Chromium, Copper, Nickel and Zinc Uptake in Corn (Zea mays L.) Irrigated With Electroplating Effluent

Benjamin R de Jesus, Jr., Salvacion M Ritual, Orlex B Yllano
Vol 10 No 2 (2007), pp. 49-58




Due to the scarcity of freshwater supply, effluent from industries is significantly becoming an alternative in irrigating crops. Despite its nutrient-rich components, there are some apprehensions in utilizing it because it contains heavy metals, which are detrimental when present in critical amounts. This study investigated the uptake of chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), and zinc (Zn) in corn irrigated with electroplating effluent using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry (AAS). Results indicated greater accumulation of the said elements in the root rather than in the shoot tissues. The amount of Cr, Ni and Zn in the root tissues increased with the increasing concentrations of electroplating effluents. In the shoot tissues, greater accumulation of Ni (14 and 16 ppm) at 75% and 100% was determined, while the concentrations of Zn, Cr and Cu were in limited amounts. The metal accumulation profile of the root tissues in 100% effluent was in the order of Ni (427.7 ppm) > Zn (77.1 ppm) > Cr (46.6 ppm) > Cu (31.0 ppm) while in the shoot tissues it was in the order of Zn (33 ppm) >Ni (16.3 ppm) > Cu (7.8 ppm) > Cr (2.8 ppm). The concentrations of these elements in corn tissues fall below the reported critical levels in plants. Hence, the use of electroplating effluents in irrigating corn is a feasible option.


Keywords: irrigation, wastewater management, metal uptake, crop

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