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An assessment of the utilization of waste resources for the immobilization of Pb and Cu in the soil from a Korean military shooting range

Abstract

Military shooting range soils contaminated by heavy metals have been subjected to remediation efforts to alleviate the detrimental effects of exposure on humans and the surrounding environment. Waste materials can be used as cost-effective soil amendments to immobilize heavy metals in contaminated soils. In this study, naturally occurring lime-based waste materials including egg shells, oyster shells, and mussel shells were assessed for their effectiveness toward heavy metal immobilization in military shooting range soil in Korea. Soil was treated in batch leaching experiments with 0, 2.5, 5, 10, and 15% of each lime-based waste material. The results showed that the lime-based waste materials effectively reduced water-soluble Pb at an application rate of 2.5% by weight of the soil. Increase in soil pH from 6.6 to 8.0 was considered to be the main chemistry of Pb immobilization, which was supported by the formation of insoluble Pb species at high pH values as confirmed by the visual MINTEQ thermodynamic model. In contrary, water-soluble Cu was increased in the lime-based waste material-treated soils when compared to the untreated soil. This was likely attributed to the formation of soluble Cu–DOC (dissolved organic carbon) complexes as all lime-based waste materials applied increased DOC contents in the soil. Therefore, care must be taken in selecting the appropriate amendment for immobilizing metals in shooting range soils.

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Acknowledgments

This study was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea Grant funded by the Korean Government (Project number: 2009-0071439). Instrumental analysis was supported by a grant from the Institute of Environmental Research and the Central Laboratory of Kangwon National University in Korea.

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Correspondence to Deok Hyun Moon or Yong Sik Ok.

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Ahmad, M., Moon, D.H., Lim, K.J. et al. An assessment of the utilization of waste resources for the immobilization of Pb and Cu in the soil from a Korean military shooting range. Environ Earth Sci 67, 1023–1031 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12665-012-1550-1

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Keywords

  • Small arms firing ranges
  • Resource recycling
  • Remediation
  • Chemical stabilization
  • Dissolved organic matter
  • Chemical equilibrium model