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Potential for using the sugarcane biochar as a sealing barrier at soil contaminated with fipronil and 2,4-D

Grant number: 22/08941-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2022
Effective date (End): January 11, 2025
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Ecology - Ecosystems Ecology
Principal Investigator:Evaldo Luiz Gaeta Espindola
Grantee:Fernanda Oliva Pintucci
Host Institution: Escola de Engenharia de São Carlos (EESC). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):23/14498-2 - Characterization of bacterial communities in soils treated with biochar, BE.EP.IC


The increased use of pesticides, such as the insecticide fipronil and the herbicide 2,4-D applied on several crops in Brazil, causes several environmental impacts, such as the contamination of soils and surface and groundwaters. This contamination may provoke toxicity to non-target organisms with local extinction risks to indigenous species. Thus, alternatives raise to mitigate the adverse effects caused by pesticides. In this way, the biochar -carbonaceous material produced by pyrolysis - had the potential to absorb and remediate areas contaminated by organic substances. Therefore, this proposal aims to assess the potential use of biochar as a sealant layer in soils contaminated with fipronil and 2,4-D. For that, six experimental unities will be prepared (three replicates each), including non-treated and soil treated with fipronil or 2,4-D, with the addition or not of the biochar sealant layer. This design will permit the assessment of the capacity of biochar as a contention barrier of contamination to deep layers of soil and groundwater. The efficiency of insecticide retention will be assessed through toxicity tests using the species Folsomia candida in soil samples and the microcrustacean Ceriodaphnia silvestrii in water percolated through the soil column after three rain simulations. The herbicide retention efficiency in soil samples will be assessed by toxicity tests with the plant species Allium cepa and Eruca sativa L. and water samples with E. sativa L. species. The results will foment the discussion about biochar efficiency in soil remediation and the prevention of groundwater contamination in agricultural areas.

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