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Effect of biochars on bioaccumulation and human health risks of potentially toxic elements in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivated on industrially contaminated soil

Muhammad, Nisar, Nafees, Mohammad, Khan, Muhammad Haya, Ge, Liya, Lisak, Grzegorz
Environmental pollution 2020 v.260 pp. 113887
Cynodon dactylon, Triticum aestivum, bioaccumulation, biochar, biomass, cation exchange capacity, copper, crop yield, dissolved organic carbon, germination, green waste, human health, manganese, phosphorus, polluted soils, porosity, potassium, risk, roots, shoots, surface area, temperature, toxic substances, toxicity, wheat
In the present study, biochars (BCs) derived from naturally grown green waste (Cynodon dactylon L.) were investigated regarding their impacts on bioaccumulation of potentially toxic elements (PTEs), agronomic properties and human health risks of wheat crop cultivated on long-term industrially contaminated soil. Typically, three types of BCs were pyrolyzed at different highest temperature of treatment (HTT), i.e. 400 °C, 600 °C and 800 °C, in a horizontal reactor and applied to the contaminated soil with 2% and 5% (w/w) ratio. The characterization results of the BCs showed that significant positive changes in fundamental characteristics such as porosity, surface area, cation exchange capacity, dissolved organic carbon, phosphorus and potassium have occurred with increased HTT. The analytical results of wheat crop indicated that the BCs applications significantly (p ≤ 0.05) reduced concentration of PTEs in roots (48–95%), shoots (38–91%), leaves (30–91%) and grains (38–93%) of wheat plants. After the BCs application, the agronomic properties were enhanced up to 6–18%, 18–38%, 17–46%, 13–45%, 15–42%, 22–55% and 34–57% for germination rate, shoot length, shoot biomass, spike length, spike biomass, grain biomass and root biomass respectively. The human health risks of PTEs were significantly (p ≤ 0.05) decreased (31–93%) from toxicity level to safe level (except for Mn and Cu), after the BCs application. Based on the current study, the BCs (especially 800BC5) were recommended for reducing bioaccumulation of PTEs in different parts of the wheat plant, increasing growth and yield of wheat crop and decreasing human health risks via consumption of wheat grains.