Acid sulfate soils
When exposed to air after being disturbed, soils containing iron sulfides produce sulfuric acid and often release toxic quantities of iron, aluminium and heavy metals.
Mangroves, salt marshes, floodplains, swamps, wetlands, estuaries, and brackish or tidal lakes, particularly in low-lying coastal areas, are ideal for acid sulfate soil formation.
Mapping of ASS enables affected parties to assess how significant the issue is to them, and to plan strategies to minimise and manage ASS disturbance.
Accurate and early identification is integral to developing sound strategies to manage ASS ‘hot spots’.
Acid sulfate soils can have major environmental, economic, engineering, and health impacts, and can constrain development, construction and other activities in affected areas.
The department's Queensland Acid Sulfate Soils Investigation Team (QASSIT) maps acid sulfate soils, and can give both general and technical advice on managing them.
Last reviewed 16 December 2011
Last updated 1 July 2009