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Using compost from urban solid waste to prevent erosion in road embankments.

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Department of Civil Engineering, MITA Research Group, University of Granada, Spain.


This paper describes how compost, a by-product generated by solid waste treatment plants, can be usefully applied to road embankments to prevent erosion. Our study analyzed this process in terms of the following variables: (1) location and orientation; (2) embankment slope; (3) soil and compost characteristics; (4) compost dosage; (5) vegetation species; (6) plot dimensions; and (7) planting method. The results obtained focus on the vegetation survival rate, plant growth and germination; colonization of other species; cover crop for plots; and erosion estimation. It was found that when greater quantities of compost were added to embankments, soil loss was decreased. The addition of this material also produced a marked increase in plant growth, the survival rate of manually planted vegetation, the colonization of other species, as well as the cover crop. However, we observed that compost seemed to hinder the germination of hydroseeded species, whereas colonizing plants germinated more quickly. The side slope was not found to be a significant factor for manually planted species, but turned out to be crucial for hydroseeded varieties.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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