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Nutrient and heavy metal concentrations in sunflower seedlings and sorghum regrowths from soils affected by the Aznalcollar loxic spill (Sevilla)

AuthorsMurillo Carpio, José Manuel ; Marañón, Teodoro ; Cabrera, Francisco ; López Núñez, Rafael ; Madejón, Engracia
Issue Date2000
PublisherEuropean Society for Soil Conservation
CitationMan and soil at the thrird millennium : Book of abstracts (2000)
AbstractThe breaching of the pyrite-mining, tailing dam of Aznalcollar mine (25 April 1998) caused a spill of water and sludge (ca. 5 million m3)¡ which affected a total of 4286 ha (2557 ha. of Croplands). A remediation procedure of the affected soils, consisting in the removal of the superficial ltop layer of deposited sludge, started immediately. Despite these cleaning works, soil (plough layer) in many points remained contaminated, with a heavy metal concentration even greater than that before the cleaning works. We have analyzed the nutritional status and heavy metal concentrations of sunflower seedlings ('Mastin, HS') and sorghum (bicolor, 'Grazer' X sudanese) regrowths collected after the cleaning works al the 'Soberbina' farm (37º 27' N, 6º 12' O, left bank of the Guadiamar river, ca. 4,5 km from the mine). Although both crops fields (as all crops other affected area) were abandoned, sunflower seeds attained to germinate, and sorghum resprouted, after the cleaning works. Concentration of heavy metals were greater in sunflower seedlings (3/4 pairs of leaves) collected in the affected, 'cleaned' soil than those collected in an adjacent, non-affected soil. However, plant growth (9/10 pairs of leaves) can seed a 'dilution' of the heavy metal concentrations, especially noticeable for Cd. For the 2-months old sorghum regrowths a significant increase was detected only in Pb concentration. None of the heavy metals studied in both crops reached either phytoloxic or toxic levels for human and livestock (eg. A maximum of 10 mg Pb kg" in sunflower seedlings, below the toxic level of 30 mg kg"). This circumstance contrasts with the levels reached by some wild plant species in the affected zone (eg., 46 and 74 mg Pb kg" in mandrake leaves and bermuda grass shools, respectively).
DescriptionPonencia presentada en e European Society for Soil Conservation International Congress 2000 Valencia).-- Man and soil at the thrird millennium : Proceedings of the International Congress, Valencia (España),28 March-1 April, (2000)
Appears in Collections:(IRNAS) Comunicaciones congresos
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