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International Journal of Environment Science and Technology
Center for Environment and Energy Research and Studies (CEERS)
ISSN: 1735-1472
EISSN: 1735-2630
Vol. 11, No. 5, 2014, pp. 1353-1364
Bioline Code: st14132
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

International Journal of Environment Science and Technology, Vol. 11, No. 5, 2014, pp. 1353-1364

 en Role of rhizosphere and soil properties for the phytomanagement of a salt marsh polluted by mining wastes
Conesa, H.M.; María-Cervantes, A.; Álvarez-Rogel, J. & González-Alcaraz, M.N.

Abstract

The goal of this study was to evaluate the soil properties and their modifications within the rhizosphere of spontaneous vegetation as key factors to assess the phytomanagement of a salt marsh polluted by mining wastes. A field survey was performed based on a plot sampling design. The results provided by the analyses of rhizospheric soil (pH, electrical conductivity (EC), organic carbon, total nitrogen, etc.) and metal(loid)s’ phytoavailability (assessed by EDTA) were discussed and related to plant metal uptake. The averages of pH and EC values of the bulk soil and rhizospheric samples were in the range of neutral to slightly alkaline (pH 7–8) to saline (> 2 dS m-1), respectively. Heavy metal and As concentrations (e.g. ~600 mg kg-1 As, ~50 mg kg-1 Cd, ~11,000 mg kg-1 Pb) were higher in the rhizosphere for both total and EDTA-extractable fraction. Phragmites australis check for this species in other resources uptaked the highest concentrations in roots (e.g. ~66 mg kg-1 As, ~1,770 mg kg-1 Zn) but not in shoots, for which most of plant species showed low values for Zn (<300 mg kg-1) but not for Cd (> 0.5 mg kg-1) or Pb (~20–40 mg kg-1). Vegetation distribution in the studied salt marsh looked to be more affected by salinity than by metal pollution. The free availability of water for plants and the incoming nutrient-enriched effluents which flow through the salt marsh may have hindered the metal(loid)s’ phytotoxicity. The phytomanagement of these polluted areas employing the spontaneous vegetation is a good option in order to improve the ecological indicators and to prevent the transport of pollutants to nearby areas.

Keywords
Arsenic; Heavy metals; Mining pollution; Phytoavailability; Salinity; Salt marshes

 
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