Submitted to: Proceedings of the International Conference on Biogeochemistry
Publication Type: Abstract only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/15/1999
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Concerns about the influence of heavy metals on soil quality has prompted work assessing influence of metal contaminants on biological function in soil. Various bioassays have been used in assessing the impact of metals on soil biology with potential use as tools in screening this aspect of soil quality. An expected outcome would be development of general guidelines for assessing status of metal toxicity in soils and, thereby, permit assessment of the changes in soil quality over regions containing diverse soils. This work explores use of current applications in assessing metal toxicity in soil. This study shows a sharp contrast between the results obtained in a survey of the diverse soils found in real-world ecosystems. The consistent relationships which were observed in controlled experiments had little apparent reflection on results obtained with the varied soils of natural systems. This study indicates the difficulty in developing a generalized basis for assessing metal toxicity in soil.