Arsenic mobilization from iron oxyhydroxides is regulated by organic matter carbon to nitrogen (C:N) ratio

A. R. M. Solaiman, A. A. Meharg, A. G. Gault, J. M. Charnock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Arsenic (As) is mobilized from delta and floodplain aquifer sediments throughout S.E. Asia via reductive dissolution of As bound to iron (Fe) oxyhydroxides. The reductive driving force is organic carbon, but its source and constitution is uncertain. Here batch incubation experiments were conducted to investigate the role of organic matter (OM) carbon:nitrogen (C:N) ratio on the mobilization of arsenic, Fe and N from As dosed, Fe oxyhydroxide coated sands. As mobilization into pore waters from the sand was strongly regulated by the C:N ratio of the OM, and also the concentration of OM present. The lower the C:N, the more As released. Fe and ammonium release were similarly dependent on the quality and quantity of OM, but Fe mobilization was more rapid and ammonium release slower than As suggesting that the mobilization of these 3 moieties although interdependent, were not directly linked. It was concluded that low ON ratios for OM responsible for reducing aquifers were As in groundwater is observed were likely. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)480-484
Number of pages5
JournalEnvironment International
Issue number3
Early online date14 Sep 2008
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009


  • arsenic
  • C:N ratio
  • iron oxyhydroxide
  • organic matter
  • Bangladesh groundwater
  • reducing bacteria
  • West-Bengal
  • sediments
  • incubations
  • extraction
  • reduction
  • aquifer
  • release
  • soils


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