Spatial prediction and influencing factors identification of potential toxic element contamination in soil of different karst landform regions using integration model


The prediction of contamination distribution of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in soils of Guangxi province, China and the identification of their controlling factors pose great challenges due to diverse bedrock types, intense leaching and weathering, and discontinuous terrain distributions. Herein, we integrated the random forest (RF) and empirical Bayesian kriging (EBK) to interpret and predict complex PTEs contamination distribution from three different karst landform regions (fenglin, fengcong, isolated peak plain) in Guangxi province. The modeling results are compared with the commonly used ordinary kriging and regression-kriging. In this study, our developed RF-EBK model combines the advantages of the RF and EBK model to promote the prediction accurately and efficiently. In this study, it was shown that the integration RF-EBK model exhibited desirable for Cd and As concentrations, with R2 of 0.89 and 0.83, respectively. The average RMSE and MAE of integration RF-EBK model decreased by 39% and 44%, respectively, relative to the regression-kriging with the second highest accuracy. Furthermore, the modeling results showed that approximately 41.96% and 18.96% of total area was classified as Cd and As polluted and above regions (Igeo >0) in Guangxi province, respectively. Higher Cd concentration was observed in the soil of fenglin and fengcong regions than that in isolated peak plain region due to the secondary enrichment and parent rock inheritance, while the As concentration exhibited no significant difference among the three regions. The modeling results indicated that the elevated Cd concentration might be associated with soil CaO concentration and alkaline soil environment, whereas As concentration tended to be increased with the elevating Fe2O3 concentrations in weakly acidic soil environment. This result confirmed the applicability and effectiveness of integration model in predicting complex spatial patterns of soil PTEs and identifying their controlling factors.

Authors: Bolun Zhang, Hong Hou, Lingling Liu, Zhanbin Huang, Long Zhao
; Full Source: Chemosphere 2023 Mar 15;138404. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2023.138404.