Irrigation with coalbed methane co-produced water reduces forage yield and increases soil sodicity however does not impact forage quality

Abstract

The extraction of coalbed methane produces a significant amount of coalbed methane co-produced water (CBMW). Coalbed methane co-produced water is often characterized by high levels of pH, total dissolved solids (TDS), sodium (Na) and bicarbonate (HCO−3) and if used for irrigation without treatment, it may be detrimental to the surrounding soil, plants and environment. CBMW ideally should be disposed of by reinjection into the ground, but because of the significant cost associated, CBMW is commonly discharged onto soil or water surfaces. This study was conducted to elucidate the effect of the CBMW (with TDS value of <1500 ppm) at various blending ratios with fresh water on the yield and quality of representative forage crops [i.e., oat (Avena sativa) and alfalfa (Medicago sativa)]. Various blends of CBMW with fresh water reduced fresh and dry weight of alfalfa by 21.5–32% and 13–30%, respectively, and fresh and dry weight of oat by 0–17% and 0–14%, respectively. Irrigation with various blends of CBMW and fresh water increased soil pH and soil sodium adsorption ratio. However, forage quality parameters such as crude protein (CP), acid detergent fiber (ADF), neutral detergent fiber (NDF), total digestible nutrients (TDN) and relative feed value (RFV) of both forage crops remained unaffected.

Description

© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. cc-by

Keywords

Alfalfa, Alternative water source, Forage crops, Forage nutritive value, Oat, Relative feed value, Sodium adsorption ratio

Citation

Poudyal, S., & Zheljazkov, V.D.. 2021. Irrigation with coalbed methane co-produced water reduces forage yield and increases soil sodicity however does not impact forage quality. Sustainability (Switzerland), 13(6). https://doi.org/10.3390/su13063545

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