Soil biochar amendments: type and dose effects

Ojeda G, Domene X, Mattana S, Sousa JP, Ortiz O, Andrés P, Alcañiz JM (2012) Soil biochar amendments: type and dose effects (Póster). EGU General Assembly. Viena, Austria, 22 -27 April 2012.

Changes in soil bacterial community triggered by drought-induced gap succession preceded changes in soil C stocks and quality

Yuste J.C., Barba J., Fernandez-Gonzalez A.J., Fernandez-Lopez M., Mattana S., Martinez-Vilalta J., Nolis P., Lloret F. (2012) Changes in soil bacterial community triggered by drought-induced gap succession preceded changes in soil C stocks and quality. Ecology and Evolution. 2: 3016-3031.
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Doi: 10.1002/ece3.409

Resum:

The aim of this study was to understand how drought-induced tree mortality and subsequent secondary succession would affect soil bacterial taxonomic composition as well as soil organic matter (SOM) quantity and quality in a mixed Mediterranean forest where the Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) population, affected by climatic drought-induced die-off, is being replaced by Holm-oaks (HO; Quercus ilex). We apply a high throughput DNA pyrosequencing technique and 13C solid-state Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (CP-MAS 13C NMR) to soils within areas of influence (defined as an surface with 2-m radius around the trunk) of different trees: healthy and affected (defoliated) pines, pines that died a decade ago and healthy HOs. Soil respiration was also measured in the same spots during a spring campaign using a static close-chamber method (soda lime). A decade after death, and before aerial colonization by the more competitive HOs have even taken place, we could not find changes in soil C pools (quantity and/or quality) associated with tree mortality and secondary succession. Unlike C pools, bacterial diversity and community structure were strongly determined by tree mortality. Convergence between the most abundant taxa of soil bacterial communities under dead pines and colonizer trees (HOs) further suggests that physical gap colonization was occurring below-ground before above-ground colonization was taken place. Significantly higher soil respiration rates under dead trees, together with higher bacterial diversity and anomalously high representation of bacteria commonly associated with copiotrophic environments (r-strategic bacteria) further gives indications of how drought-induced tree mortality and secondary succession were influencing the structure of microbial communities and the metabolic activity of soils.©2012 The Authors. Ecology and Evolution published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Llegeix més

Soil wetting-drying and water-retention properties in a mine-soil treated with composted and thermally-dried sludges

Ojeda G., Mattana S., Bonmatí M., Woche S.K., Bachmann J. (2011) Soil wetting-drying and water-retention properties in a mine-soil treated with composted and thermally-dried sludges. European Journal of Soil Science. 62: 696-708.
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Doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2389.2011.01378.x

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The main objective of this study was to analyse how different sewage sludges influence soil wetting and drying dynamics. Three composted and three thermally-dried municipal sludges from different wastewater plants located in Catalonia (NE Spain) were mixed with a mine-soil obtained from a limestone quarry. Measurements of the time required to reach zero contact angle () and water holding time (WHT) provided information on the time required for a mine-soil to reach its complete wettability and the residence time of water stored between -0.75 and -25 MPa of soil suction, respectively. One month after sludge amendments, one composted and one thermally-dried sludge significantly increased WHT was increased in the mine-soil treated by composted sludges (50.6% by Blanes' sludge, 65.5% by Manresa's sludge and 52.5% by Vilaseca's sludge) one month after sludge amendments. The amount of water retained in the mine-soil was increased by all composted sludges and one thermally-dried sludge after one month (by 42.3% with Blanes' sludge, 42.3% with Manresa's sludge, 65.7% with Vilaseca's sludge and 23.9% with Mataró's sludge) and one year after sludge amendments and at a small suction. Increments in WHT corresponded with the amount of water retained so the time-scale of soil water availability should also be considered. The value was modified mainly by increments in carbon stock and microbial biomass, while the WHT was modified mainly by increments in pH and electrical conductivity. Under similar air-drying conditions, mine-soil treated with composted sludges retained more water for longer compared with thermally-dried sludges. © 2011 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2011 British Society of Soil Science.

Llegeix més

Drought-resistant fungi control soil organic matter decomposition and its response to temperature

Yuste J.C., Peñuelas J., Estiarte M., Garcia-Mas J., Mattana S., Ogaya R., Pujol M., Sardans J. (2011) Drought-resistant fungi control soil organic matter decomposition and its response to temperature. Global Change Biology. 17: 1475-1486.
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Doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2486.2010.02300.x

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Microbial-mediated decomposition of soil organic matter (SOM) ultimately makes a considerable contribution to soil respiration, which is typically the main source of CO2 arising from terrestrial ecosystems. Despite this central role in the decomposition of SOM, few studies have been conducted on how climate change may affect the soil microbial community and, furthermore, on how possible climate-change induced alterations in the ecology of microbial communities may affect soil CO2 emissions. Here we present the results of a seasonal study on soil microbial community structure, SOM decomposition and its temperature sensitivity in two representative Mediterranean ecosystems where precipitation/throughfall exclusion has taken place during the last 10 years. Bacterial and fungal diversity was estimated using the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism technique. Our results show that fungal diversity was less sensitive to seasonal changes in moisture, temperature and plant activity than bacterial diversity. On the other hand, fungal communities showed the ability to dynamically adapt throughout the seasons. Fungi also coped better with the 10 years of precipitation/throughfall exclusion compared with bacteria. The high resistance of fungal diversity to changes with respect to bacteria may open the controversy as to whether future 'drier conditions' for Mediterranean regions might favor fungal dominated microbial communities. Finally, our results indicate that the fungal community exerted a strong influence over the temporal and spatial variability of SOM decomposition and its sensitivity to temperature. The results, therefore, highlight the important role of fungi in the decomposition of terrestrial SOM, especially under the harsh environmental conditions of Mediterranean ecosystems, for which models predict even drier conditions in the future. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Llegeix més

Wetting process and soil water retention of a minesoil amended with composted and thermally dried sludges

Ojeda G., Mattana S., Alcañiz J.M., Marando G., Bonmatí M., Woche S.K., Bachmann J. (2010) Wetting process and soil water retention of a minesoil amended with composted and thermally dried sludges. Geoderma. 156: 399-409.
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Doi: 10.1016/j.geoderma.2010.03.011

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Composting or thermally-drying sludges are becoming commonly used in soil rehabilitation of degraded land. Sludge amendments increase soil organic matter, but can reduce soil wettability due to hydrophobic compounds. The main objective of this study is to analyse how composted and thermally dried sludges influence soil wettability and water retention properties of a minesoil obtained from limestone extraction during quarrying rehabilitation activities. Three composted (Blanes, Manresa and Vilaseca) and three thermally dried (Besós, Mataró and Sabadell) municipal sludges from different wastewater plants of medium-sized towns located in Catalonia (NE Spain) were mixed with a minesoil and filled into lysimeters The minesoil water retention curves and, the time required for their measurement were analyzed together with various soil key parameters. Throughout the wetting process, three characteristic points of the water retention curve were identified: (i) the air soil dryness point corresponding to a soil suction of - 25 MPa, (ii) the critical point where high suction regime changes to low suction regime, located around - 6 MPa and (iii) the wilting point, corresponding to a soil suction of - 1.5 MPa. One month after sludge amendments (S1), two composted sludges increased the vapour wetting time corresponding to wilting point (twp) of minesoil, while 1 year after sludge amendments (S2) two thermally dried sludges decreased twp. On the other hand, all composted sludges and one thermally dried sludge increased minesoil water retention corresponding to wilting point (wwp) at sampling one (S1), while at sampling two (S2) similar effects were observed except in one composted sludge treatment. Regarding to soil biophysical properties, the addition of composted and thermally dried sludges to minesoil increased total organic carbon, soil-water contact angle, microbial biomass, pH and electrical conductivity at both experimental time scales (S1 and S2), while extractable carbohydrates was only modified at S1. The sludge effects on soil wetting properties and biophysical parameters were dependent on sewage sludge origin and the type of post-treatment. Increases in total organic carbon, extractable carbohydrates, contact angle, microbial biomass or electrical conductivity and decreases in pH corresponded with increases in twp and wwp. It was observed that under similar conditions of water vapour adsorption, minesoil amended with composted sludge could have more difficulties to overcome the permanent wilting point under wetting process. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Llegeix més

Substrate-Induced Respiration of a Sandy Soil Treated with Different Types of Organic Waste.

Mattana S, Ortiz O, Alcañiz JM (2010) Substrate-Induced Respiration of a Sandy Soil Treated with Different Types of Organic Waste. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis 41: 408-423. doi 10.1080/00103620903494368).

Bioassays prove the suitability of mining debris mixed with sewage sludge for land reclamation purposes.

Domene X, Mattana S, Ramírez W, Colón J, Jiménez P, Balanyà T, Alcañiz JM, Bonmatí M (2010) Bioassays prove the suitability of mining debris mixed with sewage sludge for land reclamation purposes. Journal of Soils Sediments 10: 30-44. doi 10.1007/s11368-009-0073-1.

Bioassays prove the suitability of mining debris mixed with sewage sludge for land reclamation purposes

Domene X., Mattana S., Ramírez W., Colón J., Jiménez P., Balanyà T., Alcañiz J.M., Bonmatí M. (2009) Bioassays prove the suitability of mining debris mixed with sewage sludge for land reclamation purposes. Journal of Soils and Sediments. 10: 30-44.
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Doi: 10.1007/s11368-009-0073-1

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Background, aim, and scope: Mining activities disturb land and reduce its capacity to support a complete functional ecosystem. Reclamation activities in this case are not easy due to the large amount of soil required. This is why mining debris are usually used as surrogate of soil, despite their unsuitable physicochemical properties. However, these properties can be improved with the amendment using an organic source, usually sewage sludge. Nevertheless, the use of sludge might lead to impacts on soil and water ecosystems because of its physicochemical properties and pollutant content. The aim of this study is to assess the suitability of the use of mining debris amended with sewage sludge as practice for the reclamation of land degraded by limestone-quarrying activities. Materials and methods: Two different types of mining debris from the same limestone quarry and six different types of composted or thermally dried sewage sludge were studied. A laboratory assessment was carried out by means of standardized bioassays of sludges, together with a field assessment carried out in lysimeters filled with debris-sludge mixtures. The field assessment was carried out using both the soil-waste mixtures, amended with dosages similar to those used for restoration purposes and their corresponding leachates. The variation of physicochemical properties and the outcomes of different bioassays (soil microorganisms biomass and respiration, enzymatic activities, plant emergence and growth, collembolan survival and reproduction, and the Microtox assay) were used as indicators of fertilizing or ecotoxicological effects. Results: The mining debris used in our study showed a poor capacity for biological recovery, as shown by the lower biological outcomes measured in control lysimeters compared to lysimeters amended with sludge. The addition of sludge improved debris just before the sludge application in terms of its physicochemical and biological properties (microorganism's biomass, respiration and enzymatic activities) which, in some cases, persisted after a year. Conversely, in some sludges, an inhibition in soil collembolans was observed just before the amendment, but any inhibitory effect disappeared after a year. Concerning the leachates obtained from field lysimeters after a week and a year, no inhibitory effects were detectable for aquatic bacteria. Discussion: The effects observed on some of the measured biological endpoints, both in laboratory and field assays, were mainly mediated by physicochemical parameters related to a low stability of organic matter, but in the opposite sense depending on the organism considered. Microbial parameters were enhanced when the organic matter added had a low stability (high content in labile organic matter) but, on the other hand, collembolan performance was negatively affected. The lack of toxicity of leachates indicates a low risk for groundwaters of this reclamation practice. Conclusions: The results of this study support the use of mining debris mixed with sludge for land reclamation of degraded land by quarrying. The addition of sludge allowed a quick plant cover re-establishment and provided a suitable habitat for soil biota because no long-term ecotoxicological risks were observed neither for soils nor groundwaters. The results also indicate that the environmental risk of sludges might be reduced using sludges with a high content in stable organic matter. Recommendations and perspectives: The use of mining debris mixed with sewage sludges for mining reclamation purposes is suitable since long-term ecotoxicological risks were not observed. In addition, the results support the suitability of bioassays for the prediction of the success or risk of specific land reclamation practices in order to avoid unsuccessful attempts. © Springer-Verlag 2009.

Llegeix més

Ecological risk assessment of organic waste amendments using the species sensitivity distribution from a soil organisms test battery

Domene X., Ramírez W., Mattana S., Alcañiz J.M., Andrés P. (2008) Ecological risk assessment of organic waste amendments using the species sensitivity distribution from a soil organisms test battery. Environmental Pollution. 155: 227-236.
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Doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2007.12.001

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Safe amendment rates (the predicted no-effect concentration or PNEC) of seven organic wastes were estimated from the species sensitivity distribution of a battery of soil biota tests and compared with different realistic amendment scenarios (different predicted environmental concentrations or PEC). None of the wastes was expected to exert noxious effects on soil biota if applied according either to the usual maximum amendment rates in Europe or phosphorus demands of crops (below 2 tonnes DM ha-1). However, some of the wastes might be problematic if applied according to nitrogen demands of crops (above 2 tonnes DM ha-1). Ammonium content and organic matter stability of the studied wastes are the most influential determinants of the maximum amendment rates derived in this study, but not pollutant burden. This finding indicates the need to stabilize wastes prior to their reuse in soils in order to avoid short-term impacts on soil communities. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Llegeix més

Estimation of safe amendment rates with organic wastes using data from bioassays. In: Sierra et al (editors) Proceedings of the International Meeting on Soil and Wetland Ecotoxicology.

Domene X., Ramírez W, Mattana S, Ortiz O, Alcañiz J, Andrés P (2007) Estimation of safe amendment rates with organic wastes using data from bioassays. In: Sierra et al (editors) Proceedings of the International Meeting on Soil and Wetland Ecotoxicology. SOWETOX 2007, CREAF, UB, UdG and ICEA ISBN 978-84-475-3247-6

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