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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Behavior of 2,4-D in Belgian Soils1


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 9 No. 4, p. 627-633
    Received: June 7, 1979

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  1. A. Moreale and
  2. R. Van Bladel2



This investigation was conducted to determine the physicochemical parameters of soils useful in predicting the adsorption and movement of 2,4-D ([2,4-dichlorophenoxy] acetic acid) in selected soils (surface and subhorizons) from the sandy and loam regions of Belgium. A statistical analysis showed that organic matter, soil pH (surface horizons), and exchangeable aluminum (subhorizons) could be used as key characteristics in the quantitative determination of the percentage of 2,4-D adsorbed. Adsorption isotherms demonstrated that changing the initial concentration of 2,4-D in solution (0.01–10 ppm) was of negligible importance in determining key soil properties related to the percentage of 2,4-D adsorbed. Desorption data were significantly correlated (r = −0.96) with the percentage of 2,4-D initially adsorbed. The overall effect of increasing the ionic strength of the calcium chloride (CaCl2) solution was to enhance 2,4-D adsorption. However, this effect was relatively small between 0.075 and 0.75 ionic strength. Degradation of 2,4-D added at a rate of 10 µg/g of soil (soil/solution ratio 1:1) was followed by CO2 evolution resulting from the oxidation of [Carboxyl-14C] 2,4-D. Within 1 month of incubation, extensive degradation occurred in neutral soils, but the degradation rate was considerably lower in acid soils. Leaching experiments indicated that 2,4-D mobility was inversely related to the amount of 2,4-D adsorbed. After 62-days of leaching in a Podzol soil column, 1 m long, the recovery of 2,4.D nondegraded in the profile was only 7% of the initial application rate. No trace of the herbicide was detected in the column effluent for this period.

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