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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Some Physical and Chemical Changes in the Soil Brought about by Saturation With Natural Gas1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 24 No. 1, p. 41-44
    Received: Aug 6, 1959
    Accepted: Sept 23, 1959

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  1. Russell S. Adams Jr. and
  2. Roscoe Ellis Jr.2



Severe chemical and physical changes may occur in soils saturated with natural gas. Plant growth may be retarded or completely eliminated.

A study was made of the profile of four gas-saturated field sites and the adjacent normal soils. Determinations were made for total carbon, available P, pH, exchange-able Mn, exchangeable ferric iron, and exchangeable ferrous iron. At two sites pH titration curves were determined. A sharp inflection in the curve at pH 2 was observed with gas-saturated soils. Substantial increases of total carbon, exchangeable Mn, and exchangeable ferric iron occurred in the gas-saturated soil. Exchangeable ferrous iron increased moderately. Determinations of soil pH and available P gave varied results, but in general showed increases in the gas-impregnated soils. Physical determinations at the two most severely affected sites revealed some increase in water retention and total porosity with a corresponding decrease in bulk density in the gassaturated soils. The disturbed Fe-Mn relationships may be one of the major factors accounting for the frequently observed detrimental influence of gas-saturated soils on vegetative growth. The change in water retention was not considered injurious to the plants.

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