Special Issue "Effects of Wastewater and Pesticides on Soil Fertility and Microbiological Activity"

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Agricultural Soils".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (25 September 2023) | Viewed by 1597

Special Issue Editors

Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Health Science, Universidad Técnica de Manabí, Portoviejo, Ecuador
Interests: microbiology; environmental science; soil; soil analysis; environment; enzymes; PCR; water quality; environmental impact assessment; agriculture; soil enzymes; bioremediation; biofilms; quorum quenching
Guangdong Province Key Laboratory for Biotechnology Drug Candidates, School of Life Sciences and Biopharmaceutics, Guangdong Pharmaceutical University, Guangzhou 510006, China
Interests: biotechnology; microbiology; biosynthesis; bioactivity; biological activities; biocatalysis; biotransformation; enzymes; enzyme purification; enzymatic catalysis

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Unsustainable agricultural practices have a huge impact on soil pollution for diverse reasons; among these, the application of wastewater (untreated/treated) for irrigation and the use of excessive pesticides are key causes of soil pollution in agriculture. The consequence of agricultural soil pollution is the loss of soil fertility. It is not surprising that 20 million hectares are estimated to be irrigated with wastewater. Wastewater comprise a cocktail of pollutants that are both naturally occurring or man-made and can include chemical contaminants (e.g., nitrogen, bleach, salts, pesticides, metals, toxins produced by bacteria, and human or animal drugs) and biological contaminants. Wastewater can alter organic matter, soil pH, Ex-Ca capacity in top layers, and build up heavy metals in topsoils. On the other hand, soil microbial activities are inextricably linked with nutrient recycling and the decomposition of dead organic matter, which are the pillars of soil fertility. These contaminants have various adverse effects on the development, morphology, and metabolism of soil microorganisms by causing functional disturbances, protein denaturation, the destruction of cell membrane integrity, etc. In particular, soil microbial enzymes are efficient in revealing ecosystem perturbations, and they are very sensitive to agricultural management practices; thus, soil enzymes are good indicators of biogeochemical cycles, organic matter degradation, and soil remediation processes. Keeping this in view, the latest insights related to the influential effects of wastewater and pesticides on soil fertility and microbiological activities will not only protect soil fertility but also avoid problems of food insecurity and human health risks.

Therefore, this Special Issue calls for articles related to the theme of “wastewaters and pesticides versus soil fertility and microbial activities”. All types of articles, such as original research, opinions, and reviews, are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Naga Raju Maddela
Dr. Binbin Sheng
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agriculture is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • wastewater
  • pesticides
  • soil fertility
  • microbial activities
  • soil enzymes
  • antropogenic agents
  • soil pollution
  • food insecurity
  • human health risk

Published Papers (1 paper)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:


Soil Physicochemical Changes as Modulated by Treated Wastewater after Medium-and Long-Term Irrigations: A Case Study from Tunisia
Agriculture 2022, 12(12), 2139; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12122139 - 13 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 995
Treated wastewater (TWW) is considered as an alternative for agricultural irrigation. The aim of this study was to understand the medium- and long-term effects of TWW on soil physicochemical parameters. Two perimeters (P1 and P2)receiving TWW for 38 and 20 [...] Read more.
Treated wastewater (TWW) is considered as an alternative for agricultural irrigation. The aim of this study was to understand the medium- and long-term effects of TWW on soil physicochemical parameters. Two perimeters (P1 and P2)receiving TWW for 38 and 20 years, respectively, in Tunisiawere selected for study. In each perimeter, two water types were adopted: TWW and groundwater (GW). Soil physicochemical traits (pH, EC, and concentrations of Na+, K+, Ca2+, and Mg2+) were measured up to 100 cm, and three indexes were calculated: sodium adsorption ratio (SAR), cation ratio of structural stability (CROSS), and cation exchange capacity (CEC). Overall, all soil parameters were significantly affected in the irrigation area using GW. However, in the case of TWW, only the pH was found to be affected, increasing by 4.7% from P1 to P2. Moreover, compared to GW, TWW enhanced the soil salinity by 127%, particularly at deeper subsoils. More interestingly, the results revealed an accumulation of Mg2+, Ca2+, and K+ and a depletion of Na+ at the soil surface. Notably, TWW showed the lowest CROSS and SAR indexes, indicating the benefits of applying TWW even after long-term use in improving soil physicochemical parameters such as sodicity and structural stability. Our results provide valuable information for decision-makers to use wastewater in irrigated marginal soils. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop