Nano zerovalent iron (nZVI) is one of the most broadly applied nanomaterials in the fields of groundwater remediation which benefits from its high reactivity for pollutants. However, its successful application faces challenges due to its tendency to agglomerate or form passive (oxy)hydroxide corrosion. With the emerging microplastics (MPs) pollution in groundwater system in recent years and considerable data vacancy on its potential physicochemical and ecological effects, it complicates the situation for groundwater remediation. Hereby, we investigated the effects on metal removal by nZVI in groundwater in the presence of various MPs. The removal capacity of Cu (II), Cr (VI), Pb (II) and Zn (II) by nZVI was found to be inhibited to different degrees in the presence of MPs. Desorption of metallic ions was observed dependent on various metal species, with the highest desorption rate in Zn (II). Amongst all MPs investigated, including polystyrene (PS), polyethylene (PE), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), PVC poses the most adverse impact on metal desorption, attributing to its promotion of nZVI aging through electrostatic attraction. This study focused on the impact of MPs to metal remediation, beyond the general aspect of MPs hazard such as its toxic effects or delivery of contaminants. Moreover, groundwater was investigated to make a useful supplement to the research of MPs which primarily focuses on surface water.
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