Barley Seed Germination/Root Elongation Toxicity Test For Evaluation Of Sludge Pre-Treatment

Eva Eriksson, Kresten Ole Kusk, Mie Barrett Sørensen, Cevilie Møller Kudahl, Åsa Davidsson

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    Application of sludge from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) on agricultural land is an approach for nutrient recycling that rise challenges due to recalcitrant and harmful pollutants. In this study we assessed the feasibility of a seed germination test to evaluate sludge ecotoxicity and compared germination responses from two test parameters, root elongation and seed germination (sprouts elongation) of the barley (Hordeum vulgare). 2nd objective was to evaluate sewage sludge pre-treatments at batch-scale of sludge samples from two WWTPs using anaerobic digestion, and thermal and ozonation pre-treatments. Glyphosate and eco-labelled soil were used as references. Inhibition of germination of seeds exposed to the glyphosate and sludge was registered and thus germination was successfully applied for sludge ecotoxicity assessment, and using the root elongation as the end-point was both faster and more precise than the sprout elongation. In comparison of pre-treated raw samples and pre-treaded and subsequently digested sludge the effects of the pre-treatments were limited and hence, the anaerobic digestion in it-self gave the foremost detoxification.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2013
    Number of pages8
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    Event1st International IWA Conference on Holistic Sludge Management - Västerås, Sweden
    Duration: 6 May 20138 May 2013
    Conference number: 1


    Conference1st International IWA Conference on Holistic Sludge Management
    Internet address


    • Detoxification
    • Growth inhibition
    • Ozonation
    • Sewage sludge
    • Thermal treatment
    • Toxic responses


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