Soil organic carbon balance and nutrients (NPK) availability under treated wastewater irrigation for bioenergy sorghum production in an arid ecosystem Academic Article uri icon


  • © 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This column study evaluated the effects of irrigation with two water qualities (WW and FW) to produce bioenergy sorghum on SOC balance, nutrients availability and salt constituents in two soils (TX and NM) amended with gypsum & elemental sulfur (S) and un-amended. Study results indicated that SOC concentration was higher in freshwater irrigated columns (7.41 g kg −1 ) than wastewater irrigated soils (7.32 g kg −1 ) across growth year-soil type-amendments-depth. Soils amended with gypsum and sulfur registered significantly higher value of 7.52 and 7.41 g kg −1 compared to 7.30 and 7.23 g kg −1 in non-amended soils under fresh and wastewater irrigation, respectively. Lower SOC in WW irrigated columns could be due to the combined effects of increased salinity and priming effects. Although SOC content initially increased in gypsum and S amended soils to about 10g kg −1 , at the end of the study SOC in all treatments decreased to levels significantly below the pre-study. WW irrigation added 2.00, 1.10 and 4.40 times the N, P and K added by fertilizers and was able to meet 65%, 87%, and 210% of bioenergy sorghum uptake of respective nutrients. Sulfates and chlorides of sodium and calcium were dominant salts, which significantly affected SOC and nutrients. Abbreviations: FW: freshwater; WW: treated wastewater; G + S: gypsum and elemental sulfur; NA: no amendment, TX: Texas soil and NM: New Mexico soil.

author list (cited authors)

  • Ganjegunte, G., Ulery, A., Niu, G., & Wu, Y.

citation count

  • 3

publication date

  • August 2018