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Environments, Volume 7, Issue 7 (July 2020) – 4 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Sorbent materials are considered a first line of defense method for decontaminating oil spills and preventing further contaminant spread through the environment. In this study, oil spills on different land surfaces were recreated using microcosm simulations. Sustainable-origin sorbents made from dog fur and human hair were equally effective as polypropylene in extracting crude oil from hard terrestrial surfaces. In sandy terrestrial environments, polypropylene sorbent was the best-performing sorbent for extracting spilled crude oil. View this paper
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15 pages, 3950 KiB  
Article
Short- and Long-Term Biochar Cadmium and Lead Immobilization Mechanisms
by Liqiang Cui, Lianqing Li, Rongjun Bian, Jinlong Yan, Guixiang Quan, Yuming Liu, James A. Ippolito and Hui Wang
Environments 2020, 7(7), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/environments7070053 - 16 Jul 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3792
Abstract
The mechanisms of soil Cd and Pb alterations and distribution following biochar (BC; 0 to 40 t ha−1) amendments applied (in either 2009 [long-term] or in 2016 [short-term]) to a contaminated rice paddy soil, and subsequent plant Cd and Pb tissue [...] Read more.
The mechanisms of soil Cd and Pb alterations and distribution following biochar (BC; 0 to 40 t ha−1) amendments applied (in either 2009 [long-term] or in 2016 [short-term]) to a contaminated rice paddy soil, and subsequent plant Cd and Pb tissue distribution over time was investigated. Water-soluble Cd and Pb concentrations decreased by 6.7–76.0% (short-term) and 10.3–88.1% (long-term) with biochar application compared to the control. The soil exchangeable metal fractions (i.e., considered more available) decreased, and the residual metal fractions (i.e., considered less available) increased with short- and long-term biochar amendments, the latter likely a function of biochar increasing pH and forcing Cd and Pb to form crystal mineral lattice associations. Biochar application reduced Cd (16.1–84.1%) and Pb (4.1–40.0%) transfer from root to rice grain, with rice Cd and Pb concentrations lowered to nearly Chinese national food safety standards. Concomitantly, soil organic matter (SOM), pH and soil water content increased by 3.9–49.3%, 0.05–0.35 pH units, and 3.8–77.4%, respectively, with increasing biochar application rate. Following biochar applications, soil microbial diversity (Shannon index) also increased (0.8–46.2%) and soil enzymatic activities were enhanced. Biochar appears to play a pivotal role in forcing Cd and Pb sequestration in contaminated paddy soils, reducing heavy metal transfer to rice grain, and potentially leading to reduced heavy metal consumption by humans. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soil Contamination by Heavy Metals and Metalloids)
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8 pages, 1881 KiB  
Article
Decontaminating Terrestrial Oil Spills: A Comparative Assessment of Dog Fur, Human Hair, Peat Moss and Polypropylene Sorbents
by Megan L. Murray, Soeren M. Poulsen and Brad R. Murray
Environments 2020, 7(7), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/environments7070052 - 8 Jul 2020
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 17546
Abstract
Terrestrial oil spills have severe and continuing consequences for human communities and the natural environment. Sorbent materials are considered to be a first line of defense method for directly extracting oil from spills and preventing further contaminant spread, but little is known on [...] Read more.
Terrestrial oil spills have severe and continuing consequences for human communities and the natural environment. Sorbent materials are considered to be a first line of defense method for directly extracting oil from spills and preventing further contaminant spread, but little is known on the performance of sorbent products in terrestrial environments. Dog fur and human hair sorbent products were compared to peat moss and polypropylene sorbent to examine their relative effectiveness in adsorbing crude oil from different terrestrial surfaces. Crude oil spills were simulated using standardized microcosm experiments, and contaminant adsorbency was measured as percentage of crude oil removed from the original spilled quantity. Sustainable-origin absorbents made from dog fur and human hair were equally effective to polypropylene in extracting crude oil from non- and semi-porous land surfaces, with recycled dog fur products and loose-form hair showing a slight advantage over other sorbent types. In a sandy terrestrial environment, polypropylene sorbent was significantly better at adsorbing spilled crude oil than all other tested products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pollution Prevention/Environmental Sustainability for Industry)
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11 pages, 1341 KiB  
Article
Comparative Analysis on Urban Flood Countermeasures Based on Life Cycle Thinking: A Comparison between Enhancing of Drainage Capacity Project and Sponge City
by Xuezhou Fan and Toru Matsumoto
Environments 2020, 7(7), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/environments7070051 - 7 Jul 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3675
Abstract
The recent increase in rainstorm waterlogging disasters has acutely threatened sustainable urban development in China. Traditional strategy to solve this problem is drainage capacity enhancing projects, which aims at enlarging the discharge of water. Recently, there is a new countermeasure emerged in Chinese [...] Read more.
The recent increase in rainstorm waterlogging disasters has acutely threatened sustainable urban development in China. Traditional strategy to solve this problem is drainage capacity enhancing projects, which aims at enlarging the discharge of water. Recently, there is a new countermeasure emerged in Chinese cities: ‘Sponge City’, which aims at enlarging the absorption of water by increasing the curves of urban land. This article endeavours to make a comparison between these two countermeasures by building a framework to design and analyze the private or social costs of two projects which have the same rainwater control capacity. Finally, we have come to the conclusion that only considering initial cost, Sponge City unit cost is much more than drainage capacity enhancing project unit cost; considering external cost, Sponge City is not only competitive from an economical perspective, from an environmental perspective Sponge City is also competitive. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water and Energy Consumption in Urban Water Cycles)
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1 pages, 181 KiB  
Erratum
Erratum: Vivien, R.; Casado-Martínez, C.; Lafont, M.; Ferrari, B.J. Effect Thresholds of Metals in Stream Sediments Based on In Situ Oligochaete Communities. Environments 2020, 7, 31
by Régis Vivien, Carmen Casado-Martínez, Michel Lafont and Benoit J.D. Ferrari
Environments 2020, 7(7), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/environments7070050 - 29 Jun 2020
Viewed by 2541
Abstract
The authors would like to correct the published article [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Insights into Impacts of Toxic Metals in Aquatic Environments)
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