Document Type


Publication Date



Soils--Lead content; Soils--Analysis; Urban soils


The focus of this field study was the development of a soil collection and analysis method for the rapid assessment of urban lead (Pb) buildup in four Minnesota cities, Minneapolis, St. Paul, Duluth, and Rochester. The results show that soil Pb buildup is mainly a function of urban size, although specific geographic factors, such as a bluff that constrains city development along a narrow corridor, also play a role in Pb distribution and concentration. Maximum urban Pb concentrations were approximately 25, 70, and 100 times rural soil Pb levels, in Rochester, Duluth, and the centers of Minneapolis and St. Paul respectively. The primary source of Pb measured in this study was assumed to be Pb aerosols exhausted from the use of leaded gasoline during the past four or five decades. A portion of the total state Pb exhausts were estimated for each city from state daily vehicle mile (DVM) data. The chain of movement which exposes children to excessive Pb levels from aerosol accumulations in the soil is described along with the remedy to alleviate continued urban Pb buildup.

First Page


Last Page


Primo Type


Included in

Soil Science Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.