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Journal of Hazardous Materials
Vol. 304, 2016, Pages: 166–172

Bioremediation of industrially contaminated soil using compost and plant technology

A.M. Taiwo, A.M. Gbadebo, J.A. Oyedepo, Z.O. Ojekunle, O.M. Alo, A.A. Oyeniran, O.J. Onalaja, D. Ogunjimi, O.T. Taiwo

Department of Environment Management and Toxicology, Federal University of Agriculture, PMB 2240 Abeokuta, Nigeria.


Compost technology can be utilized for bioremediation of contaminated soil using the active microorganisms present in the matrix of contaminants. This study examined bioremediation of industrially polluted soil using the compost and plant technology. Soil samples were collected at the vicinity of three industrial locations in Ogun State and a goldmine site in Iperindo, Osun State in March, 2014. The compost used was made from cow dung, water hyacinth and sawdust for a period of twelve weeks. The matured compost was mixed with contaminated soil samples in a five-ratio pot experimental design. The compost and contaminated soil samples were analyzed using the standard procedures for pH, electrical conductivity (EC), organic carbon (OC), total nitrogen (TN), phosphorus, exchangeable cations (Na, K, Ca and Mg) and heavy metals (Fe, Mn, Cu, Zn and Cr). Kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus) seeds were also planted for co-remediation of metals. The growth parameters of Kenaf plants were observed weekly for a period of one month. Results showed that during the one-month remediation experiment, treatments with ‘compost-only’ removed 49 ± 8% Mn, 32 ± 7% Fe, 29 ± 11% Zn, 27 ± 6% Cu and 11 ± 5% Cr from the contaminated soil. On the other hand, treatments with ‘compost + plant’ remediated 71 ± 8% Mn, 63 ± 3% Fe, 59 ± 11% Zn, 40 ± 6% Cu and 5 ± 4% Cr. Enrichment factor (EF) of metals in the compost was low while that of Cu (EF = 7.3) and Zn (EF = 8.6) were high in the contaminated soils. Bioaccumulation factor (BF) revealed low metal uptake by Kenaf plant. The growth parameters of Kenaf plant showed steady increments from week 1 to week 4 of planting.

Graphical abstract

Keywords: Bioremediation; Metals; Compost technology; Kenaf; Enrichment factor; Bioaccumulation factor.
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