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Landscape Geochemistry - Understanding Continental Variations in Soil Characteristics that May Affect Human Health

Soil is literally and figuratively a foundation of human society and may directly affect human health through its ingestion, inhalation, and dermal absorption. The USGS Geochemical Landscapes Project has a long-term goal of conducting a soil geochemical survey of the North American continent. Pilot studies to test and refine sampling and analytical protocols are currently being conducted at both a continental and regional scale. Assessing characteristics of soils that may influence human health are a key component of this project. This includes measurements of concentrations and bioacceessibility of potentially toxic heavy metals (such as chromium, lead, and nickel) in the soils, and the identification of microbial populations (including pathogenic microbes) in the soils.

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Page Last Modified: 05-May-2016@11:32