Water, sediment and soil physicochemical interactions in freshwater, brackish and saline systems

Ferronato, Chiara (2015) Water, sediment and soil physicochemical interactions in freshwater, brackish and saline systems, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Scienze e tecnologie agrarie, ambientali e alimentari, 27 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/6881.
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The physicochemical interactions between water, sediment and soil deeply influence the formation and development of the ecosystem. In this research, different freshwater, brackish and saline subaqueous environments of Northern Italy were chosen as study area to investigate the physicochemical processes which occur at the interface between water and sediments, as well as the effects of soil submergence on ecosystem development. In the freshwater system of the Reno river basin, the main purpose was to define the heavy metals hazard in water and sediments of natural and artificial water courses. Heavy metals partitioning and speciation allowed to assess the environmental risk linked to the critical action of dredging canal sediments, for the maintenance of the hydraulic safety of plain lands. In addition, some bioremediation techniques were experimented for protecting sediments from heavy metals contamination, and for giving an answer to the problem of sediments management. In the brackish system of S. Vitale park, the development of hydromorphic and subaqueous soils was investigated. The study of soil profiles highlighted the presence of a soil continuum among pedons subjected to different saturation degrees. This investigation allowed to the identification of both morphological and physicochemical indicators, which characterize the formation of subaqueous soils and describe the soil hydromorphism in transitional soil systems. In the saline system of Grado lagoon, an ecosystem approach was used to define the role of water oscillation in soil characterization and plants colonization. This study highlighted the close relationship and the mutual influence of soil submergence and aeration, tide oscillation and vegetation cover, on the soil development. In view of climate change, this study contribute to understand and suppose how soil and landscape could evolve. However, a complete evaluation of hydromorphic soil functionality will be achieved only involving physiological and biochemical expertise in these kind of studies.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Ferronato, Chiara
Dottorato di ricerca
Scuola di dottorato
Scienze agrarie
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
Water, Soil, Sediment, Interfaces, Heavy metals, Availability, Sequential extraction, Bio-remediation, Dredging, Subaqueous, Hydromorphism, Salt marsh, Wetland
Data di discussione
18 Maggio 2015

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