Application of biological indicators to assess recovery of hydrocarbon impacted soils

Dawson, J. J. C.; Godsiffe, E. J.; Thompson, I. P.; Ralebitso-Senior, T. K.; Killham, K. S.; Paton, G. I.. 2007 Application of biological indicators to assess recovery of hydrocarbon impacted soils. Soil Biology & Biochemistry, 39 (1). 164-177.

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Remediation programmes are considered complete when human risk-based criteria are met. These targets are unrelated to the ecological parameters that may be important with regard to future soil uses. As a consequence, there has been a move towards the consideration of biological indicators for hazard assessment in conjunction with the remediation of contaminated soils. This study uses a range of biological assays to assess the ecological health of soils from a former gas works site undergoing various remediation treatments. The indicators that optimally differentiated the extent of soil remediation were biomass-C, respiration, dehydrogenase activity, earthworm toxicity and mustard seed germination. Although they had different end-points, once robust and sensitive biological indicators were incorporated into a quantitative soil quality index, they gave a clearer representation of ecological health than chemical data alone by their integration of contamination effects at a number of trophic levels. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biogeochemistry > SE01B Sustainable Monitoring, Risk Assessment and Management of Chemicals
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Hails
ISSN: 0038-0717
Additional Keywords: hydrocarbons, biological indicators, remediation, soil quality index
NORA Subject Terms: Agriculture and Soil Science
Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 24 Jan 2008 13:10 +0 (UTC)

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