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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 40 No. 1, p. 67-75
     
    Received: May 21, 2010
    Published: Jan, 2011


    * Corresponding author(s): kkostya@vt.edu
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doi:10.2134/jeq2010.0234

Transformations of Nitrogen and Carbon in Entrenched Biosolids at a Reclaimed Mineral Sands Mining Site

  1. K. I. Kostyanovsky *a,
  2. G. K. Evanylob,
  3. K. K. Lasleyb,
  4. C. Shangb,
  5. B. F. Sukkariyahb and
  6. W. L. Danielsb
  1. a Texas AgriLife Research & Extension Center, 1509 Aggie Dr., Beaumont, TX 77713
    b Dep. of Crop and Soil Environmental Sciences, Smyth Hall, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State Univ., Blacksburg, VA, 24061-0403. Assigned to Associate Editor Christopher Green

Abstract

Biosolids deep-row incorporation (DRI) provides high levels of nutrients to the reclamation sites; however, additions of N in excess of the vegetation requirements can potentially impair water quality. The effects of anaerobically digested (AD) and lime stabilized (LS) DRI biosolids and inorganic N fertilizer were compared on C and N transformations and transport at a reclaimed mineral sands mining site. Biosolids were applied at 213 and 426 Mg AD biosolids ha−1 and 328 and 656 Mg LS biosolids ha−1 (dry mass), and inorganic N fertilizer was applied at 0 (control) and 504 kg N ha−1 yr−1 Zero tension lysimeters were installed to collect leachate for determination of vertical N transport, and the biosolids seams were analyzed for N and C transformations after 28 mo aging. The leaching masses from the DRI biosolids treatments were 139 to 291 kg ha−1 NO3–N, 61 to 243 kg ha−1 NH4–N, and 61 to 269 kg ha−1 organic N, while the fertilizer treatment did not differ from the control. Aged biosolids analysis showed that total N lost over the course of 2 yr was 15.2 Mg ha−1 and 10.9 Mg ha−1 for LS and AD biosolids, respectively, which was roughly 50% of the N applied. Organic C losses were 81 Mg ha−1 and 33 Mg ha−1 for LS and AD biosolids, respectively. Our results indicated that entrenchment of biosolids in coarse-textured media should not be used as a mined land reclamation technique because the anaerobic conditions required to limit mineralization and nitrification cannot be maintained in such permeable soils.

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Copyright © 2011. American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Soil Science SocietyAmerican Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America