The objective of the experiment was to evaluate the energy efficiency of the phytoremediation process, supported using energy crops. The scope of conducted work includes the preparation of a field experiment. During the evaluation, 2 factors were into consideration – total energy demand and total energy benefit. The case study, used as an origin of data, consists a 3-years field study, conducted with the use of 2 energy crops – Phalaris arundinacea L. and Brassica napus L. The area subjected to the experiment was polluted with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and herbicides, classified as phenoxy acids (2, 4 D). The experimental design consisted of 4 groups of fields, divided according to the used plant species and type of treatment. For each energy crop, 2 types of fertilization strategies were used. Therefore the 1st and 3rd sets of fields were not treated with any soil amendment while the 2nd and 4th sets were fertilized with compost. The obtained data allowed to observe that the cultivation of P. arundinacea L. and B. napus L. allowed a positive energy balance of the process to be achieved. However, it should be noted, that the B. napus L. growth in the first vegetation season was not sufficient to fully compensate a total energy demand. Such a goal, in the mentioned case, was possible after the 2nd vegetation season. The collected results show also that the best energetic potential combined with the most effective soil remediation were obtained on the fields with the cultivation of P. arundinacea L. fertilized with compost. The number of biofuels, collected from the 1 ha of such fields, can reach a value equal even to12.76 Mg of coal equivalent.
The induction of phytoremediation by addition of complex substrates, such as sewage sludge (e.g. from the food industry), allows for better conditions of plant growth, however, it also increases the risk of chemical compounds leaching to the soil solution. Biogenic compounds occurring in sludge such as nitrogen, organic carbon and phosphorus when migrating with soil solution down the soil profile can lead to underground water contamination. The paper assesses the effect of sewage sludge inducted phytoextraction of Zn, Cd and Pb with the use of Sinapis alba L. (White mustard), Medicago sativa L. (Alfalfa) and Trifolium resupinatum L. (Persian clover) as well as the migration of biogenic compounds (nitrogen, organic carbon and phosporus) in soil solution. Research was conducted in controlled conditions of a phytotronic chamber in which the lysimetric experiment was carried out in order to monitor the changes of total nitrogen, ammonia, phosphates, organic carbon and pH every 3 weeks during the 112 days of the entire experiment. Based on the obtained results it was found that there is no risk of underground water contamination by investigated substances present in sewage sludge, because there was no indication of increased ammonia and carbon migration to the deeper parts of the soil profile.The only exception was the migration of nitrogen compounds other than ammonia (possibly nitrates and nitrites). Due to sewage sludge application the highest concentrations of ammonium nitrogen (211 mgN-NH4 l -1), total nitrogen (299 mg N l-1) and organic carbon (200 mg TOC l-1) were noted at a layer of 30 cm (from top of the column/lysimeter) after 3 weeks of the conducted process. With time a decrease of ammonium nitrogen as well as organic carbon concentration in all columns was noted. There was no indication of phosphates in the soil solution during the entire experiment, which was due to the high cation exchange capacity of the soil matrix.
The phytoextraction is a process that uses living plants for cleaning up the heavy metals from contaminated soil. The cadmium and lead contamination of soils results from the application of sludge or urban composts, fertilizers, pesticides, motorization, metallurgy, and different technological processes. In industrial terrain the content of cadmium and lead in soils has increased in the recent years. This study was undertaken to evaluate the potential of Amaranthus caudatus L. ‘Atropurpureus’ and Ricinus communis L. ‘Sanguineus Apache’ for phytoextraction of cadmium and lead. Two species of ornament plants, i.e. Amaranthus caudatus L. ‘Atropurpureus’ and Ricinus communis L. ‘Sanguineus Apache’, were planted in drainless containers in a substrate artificially polluted with cadmium and lead in order to evaluate their suitability for phytoremediation of soils or substrates contaminated with these metals. Cadmium was applied at increasing rates of 0, 1, 5 and 10 mg Cd∙dm-3 in the form of cadmium sulfate 3CdSO4∙8H2O, while lead was used at 0, 100, 500 and 1000 mg Pb∙dm-3 in the form of lead acetate (CH3COO)2Pb∙3H2O. The applied doses of cadmium and lead in the experiment reflected different degrees of soil pollution. After five months of growth it was found that Amaranthus caudatus L. accumulated the biggest concentrations of cadmium and lead in leaves and the lowest concentrations in inflorescences. Ricinus communis L. accumulated the highest concentrations of cadmium in stems, while the lowest concentrations in inflorescences, whereas the biggest concentration of lead was accumulated in inflorescences and the least lead was accumulated in leaves. The biggest reduction of cadmium and lead concentrations after the completion of the experiment was found in substrates, in which Amaranthus caudatus L. was grown. The tested species of ornamental plants may be used in the phytoextraction of cadmium and lead from soils contaminated.
Heavy metal pollution of soil is a significant environmental problem and has a negative impact on human health and agriculture. Phytoremediation can be an alternative environmental treatment technology, using the natural ability of plants to take up and accumulate pollutants or transform them. Proper development of plants in contaminated areas (e.g. heavy metals) requires them to generate the appropriate protective mechanisms against the toxic effects of these pollutants. This paper presents an overview of the physiological mechanisms of stress avoidance and tolerance by plants used in phytoremediation of heavy metals.
The aim of the paper is to improve the phytoremediation features of the metallophyte Silene vulgaris through photo-stimulation of seeds using a semi-conductive laser. Seeds of two Silene vulgaris ecotypes were used in the experiment. One type of seeds – “Wiry” ecotype – originated from a site contaminated with heavy metals (a serpentinite waste heap), and the other ecotype – “Gajków” – was collected on a site with naturally low heavy metal content. The seeds of both types were preconditioned with laser light with previously ﬁxed doses: C(D0), D1, D3, D5, D7, D9. The basic radiation dose was 2.5·10-1 J·cm-2. The soil for the experiment was serpentinite weathering waste. The seeds and plants were cultivated in the controlled conditions of a climatic chamber. Laser light indeed stimulated seed germinative capacity but better effects were obtained in “Wiry” ecotype, originating from a location contaminated with heavy metals. In the case of morphological features, a signiﬁcant differentiation of stem length was found for different ecotypes, dosages and the interactions of these factors. The study showed a strong inﬂuence of laser radiation on selected element concentrations in above-ground parts of Silene vulgaris, though “Wiry” ecotype clearly accumulated more heavy metals and magnesium than the “Gajków” ecotype.
Polygonum orientale with beautiful red flowers can be found as one dominant species in the vicinity of most water bodies and wetlands in China. However, its phytoremediation potential has not been sufficiently explored because little is known about its resistance to inorganic or organic pollutants. We investigated P. orientale response to low and moderate levels of phenol stress (≤ 80 mg L-1). Endpoints included phenol tolerance of P. orientale and the removal of the pollutant, antioxidant enzyme activities, damage to the cell membrane, osmotic regulators and photosynthetic pigments. In plant leaves, phenol stress significantly increased the activities of peroxidase (POD) and catalase (CAT), as well as the contents of proline, soluble sugars and carotenoids, whereas superoxide dismutase (SOD), H2O2 and electrolyte leakage (EL) levels remained unaltered. On the other hand, there were significant decreases of soluble protein and chlorophyll contents. We demonstrated that, in combination with phenol tolerance and its removal, P. orientale has efficient protection mechanisms against phenol-induced oxidative damage (≤ 80 mg L-1). We propose that P. orientale could be used as an alternative and interesting material in the phytoremediation of phenol.
The aim of the research conducted in a 2-year pot experiment in an unheated plastic tunnel was to determine suitability of Miscanthus × giganteus for phytoextraction of nickel from soil as well as to assess tolerance of this species on increasing concentrations of this metal in soil. Pots were filled with mineral soil (sand) and a mixture of soil with high-moor peat and three levels of nickel were introduced, i.e. 75 mg dm-3, 150 mg dm-3 and 600 mg dm-3 and the control combinations used substrates without the addition of nickel. Nickel was introduced only in the first year of the experiment in the form of nickel sulfate (NiSO4 · 6H2O). Miscanthus × giganteus accumulated a considerable amount of nickel in biomass. Miscanthus × giganteus growing in contaminated mineral soil turned out to be a species tolerant to high nickel concentrations
The potential of ﬁve plants namely Atriplex halimus L., A. canescens (Pursh) Nutt., Suaeda fruticosa (Forssk. ex J.F. Gmel.), Marrubium vulgare L. and Dittrichia viscosa (L.) Greuter from two selected wetlands in northwest Algeria subjected to house and industrial efﬂuents were examined to assess their arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) diversity and colonization, as well as to determine their tolerance and ability in accumulating metallic trace elements (MTEs). The purpose was to investigate whether, or not, these fungi are related to metallic uptake. Arbuscular mycorrhizal association was observed in all plant species, since the dual association between AMF and dark septate endophytes (DSE) was found in roots of 80% plants species. Hence, the decreasing trend of metal accumulation in most plant organs was Zn>Cu>Pb, and the most efﬁ cient species were M. vulgare> S. fruticosa> A. canescens> D. viscosa> A. halimus. The bioaccumulator factors exceeded the critical value (1.0) and the transport factors indicated that all these species were phytoremediators. Pearson correlation showed that Cd bioaccumulation and translocation were inhibited by AMF infection; meanwhile Zn, Pb and Cd accumulation were affected by AMF spore density and species richness, DSE frequency, pH, AMF and plant host. Native halophytes showed a multi-metallic resistance capacity in polluted wetlands. M. vulgare was the most efﬁcient in metal accumulation and the best host for mycorrhizal fungi. AMF played a major role in metal accumulation and translocation.