The Impact of Diesel Oil Pollution on the Hydrophobicity and CO2 Efflux of Forest Soils
Springer Science and Business Media LLC -- Water, Air, & Soil Pollution
DOI 10.1007/s11270-018-3720-6
  1. Physical properties of soil
  2. Diesel contamination
  3. Soil water repellency
  4. Soil moisture content
  5. CO2 efflux

The contamination of soil with petroleum products is a major environmental problem. Petroleum products are common soil contaminants as a result of human activities, and they are causing substantial changes in the biological (particularly microbiological) processes, chemical composition, structure and physical properties of soil. The main objective of this study was to assess the impact of soil moisture on CO2 efflux from diesel-contaminated albic podzol soils. Two contamination treatments (3000 and 9000 mg of diesel oil per kg of soil) were prepared for four horizons from two forest study sites with different initial levels of soil water repellency. CO2 emissions were measured using a portable infrared gas analyser (LCpro+, ADC BioScientific, UK) while the soil samples were drying under laboratory conditions (from saturation to air-dry). The assessment of soil water repellency was performed using the water drop penetration time test. An analysis of variance (ANVOA) was conducted for the CO2 efflux data. The obtained results show that CO2 efflux from diesel-contaminated soils is higher than efflux from uncontaminated soils. The initially water-repellent soils were found to have a bigger CO2 efflux. The non-linear relationship between soil moisture content and CO2 efflux only existed for the upper soil horizons, while for deeper soil horizons, the efflux is practically independent of soil moisture content. The contamination of soil by diesel leads to increased soil water repellency.