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Effect of pH and soil environment

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The pH dependence of adsorption reactions of cationic metals is due, in part, to the preferential adsorption of the hydrolyzed metal species, in comparison to the free metal ion (McBride, 1977; McLauren and Crawford, 1973; Davis and Leckie, 1978; Farrah and Pickering, 1976a,b; James and Healy, 1972; McBride, 1982; Cavallaro and McBride, 1980; Harter, 1983). The pH of the soil system is a very important parameter that directly influences sorption/desorption, precipitation/ dissolution, complex formation, and oxidation-reduction reactions. In general, maximum retention of cationic metals occurs at pH>7 and maximum retention of anionic metals occurs at pH<7. However, because of the complexity of the soil-waste system, with its myriad of surface types and solution composition, such a generalization may not hold true. For example, cationic metal mobility has been observed to increase with increasing pH due to the formation of metal complexes with dissolved organic matter.
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  • Faculty of Biology, University of Szczecin, 3C Felczaka Street, 71-412 Szczecin, Poland
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