Assessment of Human and Ecosystem Risk Due to Agricultural Waste Compost Application on Soils: A Review, Environmental Forensics, 15:312–328, 2014


Agricultural wastes (AW) are often characterized by varying pH and substantial contamination potential, which are mainly related to their high organic load, thus affecting—when improperly disposed of—soils, living organisms, and water bodies. Composting of AW is the most commonly used management option and results in the production of soil improver that enhances crop growth and contributes to agricultural sustainability. This study aims to present the framework for assessing human and ecosystem risk when compost produced from AW is applied on soil. In order to develop this framework, issues such as origin, composition and pretreatment of AW, application rates on soils, bioavailability and mobility of contaminants present in compost, exposure routes and rates as well as determination of the fate of contaminants in soil, air, and water, should be taken into consideration.

DOI: 10.1080/15275922.2014.950775

Kostas Komnitsas and Dimitra Zaharaki
School of Mineral Resources Engineering, Technical University Crete, Chania, Crete, Greece