Impact of organic amendments (biochar, compost and peat) on Cd and Zn mobility and solubility in contaminated soil of the Campine region after three years

C. E. Egene, R. Van Poucke, Yong Sik Ok, E. Meers, F. M.G. Tack

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To determine the long-term impact of organic amendments on metal (Cd and Zn) immobilization, soil from the Campine region was amended with holm oak-derived biochar, compost, and peat, and monitored over a 3-year period. Pot experiments were conducted by mixing the amendments independently at 2% and 4% (g/g) with the soil. The mobility and solubility of metals in the treatments were assessed by means of rhizon soil moisture samplers, sequential BCR extractions, and diffusive gradient in thin films (DGT). Over the three-year period, the 2% biochar addition resulted in an average decrease in pore water concentration of 40% for Cd and 48% for Zn whereas the 4% addition led to an average decrease of 66% for Cd and 77% for Zn. The immobilization effect in the biochar treatments was attributed to the consistently higher pH and lower concentrations of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the soil. The latter may have been caused by sorption of DOC onto the surface of biochar thereby increasing its negatively charged functional groups that are able to sorb cations. On the other hand, compost and peat had the unwanted effect of significantly increasing the concentrations of Cd and Zn in the soil pore water. This was partly due to the formation of soluble organo-metallic complexes as significantly higher DOC concentrations were found in the compost and peat treatments. Results from the DGT measurements, after a 24 h deployment time, revealed a low resupply (R ≤ 0.4) of Cd and Zn from the solid phase to the soil solution in both amended and unamended soil. This suggests a case of slow metal desorption kinetics in the soil that was relatively unchanged by the presence of organic amendments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-202
Number of pages8
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume626
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jun 1

Keywords

  • Black carbon
  • Charcoal
  • Diffusive gradient in thin films
  • Dissolved organic carbon
  • Metal contamination
  • Soil remediation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

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