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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract - Special Submissions: Nonpoint Source Pollution, Environmental Quality, and Ecosystem Health in China

Potential Risks of Copper, Zinc, and Cadmium Pollution due to Pig Manure Application in a Soil–Rice System under Intensive Farming: A Case Study of Nanhu, China


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 40 No. 6, p. 1695-1704
    Received: July 16, 2010

    * Corresponding author(s): wujianjun@zju.edu.cn
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  1. Jiachun Shia,
  2. Xiulin Yua,
  3. Mingkui Zhanga,
  4. Shenggao Lua,
  5. Weihong Wu *b,
  6. Jianjun Wu *a and
  7. Jianming Xu *a
  1. a Zhejiang Provincial Key Lab. of Subtropical Soil and Plant Nutrition, College of Environmental and Resource Sciences, Zhejiang Univ., Hangzhou 310029, China
    b Dep. of Environmental Science and Engineering, Hangzhou Dianzi Univ., Hangzhou 310018, China. Assigned to Associate Editor C.A. Grant


Heavy metal (copper [Cu], zinc [Zn], and cadmium [Cd]) pollution of soils from pig manures in soil–rice (Oryza sativa L.) systems under intensive farming was investigated, taking Nanhu, China, as the case study area. Two hundred pig manures and 154 rice straws, brown rice samples, and corresponding surface soil (0–15 cm) samples were collected in paddy fields from 150 farms in 16 major villages within the study area. The mean Cu and Zn concentrations in pig manures consistently exceeded the related standard. About 44 and 60% of soil samples exceed the Chinese Soil Cu and Cd Environmental Quality Standards, respectively. The concentration of Cu, Zn, and Cd in brown rice did not exceed the Chinese Food Hygiene Standard. There was a significant positive correlation between total Cu and Zn contents in soil and application rate of pig manures. Strong correlation was observed between the extractable Cu, Zn, and Cd in soil and the Cu, Zn, and Cd contents in the brown rice. The spatial distribution maps of Cu and Zn concentrations in brown rice, straw, and extractable soil Cu and Zn concentration also showed similar geographical trends. Further analyses on heavy metals loading flux and accumulation rates from pig manure applied suggested that Cu and Cd contents in soil currently have already exceeded the maximum permissible limit, and Zn, if still at current manure application rates, will reach the ceiling concentration limits in 9 yr. This study assists in understanding the risk of heavy metals accumulating from pig manure applications to agricultural soils.

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