Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Effect of humic and fulvic acid transformation on cadmium availability to wheat cultivars in sewage sludge amended soil

Abstract

The high nutrients and organic matter (OM) content of sewage sludge make it an excellent fertilizer to enhance soil fertility and crop production. However, the presence of adsorbed and precipitated forms of heavy metals, especially cadmium (Cd), can be a major problem for such a utilization of sludge. This pot study aims at producing safe food with minimal Cd concentrations from sewage sludge amended soils. Two wheat cultivars (NARC-11 and Shafaq-06) were sown in soil amended with sewage sludge with rates 0, 15 and 30 g kg−1 soil. Application of sewage sludge resulted in enhancement of wheat grain yield while Cd concentrations in wheat grains of both cultivars remained within permissible limits (24.1 to 58.6 μg kg−1 dry weight). Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopic analysis revealed more spectral changes in fulvic acids than in humic acids, which showed a higher humification degree, making them chemically and biologically more stable for Cd retention. Sequential extraction data of Cd after NARC-11 harvest exhibited a significant decrease in mobile fractions (exchangeable and reducible fractions were reduced by 3.6 and 5.2%, respectively) and increase in immobile fraction (the oxidizable and residual fractions increased by 7 and 1.8%, respectively). It is concluded that sewage sludge application could be useful for the improvement of wheat production due to formation of stable humate complexes and decrease in Cd availability.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

References

  1. Amir S, Hafidi M, Merlina G, Hamdi H, Revel JC (2004) Elemental analysis, FTIR, 13C-NMR of humic acids from sewage sludge composting. Agronomie 24:13–18

  2. Amir S, Jouraiphy A, Meddich A, Gharous ME, Winterton P, Hafidi M (2010) Structural study of humic acids during composting of activated sludge-green waste: elemental analysis, FTIR and 13C NMR. J Hazard Mater 177:524–529

  3. Ashraf I, Ahmad I, Nafees M, Yousaf MM, Ahmad B (2016) A review on organic farming for sustainable agricultural production. Pure Appl Biol 5:277–286

  4. BillinghamK (2015)Humic products: potential or presumption for agriculture. Technol Engr NSW Agriculture

  5. Blume HP, Brümmer GW, Fleige H, Horn R, Kandeler E, Kogel-Knabner I, Kretzschmar R, Stahr K, Wilke BM (2016) Soil organic matter. In: Scheffer/Schachtschabel soil science. Springer, Berlin Heidelberg, pp 55–86. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-30942-7-3.

  6. Bolan N, Kunhikrishnan A, Thangarajan R, Kumpiene J, Park J, Makino T, Kirkham K, Scheckel K (2014) Remediation of heavy metal (loid)s contaminated soils—to mobilize or to immobilize? J Hazard Mater 266:141–166

  7. Chen CH, Zhou QX, Cai Z, Wang YY (2010) Effects of soil polycyclic musk and cadmium on pollutant uptake and biochemical responses of wheat (Triticum aestivum). Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 59:564–573

  8. Chotzen RA, Polubesova T, Chefetz B, Mishael YG (2016) Adsorption of soil-derived humic acid by seven clay minerals: a systematic study. Clays Clay Min 64:628–638

  9. CoatesJ (2000) Interpretation of infrared spectra, a practical approach. Encyclopedia of analytical chemistry. Meyers RA (ed.) Copyright Ó John Wiley & Sons Ltd. doi: https://doi.org/10.1002/9780470027318.a5606

  10. Corguinha AP, de Souza GA, Gonçalves VC, de Andrade CC, de Lima WE, Martins FA, Yamanaka CH, Francisco EA, Guilherme LR (2015) Assessing arsenic, cadmium, and lead contents in major crops in Brazil for food safety purposes. J Food Compos Anal 37:143–150

  11. Degryse F, Smolders E, Parker DR (2009) Partitioning of metals (Cd, Co, Cu, Ni, Pb, Zn) in soils: concepts, methodologies, prediction and applications. A review. Eur J Soil Sci 60:590–612

  12. Demyan MS, Rasche F, Schulz E, Breulmann M, Müller T, Cadisch G (2012) Use of specific peaks obtained by diffuse reflectance Fourier transform mid-infrared spectroscopy to study the composition of organic matter in a Haplic Chernozem. Eur J Soil Sci 63:189–199

  13. El Fels L, Zamama M, Hafidi M (2015) Advantages and limitations of using FTIR spectroscopy for assessing the maturity of sewage sludge and olive oil waste co-composts. In: Chamy R, Rozenkranz F, Soler L (eds) Biodegradation and bioremediation of polluted systems—new advances and technologies. In Tech, pp 127–144

  14. FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations (2017) FAO cereal supply and demand brief. http:// wwwfaoorg / world food situation / csdb/en/ Release date: 04 May 2017

  15. Fernandez-Ondoño E, Bacchetta G, Lallena AM, Navarro FB, Ortiz I, Jiménez MN (2017) Use of BCR sequential extraction procedures for soils and plant metal transfer predictions in contaminated mine tailings in Sardinia. J Geochem Explor 172:133–141

  16. Gonçalves ICR, Araújo ASF, Nunes LAPL, Bezerra AAC, de Melo WJ (2014) Heavy metals and yield of cowpea cultivated under composted tannery sludge amendment. Acta Sci Agron 36:443–448

  17. Harter RD, Naidu R (2001) An assessment of environmental and solution parameter impact on trace-metal sorption by soils. Soil Sci Soc Am J 65:597–612

  18. HelmkePA, LoeppertRH, SoltanpourPN, TabatabaiMA, JohnsonCT, SummerME (1996) Methods of soil analysis, part 3: chemical methods. Soil Sci Soc Am Madison, pp1018–1020

  19. Idrees S, Shabir S, Ilyas N, Batool N, Kanwal S (2015) Assessment of cadmium on wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) in hydroponics medium. Agrociencia 49:917–929

  20. Jamali MK, Kazi TG, Arain MB, Afridi HI, Jalbani N, Kandhroa GA, Shaha AQ, Baiga JA (2009) Heavy metal accumulation in different varieties of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) grown in soil amended with domestic sewage sludge. J Hazard Mater 164:1386–1391

  21. JECFA - Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (2011) Safety evaluation of certain food additives and contaminants. WHO Food Additives Series 64. World Health Organization, Geneva

  22. Julin B, Wolk A, Bergkvist L, Bottai M, Akesson A (2012) Dietary cadmium exposure and risk of postmenopausal breast cancer: a population-based prospective cohort study. Cancer Res 72:1459–1466

  23. Keiluweit M, Bougoure JJ, Nico PS, Pett-Ridge J, Weber PK, Kleber M (2015) Mineral protection of soil carbon counteracted by root exudates. Nat Clim Chang 5:588–595

  24. Khan MA, Khan S, Khan A, Alam M (2017) Soil contamination with cadmium, consequences and remediation using organic amendments. Sci Total Environ 601:1591–1605

  25. Khan S, Cao Q, Chen BD, Zhu YG (2006) Humic acids increase the phytoavailability of Cd and Pb to wheat plants cultivated in freshly spiked, contaminated soil. J Soils Sediments 6:236–242

  26. Koo BJ, Chang AC, Crowley DE, Page AL, Taylor A (2013) Availability and plant uptake of biosolid-borne metals. Appl Environ Soil Sci 2013:1–10

  27. Krishnamurti GSR, Cieslinski G, Huang PM, Van RKCJ (1997) Kinetics of cadmium release from soils as influenced by organic acids: implication in cadmium availability. J Environ Qual 26:271–277

  28. KrishnamurtiGSR, NaiduR (2008) Chemical speciation and bioavailability of trace metals. In: Wiley Inter Sci New York. pp 419–466

  29. Lehmann J, Kleber M (2015) The contentious nature of soil organic matter. Nature 528:60–68

  30. Liu Z, Yang Y, Bai Y, Huang Y, Nan Z, Zhao C, Ma J, Wang H (2016) The effect of municipal sludge compost on the mobility and bioavailability of Cd in a sierozem-wheat system in an arid region northwest of China. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23:20232–20242

  31. Lowman A, McDonald M, Wing A, Muhammad SN (2013) Land application of treated sewage sludge: community health and environmental justice. Environ Health Perspect 121:537–542

  32. Masciandaro G, Macci C, Peruzzi E, Ceccanti B, Doni S (2013) Organic matter-microorganism-plant in soil bioremediation: a synergic approach. Rev Environ Sci Biotechnol 12:399–419

  33. McBride MB (1995) Toxic metal accumulation from agricultural use of sludge: are USEPA regulations protective? J Environ Qual 24:5–18

  34. Mimmo T, Del Buono D, Terzano R, Tomasi N, Vigani G, Crecchio C, Pinton R, Zocchi G, Cesco S (2014) Rhizospheric organic compounds in the soil–microorganism–plant system: their role in iron availability. Eur J Soil Sci 65:629–642

  35. Moynihan M, Peterson KE, Cantoral A, Song PX, Jones A, Solano-González M, Meeker JD, Basu N, Téllez-Rojo MM (2017) Dietary predictors of urinary cadmium among pregnant women and children. Sci Total Environ 575:1255–1262

  36. Murtaza G, Haynes RJ, Kim KR, Zia MH, Naidu R, Belyaeva O (2012) Effect of ageing biosolids with soils of contrasting pH on subsequent concentrations of Cu and Zn in pore water and on their plant uptake. Environ Sci Pollut Res 19:636–645

  37. Negrea M, Leone P, Trichet J, Defarge C, Boero V, Gennari M (2004) Characterization of model soil colloids by cryo-scanning electron microscopy. Geoderma 121:1–16

  38. Nigam R, Srivastava S, Prakash S, Srivastava MM (2001) Cadmium mobilisation and plant availability—the impact of organic acids commonly exuded from roots. Plant Soil 230:107–113

  39. Pawar RM (2015) The effect of soil pH on bioremediation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHS). J Bioremd Biodeg 6:291. https://doi.org/10.4172/2155-6199.1000291

  40. Poghosyan GH, Mukhaelyan ZH, Vardevanyan PH (2014) Influence of cadmium ions on growth and antioxidant system activity of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) seedlings. Int J Sci Res Environ Sci 2:371–378

  41. Popovic O, Almas AR, Manojlovic M, Muratovic S, Singh BR (2011) Chemical speciation and bioavailability of Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn in Western Balkan soils. Acta Agric Scand Sect B Soil Plant Sci 61:730–738

  42. Rehman MZ, Rizwan M, Ghafoor A, Naeem A, Ali S, Sabir M, Qayyum MF (2015) Effect of inorganic amendments for in situ stabilization of cadmium in contaminated soils and its phyto-availability to wheat and rice under rotation. Environ Sci Pollut Res 22:16897–16906

  43. Rizwan M, Ali S, Abbas T, Rehman MZ, Hannan F, Keller C, Al-Wabel MI, Ok YS (2016) Cadmium minimization in wheat: a critical review. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 130:43–53

  44. Ruyter-Hooley M, Johnson BB, Morton DW, Angove MJ (2017) The adsorption of myo-inositol hexaphosphate onto kaolinite and its effect on cadmium retention. App Clay Sci 135:405–413

  45. Stevenson FJ (1994) Humus chemistry: genesis, composition, reactions, 2nd edn. John Wiley & Sons, New Jersey

  46. Terzano R, Cesco S, Mimmo T (2015) Dynamics, thermodynamics and kinetics of exudates: crucial issues in understanding rhizosphere processes. Plant Soil 386:399–406

  47. Tessier A, Campbell PGC, Bission M (1979) Sequential extraction procedure for the speciation of particulate trace metals. Anal Chem 51:844–858

  48. TorriSI, CorreaRS (2012) A review article: downward movement of potentially toxic elements in biosolids amended soils. Appl Environ Soil Sci 1–7.

  49. Ure AM, Quevauviller PH, Griepink H (1993) Speciation of heavy metals in soils and sediments. An account of the improvement and harmonization of extraction techniques undertaken under the auspices of the BCR of the commission of European Communities. Int J Environ Anal Chem 51:135–151

  50. USEPA (2005) Test methods for evaluating solid waste, physical/chemical methods, SW-846. U S Government Printing Office, Washington, DC

  51. Waqas M, Khan S, Qing S, Brian RJ, Cai C (2014) The effects of sewage sludge and sewage sludge biochar on PAHs and potentially toxic element bioaccumulation in Cucumis sativa L. Chemosphere 105:53–61

  52. Wu M, Song M, Liu M, Jiang C, Li Z (2016) Fungicidal activities of soil humic/fulvic acids as related to their chemical structures in greenhouse vegetable fields with cultivation chronosequence. Sci Rep 6:32858. https://doi.org/10.1038/srep32858

  53. Zhang J, Baoyi L, Meiyan X, Jian Y (2015) Tracking the composition and transformation of humic and fulvic acids during vermicomposting of sewage sludge by elemental analysis and fluorescence excitation-emission matrix. Waste Manag 39:111–118

  54. Zuberi M, Jibran S, Ali SF (2015) Greenhouse effect reduction by recovering energy from waste landfills in Pakistan. Renew Sust Energ Rev 44:117–131

Download references

Acknowledgements

The principal author is thankful to Higher Education Commission (HEC), Pakistan, for granting PhD Indigenous scholarship to support financially this research work. Special thanks to Saffron Pharmaceutical Pvt. (Ltd.) Khurianwala, Faisalabad, for providing the facility of Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy.

Author information

Correspondence to Imran Rashid.

Additional information

Responsible editor: Roberto Terzano

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Rashid, I., Murtaza, G., Zahir, Z.A. et al. Effect of humic and fulvic acid transformation on cadmium availability to wheat cultivars in sewage sludge amended soil. Environ Sci Pollut Res 25, 16071–16079 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-018-1821-9

Download citation

Keywords

  • Cadmium
  • Fulvic acid
  • Humic acid
  • Metal fractionation
  • Organic matter transformation
  • Spectroscopy