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Field validation of chlordecone soil sequestration by organic matter addition

Clostre F., Woignier T., Rangon L., Fernandes P., Soler A., Lesueur Jannoyer M.. 2014. Journal of Soils and Sediments, 14 (1) : p. 23-33.

DOI: 10.1007/s11368-013-0790-3

The use of chlordecone (CLD) has caused pollution of soils, which are now a source of contamination for crops and ecosystems. Because of its long-term impacts on human health, exposure to CLD is a public health concern and contamination of crops by CLD must be limited. To this end, we conducted field trials on chlordecone sequestration in soil with added compost. Materials and methods The impact of added compost on chlordecone sequestration was measured in nitisols. After characterization of the soil, the transfer of chlordecone from soil to water was assessed in a leaching experiment and from soil to two crop plants in a nitisol plot. Finally, to understand the underlying processes, changes in CLD content were measured in soil fractions and soil porous properties were assessed after the addition of compost. Results and discussion A rapid seven-fold decrease in water extractable CLD was observed in amended soils. Five percent amendment led to a significant reduction in the contamination of crops by CLD; edible radish tubers were 50% more contaminated without added compost and cucumber fruits were 60% more contaminated. After the addition of compost, CLD content increased in the fraction of pre-humified or partially mineralized organic debris. Finally, in contrast to andosols, adding compost to nitisols did not affect the soil microstructure. Conclusions Increasing chlordecone sequestration by adding compost could be an alternative solution until soil decontamination techniques become available. This could be a provisional way to control further release of CLD from contaminated soils towards other environmental compartments.

Mots-clés : martinique; france

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