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Assessment of physical and chemical properties of sub-tropical soil to predict long term effluent treatment potential

Dawes, Les A., Goonetilleke, Ashantha, & Cox, Malcolm E. (2005) Assessment of physical and chemical properties of sub-tropical soil to predict long term effluent treatment potential. Soil and Sediment Contamination, 14(3), pp. 211-230.

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Abstract

On-site wastewater treatment systems aim to assimilate domestic effluent into the environment. Unfortunately failure of such systems is common and inadequate effluent treatment can have serious environmental implications. A research project was undertaken to determine the role of physical and chemical soil properties in the treatment performance of subsurface effluent disposal areas. Monitoring changes in these properties permit improved prediction of the treatment potential of a soil. The changes within soil properties of the disposal area due to effluent application were found to be directly related to the subsurface drainage characteristics including permeability, clay content and clay type. The major controlling soil physical and chemical attributes were found to be moderate drainage, significant soil cation exchange capacity and dominance of exchangeable Ca or exchangeable Mg over exchangeable Na, low exchangeable Na, clay type and a minimum depth of 0.4m of potential unsaturated soil before encountering a restrictive horizon. The study confirmed that both the physical properties and chemistry of the soil can be valuable predictive tools for evaluating the long term operation of sewage effluent disposal systems.

Impact and interest:

4 citations in Scopus
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3 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 4036
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: on, site sewage treatment, soil chemistry, septic tanks, soil hydrology
DOI: 10.1080/15320380590928294
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES (050000) > SOIL SCIENCES (050300) > Soil Chemistry (excl. Carbon Sequestration Science) (050304)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > CIVIL ENGINEERING (090500) > Water Quality Engineering (090508)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES (070000) > OTHER AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES (079900) > Agricultural Hydrology (Drainage Flooding Irrigation Quality etc) (079901)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES (050000) > SOIL SCIENCES (050300) > Land Capability and Soil Degradation (050302)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING (090700) > Environmental Engineering Modelling (090702)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES (050000) > SOIL SCIENCES (050300) > Soil Physics (050305)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2005 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: First published in Soil and Sediment Contamination 14(3):pp. 211-230.
Deposited On: 21 Dec 2006
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:13

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