First Advisor

Dean Atkinson

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Science and University Honors




Airplanes -- Fuel -- Environmental aspects, Swiss chard, Lead, Food contamination, Community gardens -- Oregon, Airports -- Environmental aspects -- Oregon




Samples of Swiss Chard were collected from four community gardens within a three-mile radius from the Hillsboro Airport in Hillsboro, Oregon. Samples were also collected from a site within a two-mile radius of the airport, as well as a removed site in McMinnville, OR. Samples were analyzed using Anodic Stripping Voltammetry (ASV) to quantify the lead content from each site. The highest concentration of lead was from the site within a two-mile radius of the airport with a value of 8.9 X 10-4 micrograms of lead per gram of sample. The lowest site concentration was 3.9 X 10-5 micrograms per gram from Sonrise Community Garden. A Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) value established by the Joint Executive Council on Food Additives, World Health Organization, and the Food and Agriculture Organization was considered a safe threshold in this study. Lead content found in samples indicate that it would require the consumption of hundreds of pounds of Swiss Chard a day to exceed safe Pb levels. There was a negative correlation between lead concentration and distance from the Hillsboro Airport (Multiple R = -.67) This study suggests the combustion of aviation fuel plays a very small role in the extent of lead exposure in Swiss Chard grown near flight-training facilities using aviation fuel.


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