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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R31834847

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The application of biochar as a soil amendment in land reclamation Open Access

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Other title
Subject/Keyword
coal mine
heavy metal adsorption
biochar
land reclamation
microorganisms
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Liu, Jinhu
Supervisor and department
Macdonald S. Ellen (Renewable Resources)
MacKenzie, M. Derek (Renewable Resources)
Examining committee member and department
Dyck, Miles (Renewable Resources)
Landhausser, Simon (Renewable Resources)
Department
Department of Renewable Resources
Specialization
Land Reclamation and Remediation
Date accepted
2015-01-30T08:39:09Z
Graduation date
2015-06
Degree
Master of Science
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
Surface mining activities cause severe adverse effects on soils. Scientists across the world have used different physical, chemical and biological reclamation techniques to recover mining disturbed areas. The effectiveness and efficiency of reclamation techniques is crucial to reclamation success. Biochars are biological residues combusted under low oxygen conditions, resulting in a porous, low density carbon rich material. Research has suggested that biochar can be used as an amendment to improve soil physical, chemical, and biological quality. The present study investigated the application of biochar as a soil amendment for land reclamation. Specifically, the impact of biochar application on aspen growth, microbial biomass, soil respiration, heavy metal adsorption, and metabolic quotient were measured in a greenhouse experiment using land reclamation soils and in a field experiment on a reclaimed coal mine west of Edmonton, AB, Canada. Results of the greenhouse experiment showed that the biochar had the ability to retain the soil nutrients, increase the soil microbial biomass and soil heterotrophic respiration; while the petroleum- coke had a negative impact on tree growth. In the field experiment, the results showed that biochar increased DOC, DON (dissolved organic carbon and nitrogen), MBC and MBN (microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen) and soil heterotrophic respiration. The results are consistent with previous findings which suggested that biochar can improve soil available nutrient and increase microbial activity.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R31834847
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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