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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2022

Copper (Cu) speciation in organic-waste (OW) amended soil: Instability of OW-borne Cu(I) sulfide and role of clay and iron oxide minerals

Formentini, Thiago A.; Basile-Doelsch, Isabelle; Legros, Samuel; Frierdich, Andrew J.; Pinheiro, Adilson; Fernandes, Cristovao V. S.; Mallmann, Fabio J. K.; Borschneck, Daniel; da Veiga, Milton; Doelsch, Emmanuel


The geochemistry of copper (Cu) is generally assumed to be controlled by organic matter in soils. However, the role of clay and iron oxide minerals may be understated. Soil density fractionation, X-ray diffraction (XRD), and X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) were combined to assess the long-term behavior of Cu in an agricultural soil subject to organic waste application. Two unprecedented molecular environments of natural Cu (i.e. Cu inherited from the parent rock) in soils are reported: Cu dimer in the interlayer of vermiculite and Cu structurally incorporated within hematite. Moreover, the soil naturally containing Cu-vermiculite, Cu-hematite, but also Cu-kaolinite (Cu-total = 122 was amended over 11 years with Cu-rich pig slurry in which Cu was 100 % Cu(I) sulfide. Natural Cu associated with clay and iron oxide minerals persisted in the amended soil, but the exogenous Cu(I) sulfide was unstable. The increase in Cu concentration in the amended soil to 174 was accounted for the increase of Cu sorbed to kaolinite and Cu bound to organic matter. These results are important for better understanding the natural occurrence of Cu in soils and for assessing the environmental impacts of organic waste recycling in agricultural fields.


XAS; Cu dimer; Cu-vermiculite; Cu-hematite; Cu-kaolinite; Pig slurry; Agricultural recycling

Published in

Science of the Total Environment
2022, volume: 848, article number: 157779
Publisher: ELSEVIER

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Soil and Environment
Federal University of Parana
Basile-Doelsch, Isabelle
PSL Research University Paris
Legros, Samuel
Legros, Samuel
Universite de Montpellier
Frierdich, Andrew J.
Monash University
Pinheiro, Adilson
Universidade Regional de Blumenau (FURB)
Fernandes, Cristovao V. S.
Universidade Federal do Parana
Mallmann, Fabio J. K.
Universidade Federal de Santa Maria (UFSM)
Borschneck, Daniel
PSL Research University Paris
da Veiga, Milton
Universidade do Oeste de Santa Catarina
Doelsch, Emmanuel
Doelsch, Emmanuel
Universite de Montpellier

UKÄ Subject classification

Soil Science
Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

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