EFFECT OF THE APPLICATION OF SEWAGE SLUDGE COMPOST ON THE CONTENT AND LEACHING OF ZINC AND COPPER FROM SOILS UNDER AGRICULTURAL USE
 
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Department of Agricultural Chemistry and Environmental Protection, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Oczapowskiego 8, 10-744 Olsztyn, Poland
Publication date: 2014-12-06
 
J. Ecol. Eng. 2015; 16(1):1–7
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ABSTRACT
Municipal sewage sludge can be used in agriculture provided that the permissible levels of heavy metals are not exceeded in either the sewage sludge or in the top layer of soil to be amended by this substance, and that its application does not deteriorate the soil quality. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of different forms of sewage sludge on the content of Cu and Zn in soil and in soil leachate. The study comprised 2 rotations (potato, spring barley, winter oilseed rape, winter wheat). Each series was composed of the following treatments: NPK, FYM, municipal sewage sludge composted with straw, dried and granulated municipal sewage. FYM and composted sewage were applied once in the rotation (under potato) in a dose of 10 Mg d.m. ha-1 and twice (under potato and under winter oilseed rape) in a dose of 5 Mg d.m. ha-1. In the other years (under spring barley and winter wheat), soil received only mineral fertilization. In order to evaluate the effect of the composts on the leaching of Cu and Zn from soil, a lysimetric experiment was conducted under controlled conditions. Before the experiment, the soil content of Cu was low (1.47 mg kg-1) and Zn was medium (10.11 mg kg-1). The content of copper in the composts ranged from 4.5 to 340.1 mg kg-1 d.m. and that of zinc was from 109.5 to 1310.1 mg kg-1 d.m. The composted sewage sludge significantly raised the soil content of available forms of Cu and Zn, but did not change the soil nutrient abundance class. Fertilization modified the content of the microelements in the soil leachate.