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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Nitrate Movement in a Chilean Agricultural Area Irrigated with Untreated Sewage Water1


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 8 No. 1, p. 27-30
    Received: Oct 25, 1977

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  1. E. B. Schalscha,
  2. I. Vergara,
  3. T. Schirado and
  4. M. Morales2



Nitrate concentrations in soils and drainage and well waters were determined in a 15-ha field representing about 4,000 ha of agricultural land irrigated exclusively with raw sewage water for > 25 years. Analyses of the percolating water below the root zone indicated that the leached NO3-N was about 350 kg/ha per year. The transit time for water to move through the unsaturated zone to the saturated zone at a depth of 2 to 2.2 m was < 1 year, and the leaching fraction was estimated as 0.63. Concentrations of NO3-N ranged from 20 to 35 mg/liter in the percolating water of the unsaturated zone, whereas two well waters contained 9 and 14 mg/liter.

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