edu

Lead contamination is prevalent throughout the United States. Older, low-income housing coupled with an industrial history necessitate the need for lead evaluation, education, and abatement programs in Springfield, Ohio. In our 200-level Environmental Research Methods course we evaluated lead concentrations in soil at two locations. The first site was a residential property, originally built in 1911 and recently renovated, and the second site was an empty re-graded lot where a school once stood. Our goals were to: 1) characterize the distribution of soil lead associated with residential and road sources, 2) evaluate the health risks of our sample sites, and 3) create recommendations for future lead evaluation and education efforts. In total, more than 160 soil samples were collected and analyzed using a handheld XRF. Both sites had samples that fell above the EPA soil standard for lead contamination in play areas (400 ppm). The residential soils exhibited the greatest variability in Pb concentration, ranging from 11-1881 ppm with the highest concentrations close to the house and street. The re-graded lot had Pb concentrations of 2-480 ppm with elevated concentrations found near the busiest intersection, with an average daily traffic count >7000. We recommend that Wittenberg students expand lead evaluation and education efforts within the Promise Neighborhood, a poverty alleviation program targeted for place-based education focused on youth. This neighborhood has older housing and a traffic history that suggests it is at-risk for lead health issues. A Wittenberg student effort within the Promise Neighborhood would provide a hands-on learning opportunity that benefits the community.