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Ground-water flow and effects of agricultural application of sewage sludge and other fertilizers on the chemical quality of sediments in the unsaturated zone and ground water near Platteville, Colorado, 1985-89

Water-Resources Investigations Report 94-4037

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Abstract

From fall 1985 through 1989, 6,431 dry tons of anaerobic, digested, sewage sludge were applied as a fertilizer on about 1 square mile of sandy farm- land near Platteville, Colorado. Mean nitrite plus nitrate as nitrogen concentrations in the surficial aquifer increased during the period of sewage- sludge application. However, the effects of municipal sewage sludge applied to the soil in section 16 are difficult to ascertain because anhydrous ammonia and cattle and chicken manure were applied to section 16 prior to sewage-sludge application and anhydrous ammonia was applied during the period of sewage-sludge application. Mostly ammonia plus organic nitrogen was detected in the unsaturated zone while nitrite plus nitrate as nitrogen predominated in the surficial aquifer. The areas of largest concentrations of nitrite plus nitrate as nitrogen were in the northeastern and southwestern quarter sections os section 16. Changes in nitrite plus nitrate as nitrogen concentrations with depth and time were detected in water samples from the multilevel ground-water sampling devices in the surficial aquifer. Nitrogen probably entered the saturated zone in the irrigated areas and low temporarily ponded areas and moved to the northeast with water in the surficial aquifer.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Ground-water flow and effects of agricultural application of sewage sludge and other fertilizers on the chemical quality of sediments in the unsaturated zone and ground water near Platteville, Colorado, 1985-89
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
94-4037
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1995
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey : Earth Science Information Center, Open-File Reports Section [distributor],
Description:
vi, 41 p. :ill., maps ;28 cm.