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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Facilitated Transport of Napropamide by Dissolved Organic Matter in Sewage Sludge-Amended Soil


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 27 No. 5, p. 1194-1200
    Received: July 31, 1997

    * Corresponding author(s): ShadN@mail.ucr.edu
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  1. S. D. Nelson *,
  2. J. Letey,
  3. W. J. Farmer,
  4. C. F. Williams and
  5. M. Ben-Hur
  1. Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Center, P.O.B. 6, Bet Dagan, Israel.



The application of sewage sludge to agricultural soils is practiced to minimize landfill disposal. Organic matter amendments to soil are generally thought to improve soil quality, but pesticide application to these soils may lead to groundwater contamination problems. The complexation of pesticides with a water-soluble carrier such as dissolved organic matter (DOM) may facilitate chemical movement through soil. Sewage sludge amendments may lead to greater downward movement of organic chemicals if associated with DOM. Napropamide [2-α-napthoxy)-N,N-diethylpropionamide] was applied to a silt loam soil with (SS) and without (NoSS) sewage sludge application. Laboratory batch equilibrium and soil column studies were performed to determine the potential for herbicide complexation with DOM. Over 98% of the herbicide in soil columns followed typical adsorption and transport behavior as the center of mass of the lower organic matter soil (NoSS) moved twice the depth as that of SS. However, napropamide was detected in the initial leachate eluted from repacked soil columns with steps taken to prevent preferential flow. Napropamide concentrations in the initial leachate of SS were twice that from NoSS with <1.5% of the total applied chemical mass eluting from the bottom of each column. A strong positive relationship was found between napropamide concentration and DOM content in soil leachates. Equilibrium dialysis methods were used to determine that napropamide moving through the soil columns was complexed with DOM. The results show that DOM can facilitate herbicide movement through soil and that sewage sludge-derived DOM may lead to enhanced chemical transport in sludge-amended soils.

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