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Scientia Agricola

versão impressa ISSN 0103-9016versão On-line ISSN 1678-992X


OLIVEIRA-LONGATTI, Silvia Maria de et al. Agronomic and environmental implications of using a By-Product of the Intermediate Tanning Processes as Nitrogen Fertilizer. Sci. agric. (Piracicaba, Braz.) [online]. 2017, vol.74, n.3, pp.250-257. ISSN 0103-9016.

Nitrogen (N) is an important nutrient for agriculture, and Brazil is heavily dependent on N imports. A by-product of the intermediate processes of tanning (BPIPT) may be used as an N fertilizer which will reduce this dependency, but its chromium (Cr) content is a matter of concern. This work assessed Cr (III, VI) and N (total, inorganic) contents in four soil samples with contrasting characteristics (especially with respect to their content of manganese (Mn), a potential Cr(III) oxidant), following the addition of the BPIPT. Chemical and microbiological indicators of soil quality were measured to assess the agronomic and environmental implications of the BPIPT addition in Brazilian soils. Our results indicate that the BPIPT is a promising source of N. The originally available Mn content in the soil did not influence the effect of the BPIPT on soil Cr(VI) content. Finally, microbial activity was generally stimulated after BPIPT addition to the soil. This information is relevant because: 1) it shows that the beneficial use of the BPIPT as an N fertilizer is important for adding value to a by-product with agronomic potential; and 2) it indicates that, at the dosage of the BPIPT used in this study (2.5 g kgsoil−1), the typical increases in the soil concentration of labile Cr (0–25 mg kgsoil−1) and Cr(VI) (0–0.8 mg kgsoil−1) due to the application of the BPIPT are not detrimental to biological activity in the soil. However, further investigations are still necessary to evaluate the mobility of these Cr species in the soil and possible risks of groundwater contamination, which were not addressed in this study.

Palavras-chave : high-Mn soils; agronomic efficiency; trivalent chromium; hexavalent chromium; microbiological parameters.

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