State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project Id: 2009WV122B
Title: (WRI-117) Controlling Phosphate in Agricultural Field Leachate Using Mine Drainage Treatment Ferrihydrite
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2009
End Date: 2/28/2011
Congressional District: 1
Focus Categories: Water Quality, Treatment, Hydrology
Keywords: phosphorus, water quality, acid mine drainage, nutrients, agriculture
Principal Investigators: Paul Ziemkiewicz; Herd, Richard; McDonald, Louis M; O'Neal, Melissa J.
Federal Funds: $ 0
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 0
Abstract: Phosphorus is a nutrient of concern associated with eutrophication of local waters in the Eastern Panhandle of WV and the Chesapeake Bay. According to the Chesapeake Bay Program phosphorous contamination of the Bay is associated with excess application of fertilizers and animal manures on agricultural lands within the watershed. The phosphorous not taken up by plants can be lost in surface runoff or in groundwater draining from agricultural lands.

The sludge that forms from the treatment of acid mine drainage (AMD) is capable of adsorbing water soluble phosphorus. However, the extent to which this sludge can attenuate water soluble phosphorus in actual field conditions has not been determined.

We propose a two phase study. In the first year we will: 1) identify sources of AMD treatment sludge, 2) characterize the sludge for its ability to adsorb water soluble phosphorus, 3) identify field sites for field study, and 4) characterize field site soils and phosphorus loading to local waters. In year two we will apply AMD treatment sludges onto the fields and monitor the attenuation of phosphorus.

Progress/Completion Report, 2009, PDF
Progress/Completion Report, 2010, PDF

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