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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Effects of Soil on Trace Metal Leachability from Papermill Ashes and Sludge


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 28 No. 1, p. 321-333
    Received: Feb 17, 1998

    * Corresponding author(s): qma@gnv.ifas.ufl.edu
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  1. Chengqing Xiao,
  2. Lena Q. Ma * and
  3. Terry Sarigumba
  1. Forest Resources, Georgia-Pacific Corp., Brunswick, GA 31520.



Understanding trace metal leachability is important for successful land application of papermill residues. Trace metal leachability from papermill ashes (Ash 1 and Ash 2) and papermill sludge (Sludge), and the effects of a soil on their leachability were determined by leaching the three papermill residues packed on top of a soil in a column. The leachates were analyzed for pH, electrical conductivity (EC), dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and concentrations of six metals (Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, Se, and Zn). Ash 1 behaved significantly differently from Ash 2 during the leaching experiment, primarily due to its high pH and Na contents. Application of papermill residues significantly increased the pH, EC, and DOC concentrations in leachates, with Ash 1 having significantly greater impacts than Ash 2 and sludge. Soil columns under alkaline leaching of Ash 1 appeared bleached due to the dissolution of solid-phase organic matter. Significant amounts of Zn were leached from all papermill residues, whereas significant amounts of Cr, Se, and Cu were leached only in the Ash 1 treatments. The presence of a soil (especially a Bh horizon) generally enhanced metal leachability in the Ash 1 treatments due to the extremely high pH of Ash 1, whereas it decreased metal leachability in the Ash 2 and sludge treatments. Thus, organic matter enhances metal sorption when present as a solid phase, but it increases metal leachability when present in dissolved form under alkaline conditions.

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