Impact of vegetation on sedimentary organic matter composition and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon attenuation

TitleImpact of vegetation on sedimentary organic matter composition and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon attenuation
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsGregory, ST, Shea, D, Guthrie-Nichols, E
JournalEnviron Sci Technol
Volume39
Issue14
Pagination5285-92
Date PublishedJul 15
ISBN Number0013-936X (Print)0013-936X (Linking)
KeywordsBiodegradation, Environmental, Environmental Monitoring, Geologic Sediments/chemistry, Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy, Mass Spectrometry, Plants, Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons/*isolation & purification/*metabolism, Refuse Disposal, Soil Pollutants/*isolation & purification/*metabolism
Abstract

Results from natural and engineered phytoremediation systems provide strong evidencethatvegetated soils mitigate polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) contamination. However, the mechanisms by which PAH mitigation occurs and the impact of plant organic matter on PAH attenuation remain unclear. This study assessed the impact of plant organic matter on PAH attenuation in labile and refractory sediments fractions from a petroleum distillate waste pit that has naturally revegetated. Samples were collected in distinct zones of barren and vegetated areas to assess changes to organic matter composition and PAH content as vegetation colonized and became established in the waste pit. Sediments were fractionated into bulk sediment and humin fractions and analyzed for organic matter composition by isotope ratio mass spectrometry (delta (13)C), 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (13C NMR), delta 14C AMS (accelerator mass spectrometry), and percent organic carbon (%TOC). Gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC/ MS) of lipid extracts of SOM fractions provided data for PAH distribution histograms, compound weathering ratios, and alkylated and nonalkylated PAH concentrations. Inputs of biogenic plant carbon, PAH weathering, and declines in PAH concentrations are most evidentfor vegetated SOM fractions, particularly humin fractions. Sequestered PAH metabolites were also observed in vegetated humin. These results show that plant organic matter does impact PAH attenuation in both labile and refractory fractions of petroleum distillate waste.

URLhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16082958
DOI10.1021/es048028o