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Use of urban composts for the regeneration of a burnt Mediterranean soil: A laboratory approach

Abstract : In Mediterranean region, forest fires are a major problem leading to the desertification of the environment. Use of composts is considered as a solution for soil and vegetation rehabilitation. In this study, we determined under laboratory conditions the effects of three urban composts and their mode of application (laid on the soil surface or mixed into the soil) on soil restoration after fire: a municipal waste compost (MWC), a compost of sewage sludge mixed with green waste (SSC) and a green waste compost (GWC). Carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) mineralisation, total microbial biomass, fungal biomass and soil characteristics were measured during 77-day incubations in microcosms. The impact of composts input on hydrological behaviour related to erodibility was estimated by measuring runoff, retention and percolation (i.e. infiltration) of water using a rainfall simulator under laboratory conditions. Input of composts increased organic matter and soil nutrient content, and enhanced C and N mineralisation and total microbial biomass throughout the incubations, whereas it increased sporadically fungal biomass. For all these parameters, the MWC induced the highest improvement while GWC input had no significant effect compared to the control. Composts mixed with soil weakly limited runoff and infiltration whereas composts laid at the soil surface significantly reduced runoff and increased percolation and retention, particularly with the MWC.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, December 4, 2019 - 4:10:38 PM
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Antoine A. Cellier, Cédric Francou, Sabine Houot, Christine Ballini, Thierry Gauquelin, et al.. Use of urban composts for the regeneration of a burnt Mediterranean soil: A laboratory approach. Journal of Environmental Management, 2012, 95, pp.S238-S244. ⟨10.1016/j.jenvman.2010.10.042⟩. ⟨hal-02394124⟩



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