Phosphorus transformations from reclaimed wastewater to irrigated soil: A 31P NMR study.

Zohar, I., Cade-Menun, B.J., Paytan, A., and Shaviv, A. (2014). "Phosphorus transformations from reclaimed wastewater to irrigated soil: A 31P NMR study.", Soil Science Society of America Journal, 78(6), pp. 1884-1892. doi : 10.2136/sssaj2014.01.0037  Access to full text


Irrigation of soils with reclaimed wastewater (RW) is a common practice in arid regions, but may pose an environmental threat if labile phosphorus (P) forms accumulate at the soil surface. Soil P lability can be affected by P forms in the applied RW and by P composition and distribution in the soil. Solution 31P nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy was employed to identify P forms in RW solutions, in whole soil extracts and in fractionated soil P pools in agricultural soils (maize crop, Acre, Israel) irrigated with the examined RW or with freshwater (FW) and a chemical fertilizer. The RW was rich with total P (P{SUB}T{/SUB}) and molybdate-reactive P (MRP), consistent with high concentrations of MRP in the RW-irrigated soil. Identified compounds and compound classes in the RW and in the soils include orthophosphate, polyphosphate, orthophosphate monoesters, and orthophosphate diesters. However, there was a shift in P compound classes from the RW to the RW-irrigated soil; although the water sources were different, P forms in the soils of the different treatments were similar. The possible factors that might control this change are discussed, including biological and geochemical P recycling and crop inputs.

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