3 years ago

The responses of two native plant species to soil petroleum contamination in the Yellow River Delta, China

Hongjun Yang, Wenjun Xie, Zhaohua Lu, Liping Zhao, Tao Wu, Yanpeng Zhang, Rui Li

Abstract

Petroleum contamination is a significant environmental problem in the Yellow River Delta. The responses of two native salt-tolerant plant species, alfalfa (Medicago sativa) and bristle grass (Setaria uiridis Beauv), to soil petroleum contamination were investigated at five levels between 0 and 2.0% (w/w). Results showed that the total, aboveground and underground plant biomasses of both species were significantly reduced by petroleum contamination (p < 0.05), with the inhibition enhanced with increased petroleum levels. However, the emergence rate of bristle grass was promoted by petroleum contamination. Following 100 days of exposure, the number of soil petroleum degraders increased greatly, with a trend of initial increase followed by a decrease at 1.5% contamination or higher. Compared to bulk soils, bacteria-degrading alkanes, total hydrocarbons and PAHs in alfalfa rhizosphere soils increased by 1.33–4.18-, 0.85–3.01- and 4.12–12.75-fold, respectively, with an increase of 2.80–10.00-, 4.42–14.44- and 7.30–26.00-fold in bristle grass rhizosphere soils, respectively. The greatest number of petroleum degraders in bristle grass rhizosphere soils resulted in the highest petroleum degradation rate. Bristle grass may be the optimal species for petroleum remediation in the studied area.

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11356-017-0085-0

DOI: 10.1007/s11356-017-0085-0

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