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Journal of Hazardous Materials
Volume 415, 2021, 125727

Field-scale studies on the change of soil microbial community structure and functions after stabilization at a chromium-contaminated site

Danni Lia,b, Guanghe Lia,b, Dayi Zhanga,b

School of Environment, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China.


Various remediation strategies have been developed to eliminate soil chromium (Cr) contamination which challenges the ecosystem and human health, and chemical stabilization is the most popular one. Limited work focuses on the change of soil microbial community and functions after chemical stabilization. The present study examined the diversity and structure of bacterial, fungal and archaeal communities in 20 soils from a Cr-contaminated site in China after chemical stabilization and ageing. Cr contamination significantly reduced microbial diversity and shaped microbial community structure. After chemical stabilization, bacterial and fungal communities had higher richness and evenness, whereas archaea behaved oppositely. Microbial community structure after stabilization were more similar to uncontaminated soils. Among all environmental variables, pH and Al explained 25.2% and 9.4% of the total variance of bacterial diversity, whereas the major variable affecting fungal community was pH (29.3%). Cr, organic matters, extractable-Al and moisture explained 25.8%, 22.4%, 9.9% and 9.9% of the total variance in archaeal community, respectively. This work for the first time unraveled the change of the whole soil microbial community structures and functions at Cr-contaminated sites after chemical stabilization on field scale and proved chemical stabilization as an effective approach to detoxicate Cr(VI) and recover microbial communities in soils.

Key words: Chemical stabilization, Chromium-contaminated soils, Microbial community, Soil function.

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