Untreated and chemically treated Albizia coriaria, Erythrina abyssinica and Musa spp. were studied in batch for uptake of Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions at pH 2.0–9.0 and agitation time of 30–390 min. Optimum biosorption conditions were pH 4 for Pb2+ ions and pH 5 for Cd2+ ions, contact time was 3.5 hours at 24 ± 1 °C for 10 mg/L biosorbent dosage and initial metal ions concentration of 20 mg/L. Chemical treatment had a 10–17% biosorption efficiency enhancement for Cd2+ ions and a 1.6–2.3% reduction effect for Pb2+ ions. The sorption capacities for Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions for treated biosorbents were 1.760–1.738 mg g−1 compared to 1.415–1.539 mg g−1 for untreated materials. The pseudo second-order model suitably fitted the Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions biosorption data with regression coefficients (R2) of 0.9784–0.9999. Fitting of the Ho model to the experimental data showed that the biosorption mechanism for both metal ions studied was mainly a chemisorption process. Therefore, treated A. coriaria, E. abyssinica and Musa spp. were potential biosorbents for remediation of Cd2+ ions and the untreated materials suitable for removing Pb2+ ions from contaminated aqueous media.

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