Water Science & Technology Vol 14 No 12 pp 3144 © IWA Publishing 1982
Influence of Micropollutants on Vegetation
R. D. Davis
Water Research Centre, Stevenage Laboratory, Elder Way, Stevenage, Herts., SG1 1TH, U.K.
Potentially phytotoxic inorganic and organic micropollutants are listed and some of their effects are described. The use of plant analysis for assessing phytotoxicity in terms of relative pollution hazard is discussed. The discharge of sludges and effluents are facets of the water cycle which result in exposure of plants to micropollutants. When sewage sludge is applied to agricultural land, determination of ‘total’ concentrations of micropollutants in soils indicates only the extent of contamination. Its significance in terms of phytotoxicity and transfer to foodchains depends on soil conditions and crop type. Biological toxicity tests can be used both to screen for phytotoxicity in sludges and effluents before their discharge, and to trace sources of phytotoxic pollutants.
Keywords: Micropollutants; heavy metals; phytotoxicity; plant analysis; sludge and effluent utilisation on land; bioassay.
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