London Earth

London Earth project logo

London Earth is the systematic high-density geochemical soil survey of the Greater London Area (GLA) aiming to give insight into the environmental impacts of urbanisation and industrialisation as well as to characterise the geochemical baseline of the UK's most populous city.

Soil sampling campaigns were carried out from 2005 to 2009, analyses were completed in 2010 and analytical data for over 50 elements is now available under licence.

The soil geochemical data will help to:

  • assess the geochemical background concentration of over 50 elements, including potential harmful elements such as lead (Pb), arsenic (As) or nickel (Ni) in soils of the urban and developed areas
  • inform and support local councils, developers and the general public of any environmental or health risks

London Earth soil geochemistry

Access the London Earth soil geochemistry viewer

A set of ten geochemical maps and short interpretations are available to download for a selection of environmentally sensitive elements (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ca, Fe, Pb, Se, Ni and Zn).

The London Earth soil geochemistry viewer displays interactive geochemical maps for five of these elements (Cu, Ca, Fe, Pb and Ni). Further elements will be added shortly.

Please email us your feedback on the viewer and the information it displays.

London Earth pollution and health Q and A

Click on the links below to access and download pdfs of London Earth soil geochemical maps and interpretations.

Arsenic (As) Cadmium (Cd) Calcium (Ca) Chromium (Cr) Copper (Cu)
Iron (Fe) Lead (Pb) Nickel (Ni) Selenium (Se) Zinc (Zn)
Download all ten geochemical maps

How to license data

BGS Onshore GeoIndexVisit BGS Onshore Geoindex to search for individual soil sample location across Greater London. Make sure the map theme is set to Geochemistry (top right hand corner) and top or profile soil is selected in the left hand panel.

To license data or for any other London Earth-related queries please get in touch with BGS General Enquiries.

Further information

Details on the various campaigns, field operations, sampling procedures or sample site distributions can be obtained from the London Earth field campaign report listed below.

London Earth field campaign report

London earth flyer ( )

London Earth soil sample sites map ( )

Summary table of sample sites per local government district & urban centre ( )