Biogeochemistry of aluminum in a forest catchment in the Czech Republic impacted by atmospheric inputs of strong acids

P. Krám, J. Hruška, C. T. Driscoll, C. E. Johnson

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22 Scopus citations


The Lysina catchment in the Czech Republic was studied to investigate the biogeochemical response of Al to high loadings of acidic deposition. The catchment supports Norway spruce plantations and is underlain by granite and podzolic soil. Atmospheric deposition to the site was characterized by high H+ and SO42- fluxes in throughfall. The volume-weighted average concentration of total Al (Alt) was 28 μmol L-1 in the O horizon soil solution. About 50% of Alt in the O horizon was in the form of potentially-toxic inorganic monomeric Al (Ali). In the E horizon, Alt increased to 71 μmol L-1, and Ali comprised 80% of Alt. The concentration of Alt (120 μmol L-1) and the fraction of Ali (85%) increased in the lower mineral soil due to increases in Ali and decreases in organic monomeric Al (Alo). Shallow ground water was less acidic and had lower Alt concentration (29 μmol L-1). The volume-weighted average concentration of Alt was extremely high in stream water (60 μmol L-1) with Ali accounting for about 60% of Alt. The major species of Ali in stream water were fluorocomplexes (Al-F) and aquo Al3+. Soil solutions in the root zone were undersaturated with respect to all Al-bearing mineral phases. However, stream water exhibited Ali concentrations close to solubility with jurbanite. Acidic waters and elevated Al concentrations reflected the limited supply of basic cations on the soil exchange complex and slow weathering, which was unable to neutralize atmospheric inputs of strong acids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1831-1836
Number of pages6
JournalWater, Air, & Soil Pollution
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1995


  • Al cycling
  • acid deposition
  • forest soil
  • jurbanite
  • leucogranite
  • soil solution
  • stream water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecological Modeling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution


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