Nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorous, and sulfur are essential for plant and microorganism growth. They are either applied to the land surface to increase its fertility or discarded with waste streams that contain appreciable amounts of these nutrients. These nutrients, however, can have appreciable concentrations that can leach into the ground and adversely affect the quality of groundwater.
Nitrogen (N) is found in waste, soil, and the atmosphere in various forms such as ammonia, ammonium, nitrite, nitrate, and molecular nitrogen. Nitrogen is converted to ammonium (NH 4) by a process called ammonification. Because of its positive charge, ammonium can be held in the soil on cation exchange sites. Ammonium can also be converted temporarily to nitrite (NO 2) and then to nitrate (NO 3) by aerobic nitrifying organisms through a process called nitrification. Ammonification and nitrification normally occur in the unsaturated zone where microorgan
MEASURED KOC VALUES FOR
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