Application of Biochemical Tests to Evaluate the Pollution of the Unislaw Basin soils with Heavy Metals

Document Type: Original Research Paper

Authors

1 Department of Soil Science and Soil Protection, Faculty of Agriculture and Biotechnology, University of Technology and Life Sciences, Bernardyńska 6 St., 85-029 Bydgoszcz, Poland

2 Sub-Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Agriculture and Biotechnology, University of Technology and Life Sciences, Bernardyńska 6 St., 85-029 Bydgoszcz, Poland

Abstract

To determine the extent and the size of the environment pollution with heavy metals, biological
methods, investigating the enzymatic activity of soil can be applied. Most frequently, the enzymes investigated in the soils threatened with anthropogenic contamination are phosphatases, dehydrogenases as reacting fastest to the increase in the content of heavy metals in the environment. The aim of the paper was to apply the results of the research to the activity of selected oxydo-reducing and hydrolytic enzymes to define the pollution of soils with zinc, copper and nickel of the Unisław Basin, the Kujawy and Pomorze Province. The total contents of Cu, Zn and Ni in the soils of the region allow for classifying the soils as unpolluted with those metals, while the contents of the forms extracted with the DTPA solution point to a low mobility of the elements and to their availability to plants. In terms of the negative effect of those heavy metals on the activity of selected enzymes, they have been ordered as follows: dehydrogenases: Ni>Zn, alkaline phosphatase: Zn>Cu, acid phosphatase: Zn>Cu. The use of enzymatic tests to evaluate the ecochemical condition of soils even with a natural content of heavy metals facilitates the long-term monitoring and identifying the trends.

Keywords