Effects of temperature and NaCl on toxic metal retention in bioretention media

Kim H. Paus*, Joel Morgan, John S. Gulliver, Torove Leiknes, Raymond M. Hozalski

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Column experiments were performed to compare the removals of Cd, Cu, and Zn from synthetic storm water by bioretention media at 3.6 and 19.4°C and to investigate the potential for metals retained on the bioretention media to be mobilized by a 1,000∈∈mg/L NaCl solution. Bioretention media were effective at capturing Cd and Zn at both temperatures with sorption capacities greater at the lower temperature and increasing with increasing compost volume fraction (CVF). Removal of the primarily particulate-phase Cu was reduced at the lower temperature, suggesting that removal of particulate metals at low temperatures is of greater concern. The NaCl pulse caused accumulated metals in the bioretention media to leach in the order of Cd>Zn蠑Cu. The fractions of metal released from the columns in all cases were relatively small (≤3.5%) and decreased with increasing CVF. Overall, the results suggest that bioretention is likely to be effective for metals capture and retention under cold climate conditions, especially when then media contains at least 30% compost by volume.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number04014034
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering (United States)
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.


  • Bioretention
  • Snowmelt
  • Sodium chloride
  • Storm water
  • Temperature
  • Toxic metals

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • General Environmental Science


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