Phosphate sorption characteristics of European alpine soils

Jun 14, 2011

Soil chemistry plays an important role in the composition of surface waters. In areas with limited human activities, properties of catchment soils directly relate to the exported nutrients to surface waters. Phosphate sorption research is common in agricultural and forest soils, but data from alpine areas are limited.

Scientists from the Biology Centre of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Repbublic, from the Centre for Advanced Studies of Blanes, and from the Forest Sciences Center of Catalonia, have conducted research of the impact European alpine soils have on numerous catchments of alpine lakes.

By comparing phosphate sorption characteristics of soils with different levels of acidification, the scientists determined which soil chemical properties affected phosphate sorption.

The study showed that the sorption of alpine soils from different localities were generally similar, ranging between 9 – 145 mmol kg-1. This data was positively correlated with the sum of concentrations of aluminum and iron oxides.

Aluminum oxide concentration was the most important factor tested, accounting for an average of 67% of the sorption variability from the test sites.

Results also showed that similar concentrations of aluminum and iron oxides are able to more effectively retain phosphate in more acidic areas than in areas with high soil pH. Therefore, different levels of acidification of soils may contribute to lower concentrations in lakes in more acidified areas, compared to lakes less affected by acidification.

The complete results from this study can be found in the May-June 2011 issue of the Soil Science Society of America Journal.

Explore further: Pilot plant for the removal of extreme gas charges from deep waters installed

More information: The full article is available for no charge for 30 days following the date of this summary. View the abstract at www.soils.org/publications/sssaj/articles/75/3/862

Provided by American Society of Agronomy

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Acid soils in Slovakia tell somber tale

Nov 17, 2008

Increasing levels of nitrogen deposition associated with industry and agriculture can drive soils toward a toxic level of acidification, reducing plant growth and polluting surface waters, according to a new study published ...

Don't overlook urban soil

Jun 20, 2007

If you were looking for fertile soil, it’s doubtful you’d begin your search in most U.S. cities. After all, urban soils are often viewed as drastically disturbed soils with low fertility. However, new research by a team ...

Hairy secret of foraging plants discovered

Feb 18, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- The genes that control the hairy 'mining machine' that makes some plants better at finding nutrients in poor soils than others have been discovered by scientists from Oxford University and ...

Some trees 'farm' bacteria to help supply nutrients

Jul 29, 2010

Some trees growing in nutrient-poor forest soil may get what they need by cultivating specific root microbes to create compounds they require. These microbes are exceptionally efficient at turning inorganic minerals into ...

Recommended for you

Confucian thought and China's environmental dilemmas

4 hours ago

Conventional wisdom holds that China - the world's most populous country - is an inveterate polluter, that it puts economic goals above conservation in every instance. So China's recent moves toward an apparent ...

Deforestation threatens species richness in streams

4 hours ago

With a population of 1.3 billion, China is under immense pressure to convert suitable areas into arable land in order to ensure a continued food supply for its people. Accordingly, China is among the top ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.