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Chemical immobilization of Pb, Cu, and Cd by phosphate materials and calcium carbonate in contaminated soils

Abstract

Soil contamination with toxic metals has increasingly become a global concern over the past few decades. Phosphate and carbonate compounds are good passivation materials for Pb immobilization, while the effect of phosphate and carbonate on the immobilization of multiple heavy metals (Pb, Cu, and Cd) in contaminated soils was seldom investigated. In this study, bone meal (BM), phosphate rock (PR), oxalic acid-activated phosphate rock (APR), super phosphate (SP), and calcium carbonate (CC) were added to the contaminated soils to evaluate the effect of phosphate materials and calcium carbonate on the immobilization of Pb, Cu, and Cd. The results showed that the pH of the treated soils increased 1.3–2.7, except SP which decreased 0.5 at most. Compared to the control treatment, all phosphates and calcium carbonate added to the polluted soils increased the fraction of residual metals, and the application of APR, PR, BM, and CC significantly reduced exchangeable and carbonate-bound fraction metals. PR and APR were the most effective for the immobilization of Pb, Cu, and Cd in the soils among these materials. Moreover, the concentrations of all metals in the toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) leachate decreased with increasing amounts of amendments, and the concentrations of Pb in the TCLP leachate for soils treated with PR and APR were below the nonhazardous regulatory limit of 5 mg L−1 (US Environmental Protection Agency). Based on our results, phosphate rock and oxalic acid-activated phosphate rock are effective in the immobilization of multiple metals by reducing their mobility in the co-contaminated soils.

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Acknowledgments

This project was financially supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China (41371470) and the National Key Technology Support Program (2015BAD05B00).

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Correspondence to Hongqing Hu.

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Responsible editor: Zhihong Xu

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Huang, G., Su, X., Rizwan, M.S. et al. Chemical immobilization of Pb, Cu, and Cd by phosphate materials and calcium carbonate in contaminated soils. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23, 16845–16856 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-016-6885-9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-016-6885-9

Keywords

  • Heavy metal
  • Immobilization
  • Phosphate
  • Tessier sequential extraction
  • TCLP