Author(s): Mndez A, Gmez A, PazFerreiro J, Gasc G
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Abstract Pyrolytic conversion of sewage sludge into biochar could be a sustainable management option for Mediterranean agricultural soils. The aim of this work is to evaluate the effects of biochar from sewage sludge pyrolysis on soil properties; heavy metals solubility and bioavailability in a Mediterranean agricultural soil and compared with those of raw sewage sludge. Biochar (B) was prepared by pyrolysis of selected sewage sludge (SL) at 500°C. The pyrolysis process decreased the plant-available of Cu, Ni, Zn and Pb, the mobile forms of Cu, Ni, Zn, Cd and Pb and also the risk of leaching of Cu, Ni, Zn and Cd. A selected Mediterranean soil was amended with SL and B at two different rates in mass: 4\% and 8\%. The incubation experiment (200 d) was conducted in order to study carbon mineralization and trace metal solubility and bioavailability of these treatments. Both types of amendments increased soil respiration with respect to the control soil. The increase was lower in the case of B than when SL was directly added. Metals mobility was studied in soil after the incubation and it can be established that the risk of leaching of Cu, Ni and Zn were lower in the soil treated with biochar that in sewage sludge treatment. Biochar amended samples also reduced plant availability of Ni, Zn, Cd and Pb when compared to sewage sludge amended samples. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Chemosphere
and referenced in International Journal of Waste Resources