Skip to main content

Arsenic mobility in the amended mine tailings and its impact on soil enzyme activity

Abstract

The objectives of this study were to elucidate the effects of soil amendments [Ferrous sulfate (FeII), red mud, FeII with calcium carbonate (FeII/L) or red mud (RM/F), zero-valent iron (ZVI), furnace slag, spent mushroom waste and by-product fertilizer] on arsenic (As) stabilization and to establish relationships between soil properties, As fractions and soil enzyme activities in amended As-rich gold mine tailings (Kangwon and Keumkey). Following the application of amendments, a sequential extraction test and evaluation of the soil enzyme activities (dehydrogenase and β-glucosidase) were conducted. Weak and negative relationships were observed between water-soluble As fractions (AsWS) and oxalate extractable iron, while AsWS was mainly affected by dissolved organic carbon in alkaline tailings sample (Kangwon) and by soil pH in acidic tailings sample (Keumkey). The soil enzyme activities in both tailings were mainly associated with AsWS. Principal component and multiple regression analyses confirmed that AsWS was the most important factor to soil enzyme activities. However, with some of the treatments in Keumkey, contrary results were observed due to increased water-soluble heavy metals and carbon sources. In conclusion, our results suggest that to simultaneously achieve decreased AsWS and increased soil enzyme activities, Kangwon tailings should be amended with FeII, FeII/L or ZVI, while only ZVI or RM/F would be suitable for Keumkey tailings. Despite the limitations of specific soil samples, this result can be expected to provide useful information on developing a successful remediation strategy of As-contaminated soils.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3

References

  1. Akhter, H., Butler, L. G., Branz, S., Cartledge, F. K., & Tittlebaum, M. E. (1990). Immobilization of As, Cd, Cr, and Pb-containing soils by using cement or pozzolanic fixing agents. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 24(2–3), 145–155.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Andra, S. S., Sarkar, D., Saminathan, S. K. M., & Datta, R. (2011). Predicting potentially plant-available lead in contaminated residential sites. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 175(1–4), 661–676.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Bertocchi, A. F., Ghiani, M., Peretti, R., & Zucca, A. (2006). Red mud and fly ash for remediation of mine sites contaminated with As, Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 134(1–3), 112–119.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Bhattacharyya, P., Tripathy, S., Kim, K., & Kim, S. H. (2008). Arsenic fractions and enzyme activities in arsenic-contaminated soils by groundwater irrigation in West Bengal. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 71(1), 149–156.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Bothe, J. V., & Brown, P. W. (1999). Arsenic immobilization by calcium arsenate formation. Environmental Science and Technology, 33(21), 3806–3811.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Bowell, R. J. (1994). Sorption of arsenic by iron oxides and oxyhydroxides in soils. Applied Geochemistry, 9(3), 279–286.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Cao, X., Ma, L. Q., & Shiralipour, A. (2003). Effects of compost and phosphate amendments on arsenic mobility in soils and arsenic uptake by the hyperaccumulator, Pteris vittata L. Environmental Pollution, 126(2), 157–167.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Codling, E. E., & Dao, T. H. (2007). Short-term effect of lime, phosphorus, and iron amendments on water-extractable lead and arsenic in orchard soils. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis, 38(7), 903–919.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Dick, R. P. (1997). Soil enzyme activities as integrative indicators of soil health. In C. E. Pankhurst, B. M. Doube, & V. V. S. R. Gupta (Eds.), Biological Indicators of Soil Health (pp. 121–156). New York, USA: CAB International.

    Google Scholar 

  10. Eivazi, F., & Tabatabai, M. A. (1988). Glucosidases and galactosidases in soils. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 20(5), 601–606.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. Fedotov, P. S., Fitz, W. J., Wennrich, R., Morgenstern, P., & Wenzel, W. W. (2005). Fractionation of arsenic in soil and sludge samples: continuous-flow extraction using rotating coiled columns versus batch sequential extraction. Analytica Chimica Acta, 538(1–2), 93–98.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. Friedel, J. K., Molter, K., & Fischer, W. R. (1994). Comparison and improvement of methods for determining soil dehydrogenase activity by using triphenyltetrazolium chloride and iodonitrotetrazolium chloride. Biology and Fertility of Soils, 18(4), 291–296.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. Garau, G., Castaldi, P., Santona, L., Deiana, P., & Melis, P. (2007). Influence of red mud, zeolite and lime on heavy metal immobilization, culturable heterotrophic microbial populations and enzyme activities in a contaminated soil. Geoderma, 142(1–2), 47–57.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Geiger, G., Brandl, H., Furrer, G., & Schulin, R. (1998). The effect of copper on the activity of cellulase and β-glucosidase in the presence of montmorillonite or Al-montmorillonite. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 30(12), 1537–1544.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Gemeinhardt, C., Müller, S., Weigand, H., & Marb, C. (2006). Chemical immobilization of arsenic in contaminated soils using iron(II) sulphate—Advantages and pitfalls. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution: Focus, 6(3–4), 281–297.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  16. Gratão, P. L., Polle, A., Lea, P. J., & Azevedo, R. A. (2005). Making the life of heavy metal-stressed plants a little easier. Functional Plant Biology, 32, 481–494.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Hartley, W., Edwards, R., & Lepp, N. W. (2004). Arsenic and heavy metal mobility in iron oxide-amended contaminated soils as evaluated by short- and long-term leaching test. Environmental Pollution, 131(3), 495–504.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  18. Hartley, W., & Lepp, N. W. (2008). Effect of in situ soil amendments on arsenic uptake in successive harvests of ryegrass (Lolium perenne cv Elka) grown in amended As-polluted soils. Environmental Pollution, 156(3), 1030–1040.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  19. Jeon, C. S., Baek, K., Park, J. K., Oh, Y. K., & Lee, S. D. (2009). Adsorption characteristics of As(V) on iron-coated zeolite. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 163(2–3), 804–808.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  20. Karaca, A., Cetin, S. C., Turgay, O. C., & Kizilkaya, R. (2010). Effects of heavy metals on soil enzyme activities. In I. Sherameti & A. Varma (Eds.), Soil heavy metals (pp. 237–262). Berlin, Germany: Springer.

    Chapter  Google Scholar 

  21. Koo, N., Jo, H. J., Lee, S. H., & Kim, J. G. (2011b). Using response surface methodology to assess the effects of iron and spent mushroom substrate on arsenic phytotoxicity in lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.). Journal of Hazardous Materials. doi:10.1016/j.hazmat.2011.05.032.

  22. Koo, N., Kim, K. R., Choi, Y. J., Lee, S. H., Owens, G., & Kim, J. G. (2011a). Increased As load to the Ucheon stream due to mine drainage and soils in the abandoned Kangwon mining district of Korea. Environmental Earth Sciences. doi:10.1007/s12665-011-1116-7.

  23. Korea Ministry of Environment (KMoE). (1997). The soil environment conservation act. Seoul, Republic of Korea: Korea Legislation Research Institute.

    Google Scholar 

  24. Kumpiene, J., Lagerkvist, A., & Maurice, C. (2008). Stabilization of As, Cr, Cu, Pb and Zn in soil using amendments—A review. Waste Management, 28(1), 215–225.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  25. LeBrond, J. B., & Duffy, L. K. (2001). Toxicity assessment of total dissolved solids in effluent of Alskan mines using 22-h chronic Microtox® and Selenastrum capricornatum assays. The Science of the Total Environment, 271(1–3), 49–59.

    Google Scholar 

  26. Lee, S. H., Lee, J. S., Choi, Y. J., & Kim, J. G. (2009). In situ stabilization of cadmium-, lead-, and zinc-contaminated soil using various amendments. Chemosphere, 77(8), 1069–1075.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  27. Loeppert, R. H., & Inskeep, W. P. (1996). Iron. In D. L. Sparks (Ed.), Method of soil analysis: Part III-Chemical methods (pp. 639–664). Wisconsin, USA: Soil Science Society of America.

    Google Scholar 

  28. Masscheleyn, P. H., Delaune, R. D., & Patrick, W. H. (1991). Effect of redox potential and pH on arsenic speciation and solubility in a contaminated soil. Environmental Science and Technology, 25(8), 1414–1419.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  29. Nelson, D. W., & Sommers, L. E. (1996). Total carbon, organic carbon and organic matter. In D. L. Sparks (Ed.), Method of soil analysis: Part III-Chemical methods (pp. 961–1010). Wisconsin, USA: Soil Science Society of America.

    Google Scholar 

  30. Paradis, M., Duchesne, J., Lamontagne, A., & Isabel, D. (2006). Using red mud bauxite for the neutralization of acid mine tailings: A column leaching test. Canadian Geotechnical Journal, 43(11), 1167–1179.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  31. Roussel, C., Néel, C., & Bril, H. (2000). Minerals controlling arsenic and lead solubility in an abandoned gold mine tailings. The Science of the Total Environment, 263(1–3), 209–219.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  32. Sadiq, M. (1997). Arsenic chemistry in soils: an overview of thermodynamic predictions and field observations. Water, Air, and Soil pollution, 93(1–2), 117–136.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  33. Subacz, J. L., Barnett, M. O., Jardine, P. M., & Stewart, M. A. (2007). Decreasing arsenic bioaccessibility/bioavailability in soils with iron amendments. Journal of Environmental Science and Health, Part A, 42(9), 1317–1329.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  34. Tejada, M., Moreno, J. L., Hernandez, M. T., & Garcia, C. (2008). Soil amendments with organic wastes reduce the toxicity of nickel to soil enzyme activities. European Journal of Soil Biology, 44(1), 129–140.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  35. Thomas, G. W. (1996). Soil pH and soil acidity. In D. L. Sparks (Ed.), Method of soil analysis: Part III-Chemical methods (pp. 475–490). Wisconsin, USA: Soil Science Society of America.

    Google Scholar 

  36. Wang, S., & Mulligan, C. N. (2009). Enhanced mobilization of arsenic and heavy metals from mine tailings by humic acid. Chemosphere, 74(2), 274–279.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  37. Wang, Y., Shi, J., Lin, Q., Chen, X., & Chen, Y. (2007). Heavy metal availability and impact on activity of soil microorganisms along a Cu/Zn contamination gradient. Journal of Environmental Sciences, 19(7), 848–853.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  38. Wenzel, W. W., Kirchbaumer, N., Prohaska, T., Stingeder, G., Lombi, E., & Adriano, D. C. (2001). Arsenic fractionation in soils using an improved sequential extraction procedure. Analytica Chimica Acta, 436(2), 309–323.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

This research was financially supported by grant as “the Fundamental Investigation on Environment of the Han River” to J. G. Kim from the Korea Ministry of Environment and partly by a grant from Korea University.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Jeong-Gyu Kim.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Koo, N., Lee, SH. & Kim, JG. Arsenic mobility in the amended mine tailings and its impact on soil enzyme activity. Environ Geochem Health 34, 337–348 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10653-011-9419-x

Download citation

Keywords

  • Arsenic
  • Multiple regression analysis
  • Principal component analysis
  • Soil amendment
  • Soil enzyme activity