Submitted to: Journal Of Water Air And Soil Pollution
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/27/2005
Publication Date: 4/27/2005
Citation: Konomi, K., Savabi, M.R., Shinde, D., Jayachandran, K., Nkedi-Kizza, P., Reed, S.T. 2005. Water and Atrazine Movement in a Calcareous Compost Applied Soil During Simulated Multiple Storm Events. Journal Of Water Air And Soil Pollution. 165:365-377. Interpretive Summary: Non-point source water pollution resulting from agricultural activity has been implicated as a source of water quality degradation in South Florida. Agricultural soils in the region are mainly composed of crushed limestone, which has a low water and chemical retention capacity. Therefore, sustaining a profitable agricultural system requires appropriate applications of fertilizer and irrigation. We studied the effect of compost to improve the quality of the soil by retaining more moisture and agr-chemicals. The results indicate that adding compost to soils in South Florida will increase soil water holding capacity and reduce the leaching of herbicides.
Technical Abstract: Agricultural soils in the region are mainly composed of crushed limestone, which has a low water and chemical retention capacity. Therefore, sustaining a profitable agricultural system requires appropriate applications of fertilizer, pesticides and irrigation. The retention and transport of atrazine (2-chloro-4-ethylamino-6-isopropylamino-s-triazine) in a carbonatic soil (Krome) amended with three types of compost, Bedminster (75% municipal solid wastes and 25% sludge), sludge (100% sewage sludge) and clean organic waste (municipal solid wastes) were studied. The research was conducted in two phases; a column-leaching study (dynamic) and a batch-equilibrium method (static). Concentrations of leached atrazine and that found in different layers of the soil packed in columns were measured. Data from our study shows that the retention and transport of atrazine was affected by the presence of compost layers. The column study demonstrated that while applying one pore volume of simulated rain, atrazine leached out at a slower rate from the soil with compost than from the soil without compost. Bedminster compost had the lowest atrazine leaching rate compared to the other types tested. Extractable chemical concentrations did not change with column depth, however there was a significant difference between the compost layers. This study suggests that adding 60 tons/acre composts to the calcareous soils increased soil water holding capacity, reduced leaching potential of atrazine and thereby reduce groundwater contamination.