Comment on “thermal remediation alters soil properties – A review” J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2018-01-05 M. Usman
This comment is intended to highlight the role of thermal treatment to improve the availability of organic pollutants in contaminated soils for subsequent remediation by other techniques.
The parakeet protectors: Understanding opposition to introduced species management J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2018-01-02 Sarah L. Crowley, Steve Hinchliffe, Robbie A. McDonald
The surveillance and control of introduced and invasive species has become an increasingly important component of environmental management. However, initiatives targeting ‘charismatic’ wildlife can be controversial. Opposition to management, and the subsequent emergence of social conflict, present significant challenges for would-be managers. Understanding the substance and development of these disputes is therefore vital for improving the legitimacy and effectiveness of wildlife management. It also provides important insights into human-wildlife relations and the ‘social dimensions’ of wildlife management. Here, we examine how the attempted eradication of small populations of introduced monk parakeets (Myiopsitta monachus) from England has been challenged and delayed by opposition from interested and affected communities. We consider how and why the UK Government's eradication initiative was opposed, focusing on three key themes: disagreements about justifying management, the development of affective attachments between people and parakeets, and the influence of distrustful and antagonistic relationships between proponents and opponents of management. We draw connections between our UK case and previous management disputes, primarily in the USA, and suggest that the resistance encountered in the UK might readily have been foreseen. We conclude by considering how management of this and other introduced species could be made less conflict-prone, and potentially more effective, by reconfiguring management approaches to be more anticipatory, flexible, sensitive, and inclusive.
A methodology to modify land uses in a transit oriented development scenario J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-12-29 Akshay Sahu
Assessing distributions of two invasive species of contrasting habits in future climate J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-12-28 Rajendra Mohan Panda, Mukunda Dev Behera, Partha Sarathi Roy
Understanding the impact of climate change on species invasion is crucial for sustainable biodiversity conservation. Through this study, we try to answer how species differing in phenological cycles, specifically Cassia tora and Lantana camara, differ in the manner in which they invade new regions in India in the future climate. Since both species occupy identical niches, exploring their invasive potential in different climate change scenarios will offer critical insights into invasion and inform ecosystem management. We use three modelling protocols (i.e., maximum entropy, generalised linear model and generalised additive model) to predict the current distribution. Projections are made for both moderate (A1B) and extreme (A2) IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) scenarios for the year 2050 and 2100. The study reveals that the distributions of C. tora (annual) and L. camara (perennial) would depend on the precipitation of the warmest quarter and moisture availability. C. tora may demonstrate physiological tolerance to the mean diurnal temperature range and L. camara to the solar radiation. C. tora may invade central India, while L. camara may invade the Western Himalaya, parts of the Eastern Himalaya and the Western Ghats. The distribution ranges of both species could shift in the northern and north-eastern directions in India, owing to changes in moisture availability. The possible alterations in precipitation regimes could lead to water stress, which might have cascading effects on species invasion. L. camara might adapt to climate change better compared with C. tora. This comparative analysis of the future distributions of two invasive plants with contrasting habits demonstrates that temporal complementarity would prevail over the competition.
Effect of cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide on uptake of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons by carrots J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-12-23 Ni Ni, Fang Wang, Yang Song, Mingyun Jia, Yongrong Bian, Xinlun Yang, Chenggang Gu, Xin Jiang
The role of constructed wetlands in a new circular economy, resource oriented, and ecosystem services paradigm J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-12-07 F. Masi, A. Rizzo, M. Regelsberger
Insights to bioprocess and treatment competence of urban wetlands J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-11-26 Durga Madhab Mahapatra, N.V. Joshi, T.V. Ramachandra
Spatial patterns of heavy metal accumulation in sediments and macrophytes of Bellandur wetland, Bangalore J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-11-20 T.V. Ramachandra, P.B. Sudarshan, M.K. Mahesh, S. Vinay
Heavy metals are one among the toxic chemicals and accumulation in sediments and plants has been posing serious health impacts. Wetlands aid as kidneys of the landscape and help in remediation through uptake of nutrients, heavy metals and other contaminants. The analyses of macrophytes and sediment samples help in evaluating pollution status in aquatic environment. In this study concentration of six heavy metals (Cadmium (Cd), Chromium (Cr), Copper (Cu), Nickel (Ni), Lead (Pb) and Zinc (Zn)) were assessed in sediment and dominant macrophyte samples collected from Bellandur Lake, largest Lake of Bangalore, India. Sediment samples reveal of heavy metals in the inlet regions and shore samples. The accumulation of metals in sediments were in the order of Zn > Cu > Cr > Pb > Ni > Cd. All metals exceeded the critical limits of metals in the sediment. Concentration of different metals in the macrophyte samples ranked as: Cr > Cu > Zn > Pb > Ni > Cd. Chromium and Copper were found to be more than critical range. Typha angustata had the higher accumulation of all metals except chromium.
Stabilisation and dewatering of primary sludge using ferrate(VI) pre-treatment followed by freeze-thaw in simulated drainage beds J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-11-20 James Diak, Banu Örmeci
This study evaluated the ability of potassium ferrate(VI) and freeze-thaw to stabilise and dewater primary sludge. Potassium ferrate(VI) additions of 0.5 and 5.0 g/L were used as a pre-treatment prior to freeze-thaw. Samples were frozen at −10, −20 and −30 °C, and were kept frozen for 1, 8 and 15 days. The samples were subsequently thawed at room temperature in a setup which allowed meltwater to be separated from the sludge cake via gravity drainage. The meltwater was characterised in terms of fecal coliform, soluble chemical oxygen demand (COD), soluble proteins, soluble carbohydrates, pH and turbidity. The sludge cake was characterised in terms of fecal coliform, total solids (TS) and volatile solids (VS). Freeze-thaw with gravity meltwater drainage reduced the sludge volume by up to 79%. After being frozen for only 1 day, the concentrations of fecal coliform in many of the primary sludge samples were reduced to <1000 MPN/g dry solids (DS), representing >3-log inactivation in some cases. However, pre-treatment of the primary sludge with ≤5.0 g/L potassium ferrate(VI) resulted in significant increases in soluble proteins, soluble carbohydrates, and sCOD, and reduced the effectiveness of stand-alone freeze-thaw. Follow-up experiments using higher doses ranging from 5.1 to 24.9 g/L of potassium ferrate(VI) demonstrated that >5-log inactivation of fecal coliform in raw primary sludge can be achieved within 15 min using 15 g/L of potassium ferrate(VI), and the resulting concentration of fecal coliform in the sludge was 1023 MPN/g DS. Pre-treatment with 22.0 g/L of potassium ferrate(VI), followed by freeze-thaw, with only 3 days frozen, reduced the concentration of fecal coliform to below the detection limit in the meltwater and the sludge cake. This demonstrates that potassium ferrate(VI) and freeze-thaw offers the flexibility to adjust the ferrate(VI) dose to meet treatment requirements for land application, and can be used as a stand-alone sludge treatment technology for primary sludge that achieves both treatment and dewatering.
Remote sensing based deforestation analysis in Mahanadi and Brahmaputra river basin in India since 1985 J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-11-15 M.D. Behera, P. Tripathi, P. Das, S.K. Srivastava, P.S. Roy, C. Joshi, P.R. Behera, J. Deka, P. Kumar, M.L. Khan, O.P. Tripathi, T. Dash, Y.V.N. Krishnamurthy
Land use and land cover (LULC) change has been recognized as a key driver of global climate change by influencing land surface processes. Being in constant change, river basins are always subjected to LULC changes, especially decline in forest cover to give way for agricultural expansion, urbanization, industrialization etc. We used on-screen digital interpretation technique to derive LULC maps from Landsat images at three decadal intervals i.e., 1985, 1995 and 2005 of two major river basins of India. Rain-fed, Mahanadi river basin (MRB) attributed to 55% agricultural area wherein glacier-fed, Brahmaputra river basin (BRB) had only 16% area under agricultural land. Though conversion of forest land for agricultural activities was the major LULC changes in both the basins, the rate was higher for BRB than MRB. While water body increased in MRB could be primarily attributed to creation of reservoirs and aquaculture farms; snow and ice melting attributed to creation of more water bodies in BRB. Scrub land acted as an intermediate class for forest conversion to barren land in BRB, while direct conversion of scrub land to waste land and crop land was seen in MRB. While habitation contributed primarily to LULC changes in BRB, the proximity zones around habitat and other socio-economic drivers contributed to LULC change in MRB. Comparing the predicted result with actual LULC of 2005, we obtained >97% modelling accuracy; therefore it is expected that the Dyna-CLUE model has very well predicted the LULC for the year 2025. The predicted LULC of 2025 and corresponding LULC changes in these two basins acting as early warning, and with the past 2-decadal change analysis this study is believed to help the land use planners for improved regional planning to create balanced ecosystem, especially in a changing climate.
Urban flood mitigation planning for Guwahati: A case of Bharalu basin J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-11-10 Tanaya Sarmah, Sutapa Das
Guwahati, the capital city of Assam and the gateway to the seven north-eastern Indian states, is located in the Brahmaputra valley—one of the most flood prone regions of the world. The city receives an average annual rainfall of 1688 mm and is highly vulnerable towards frequent urban floods because of uncontrolled dumping of solid waste and siltation have choked the natural water channels. This coupled with the absence of an integrated drainage network and rapid urbanisation causes floods in many parts of the city, after a quick downpour. Bharalu river is the main natural water channel of the city and Bharalu basin is the most vulnerable one. The present paper is an attempt to plan for urban flood mitigation, by designing an integrated drainage network for the Bharalu basin which includes the low-lying urbanized areas bordered by the Guwahati-Shillong Road, the Radha Gobindo Baruah Road and the Rajgarh Road. Data regarding land use, flood level, rainfall, urban pattern and vulnerability towards urban flood were collected from available literature, field survey to find highest water level for 11.4 km road stretch, expert opinion survey from 18 experts and feedback from 77 community elders who have been residing in the city since the 1980s. The Bharalu basin is divided into seven drainage blocks and storm run-off has been calculated based on the inputs. Seven different trapezoidal drainage sections were designed to form an integrated drainage network which is ‘self-healing’ to a certain extent. This can serve as a template for the other catchment basins and to design a drainage network for the entire Guwahati city, thereby reducing urban flood hazard to a significant extent. The study illustrates the necessity of an urban flood mitigation planning approach in sub-Himalayan urban settlements such as Guwahati.
Multi-hazard risk assessment of coastal vulnerability from tropical cyclones – A GIS based approach for the Odisha coast J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-11-08 Bishnupriya Sahoo, Prasad K. Bhaskaran
The coastal region bordering the East coast of India is a thickly populated belt exposed to high risk and vulnerability from natural hazards such as tropical cyclones. Tropical cyclone frequencies that develop over the Bay of Bengal (average of 5–6 per year) region are much higher as compared to the Arabian Sea thereby posing a high risk factor associated with storm surge, inland inundation, wind gust, intense rainfall, etc. The Odisha State in the East coast of India experiences the highest number of cyclone strikes as compared to West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu. To express the destructive potential resulting from tropical cyclones the Power Dissipation Index (PDI) is a widely used metric globally. A recent study indicates that PDI for cyclones in the present decade have increased about six times as compared to the past. Hence there is a need to precisely ascertain the coastal vulnerability and risk factors associated with high intense cyclones expected in a changing climate. As such there are no comprehensive studies attempted so far on the determination of Coastal Vulnerability Index (CVI) for Odisha coast that is highly prone to cyclone strikes. With this motivation, the present study makes an attempt to investigate the physical, environmental, social, and economic impacts on coastal vulnerability associated with tropical cyclones for the Odisha coast. The study also investigates the futuristic projection of coastal vulnerability over this region expected in a changing climate scenario. Eight fair weather parameters along with storm surge height and onshore inundation were used to estimate the Physical Vulnerability Index (PVI). Thereafter, the PVI along with social, economic, and environmental vulnerability was used to determine the overall CVI using the GIS based approach. The authors believe that the comprehensive nature of this study is expected to benefit coastal zone management authorities.
Response of heterogeneous vegetation to aerosol radiative forcing over a northeast Indian station J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-10-20 R. Latha, B. Vinayak, B.S. Murthy
Importance of atmospheric aerosols through direct and indirect effects on hydrological cycle is highlighted through multiple studies. This study tries to find how much the aerosols can affect evapo-transpiration (ET), a key component of the hydrological cycle over high NDVI (normalized difference vegetation index)/dense canopy, over Dibrugarh, known for vast tea plantation. The radiative effects of aerosols are calculated using satellite (Terra-MODIS) and reanalysis data on daily and monthly scales. Aerosol optical depth (AOD) obtained from satellite and ground observations compares well. Aerosol radiative forcing (ARF), calculated using MERRA data sets of ‘clean-clear radiation’ and ‘clear-radiation’ at the surface, shows a lower forcing efficiency, 35 Wm−zs, that is about half of that of ground observations. As vegetation controls ET over high NDVI area to the maximum and that gets modified through ARF, a regression equation is fitted between ET, AOD and NDVI for this station as ET = 0.25 + (−84.27) × AOD + (131.51) × NDVI that explains 82% of ‘daily’ ET variation using easily available satellite data. ET is found to follow net radiation closely and the direct relation between soil moisture and ET is weak on daily scale over this station as it may be acting through NDVI.
Environmental non-governmental organizations and urban environmental governance: Evidence from China J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-10-06 Guangqin Li, Qiao He, Shuai Shao, Jianhua Cao
Environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs) play an increasingly important role in the process of urban environmental governance, especially in some developing countries such as China. However, existing studies pay little attention to such an issue in China. In this paper, we consider 113 cities in China from the pollution information transparency index (PITI) list released by ENGOs as the treatment group and some other cities as the control group, and use the difference-in-differences (DID) model and propensity score matching DID (PSM-DID) model to explore the role of ENGOs in China's urban environmental governance. The results show that ENGOs play a significantly positive and robust role in China's urban environmental governance. Furthermore, using regression analysis for eastern, central, and western China, we find that the influence of ENGOs exists in eastern and central China rather than in western China. In addition, the results of the Placebo test indicate that the effect of ENGOs shows an upward trend since 2008. We suggest that ENGOs' role should be strengthened in China, and governments at various levels should take into account environmental information released by ENGOs and consider appropriate measures to improve local environment quality using the obtained information.
Spatial landscape model to characterize biological diversity using R statistical computing environment J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-10-04 Hariom Singh, R.D. Garg, Harish C. Karnatak, Arijit Roy
Due to urbanization and population growth, the degradation of natural forests and associated biodiversity are now widely recognized as a global environmental concern. Hence, there is an urgent need for rapid assessment and monitoring of biodiversity on priority using state-of-art tools and technologies. The main purpose of this research article is to develop and implement a new methodological approach to characterize biological diversity using spatial model developed during the study viz. Spatial Biodiversity Model (SBM). The developed model is scale, resolution and location independent solution for spatial biodiversity richness modelling. The platform-independent computation model is based on parallel computation. The biodiversity model based on open-source software has been implemented on R statistical computing platform. It provides information on high disturbance and high biological richness areas through different landscape indices and site specific information (e.g. forest fragmentation (FR), disturbance index (DI) etc.). The model has been developed based on the case study of Indian landscape; however it can be implemented in any part of the world. As a case study, SBM has been tested for Uttarakhand state in India. Inputs for landscape ecology are derived through multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) techniques in an interactive command line environment. MCDM with sensitivity analysis in spatial domain has been carried out to illustrate the model stability and robustness. Furthermore, spatial regression analysis has been made for the validation of the output.
Composted biogas residue and spent mushroom substrate as a growth medium for tomato and pepper seedlings J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-27 Xingyao Meng, Jiali Dai, Yue Zhang, Xiaofen Wang, Wanbin Zhu, Xufeng Yuan, Hongli Yuan, Zongjun Cui
A composted material derived from biogas production residues, spent mushroom substrate (SMS) and pig manure was evaluated as a partial or total replacement for peat in growth medium for tomato and pepper seedlings. Five different substrates were tested: T1, compost + perlite (5:1, v:v); T2, compost + peat + perlite (4:1:1, v:v:v); T3, compost + peat + perlite (2.5:2.5:1, v:v:v); T4, compost + peat + perlite (1:4:1, v:v:v); and CK, a commercial peat + perlite (5:1, v:v). The physical-chemical characteristics of the various media were analyzed, and the germination rate and morphological growth were also measured. Real-time Quantitative PCR (qPCR) was used to quantify Fusarium concentrations. The addition of compost to peat-based growth medium increased the pH, electrical conductivity, air porosity, bulk density, and nutrition (NPK), and decreased the water holding capacity and total porosity. The use of compost did not affect the percent germination at day 15 of the tomato and pepper seedlings. The addition of compost resulted in better or comparable seedling quality compared with CK and fertilized CK. The best growth parameters were seen in tomato and pepper seedlings grown in T1 and T2, with higher morphological growth in comparison with CK and fertilized CK. However, T2 showed the highest Fusarium concentration compared to compost and all growth media. Fusarium concentrations in T1, T3, and T4 did not differ significantly from those in CK for tomato seedlings, and those in T1 and T4 were also similar to those in CK for pepper seedlings. The results suggest that biogas residues and SMS compost is a good alternative to peat, allowing 100% replacement, and that 20–50% replacement produces tomato and pepper seedlings with higher morphological growth and lower Fusarium concentrations.
The Self-sustained High temperature Synthesis (SHS) technology as novel approach in the management of asbestos waste J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-21 Laura Gaggero, Maurizio Ferretti
The SHS technique was experimented in chrysotile breakdown. By means of two reactions such as Mg3Si2O5(OH)4 + Fe2O3 + 3 Mg and 2Mg3Si2O5(OH)4 + Fe3O4 + 4 Mg the chrysotile was completely converted into forsterite-rich olivine. Different mixtures of hematite + Mg and magnetite + Mg were tested with chrysotile to establish the maximum chrysotile amount in order to allow the reaction. In comparison with conventional thermal treatments, the SHS process is characterized by a fast reaction, needs low activation energy and the apparatus is simple. For these reasons, the asbestos neutralisation is carried out with positive balance of time and costs of the process. Furthermore, the combustion product can be re-used as secondary material.
Faecal sludge treatment and utilization by hydrothermal carbonization J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-21 Krailak Fakkaew, Thammarat Koottatep, Chongrak Polprasert
Hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) is a thermal conversion process that can be applied to convert faecal sludge into carbonaceous solids, called hydrochar. In this study, the technical feasibility of hydrochar production by HTC of faecal sludge was investigated. Experimental results showed energy contents of the produced hydrochar to be about 19–20 MJ/kg, comparable to natural coals and therefore usable as a solid fuel. The produced hydrochar contained a carbon content of approximately 40%wt, which could be processed further to make it suitable as an anode in batteries. The produced hydrochar also had adsorption characteristics for removing heavy metals and micropollutants in wastewater. Liquid by-products obtained from the HTC process were found to contain high concentrations of organic matter, while the amount of gas produced was 10 L-gas/kg-FS with CO2 is the main component. The bio-methane potential tests of this liquid product suggested the methane production of about 2.0 L-CH4 per kg-faecal sludge could be obtained.
Toilet revolution in China J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-21 Shikun Cheng, Zifu Li, Sayed Mohammad Nazim Uddin, Heinz-Peter Mang, Xiaoqin Zhou, Jian Zhang, Lei Zheng, Lingling Zhang
The wide-spread prevalence of unimproved sanitation technologies has been a major cause of concern for the environment and public health, and China is no exception to this. Towards the sanitation issue, toilet revolution has become a buzzword in China recently. This paper elaborates the backgrounds, connotations, and actions of the toilet revolution in China. The toilet revolution aims to create sanitation infrastructure and public services that work for everyone and that turn waste into value. Opportunities for implementing the toilet revolution include: fulfilling Millennium Development Goals and new Sustainable Development Goals; government support at all levels for popularizing sanitary toilet; environmental protection to alleviate wastewater pollution; resource recovery from human waste and disease prevention for health and wellbeing improvement. Meanwhile, the challenges faced are: insufficient funding and policy support, regional imbalance and lagging approval processes, weak sanitary awareness and low acceptance of new toilets, lack of R&D and service system. The toilet revolution requires a concerted effort from many governmental departments. It needs to address not only technology implementation, but also social acceptance, economic affordability, maintenance issues and, increasingly, gender considerations. Aligned with the ecological sanitation principles, it calls for understanding issues across the entire sanitation service chain. Public-private partnership is also recommended to absorb private capital to make up the lack of funds, as well as arouse the enthusiasm of the public.
Co-pelletization of sewage sludge and agricultural wastes J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-21 Ersel Yilmaz, Małgorzata Wzorek, Selin Akçay
This paper concerns the process of production and properties of pellets based on biomass wastes. Co-pelletization was performed for sewage sludge from municipal wastewater treatment plant and other biomass material such as animal and olive wastes. The aim of the present study was to identify the key factors affecting on the sewage sludge and agricultural residues co-pelletization processes conditions. The impact of raw material type, pellet length, moisture content and particle size on the physical properties was investigated. The technic and technological aspects of co-pelletization were discussed in detail. The physical parameters of pellets, i.e.: drop strength, absorbability and water resistance were determined. Among others, also energy parameters: low and high heat value, content of ash and volatiles were presented. Results showed the range of raw materials moisture, which is necessary to obtain good quality biofuels and also ratio of sewage sludge in pelletizing materials. The analysis of the energetic properties has indicated that the pellet generated on the basis of the sewage sludge and another biomass materials can be applied in the processes of co-combustion with coal. Those biofuels are characterised with properties making them suitable for use in thermal processes and enabling their transport and storage.
Detection of the power lines in UAV remote sensed images using spectral-spatial methods J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-18 Rishav Bhola, Nandigam Hari Krishna, K.N. Ramesh, J. Senthilnath, Gautham Anand
In this paper, detection of the power lines on images acquired by Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) based remote sensing is carried out using spectral-spatial methods. Spectral clustering was performed using Kmeans and Expectation Maximization (EM) algorithm to classify the pixels into the power lines and non-power lines. The spectral clustering methods used in this study are parametric in nature, to automate the number of clusters Davies-Bouldin index (DBI) is used. The UAV remote sensed image is clustered into the number of clusters determined by DBI. The k clustered image is merged into 2 clusters (power lines and non-power lines). Further, spatial segmentation was performed using morphological and geometric operations, to eliminate the non-power line regions. In this study, UAV images acquired at different altitudes and angles were analyzed to validate the robustness of the proposed method. It was observed that the EM with spatial segmentation (EM-Seg) performed better than the Kmeans with spatial segmentation (Kmeans-Seg) on most of the UAV images.
Simulation of a dynamical ecotourism system with low carbon activity: A case from western China J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-11 Yuan He, Ping Huang, Hong Xu
Currently, sustainable tourism is becoming more and more important in developing ecological economies. To achieve low-carbon development, some industries, such as logistics and municipal solid waste, have already taken action, but tourism has not attached sufficient importance to this issue. This paper designs an ecotourism system including tourism, carbon waste (solid waste and sewage), and ecology (water supply and green areas) to simulate low-carbon ecotourism through a quantitative approach. This paper explores the tourism system as well as some interactive factors and studies their quantitative relationship based on historical data. A feedback-loop dynamical system model is designed to simulate tourism, waste carbon, and ecology simultaneously. Finally, a case study applying the feedback-loop dynamical system model to Leshan City, a typical travel destination with colorful natural resources in western China, is conducted to indicate the development of ecotourism in an environmentally friendly economy, which verifies the positive effects of the model. Results show a coordinating upward tendency of tourism, solid waste carbon, and ecology from the dynamical model. When tourism increases, solid waste accumulation increases; however, the amount of sewage dumped directly into nature decreases sharply. After analysis of investment policy scenarios, the research indicates that more funds for sewage treatment will attract more tourists. To maintain the equilibrium of carbon waste, more funds shall be invested in solid waste treatment in the long term. Some discussions about local policy are included.
Simultaneous recovery of calcium phosphate granules and methane in anaerobic treatment of black water: Effect of bicarbonate and calcium fluctuations J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-09 J.R. Cunha, T. Tervahauta, R.D. van der Weijden, L. Hernández Leal, G. Zeeman, C.J.N. Buisman
Calcium phosphate (CaP) granules were discovered in the anaerobic treatment of vacuum collected black water (BW), using upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) technology. This allows simultaneous recovery of CaP granules and methane in the UASB reactor. However, the role of BW composition on CaP granulation is not yet understood. Moreover, CaP granulation was not observed in previous research on anaerobic treatment of BW, although similar treatment conditions were applied. Therefore, this study shows specifically the influence of bicarbonate and calcium fluctuations in BW on the phosphorus accumulation in the UASB reactor, which directly affects CaP granulation. Without calcium addition, 5% of the total phosphorus (P) fed was found as CaP granules in the reactor (61 mgP g−1dried matter), after 260 days of operation. Simultaneously, 65% of the COD in BW was efficiently converted into methane at 25 °C. Variations of bicarbonate and calcium concentrations in raw BW showed a significant influence on phosphorus accumulation in the UASB reactor. Geochemical modelling showed that the increase of soluble calcium from 39 to 54 mg L−1 in BW triggers supersaturation for calcium phosphate precursors (Cax(PO4)y). Concurrently, bicarbonate decreased from 2.7 to 1.2 g L−1, increasing further the ionic activity of calcium. Formation and accumulation of seed particles possibly enhanced CaP granulation. Preliminary results showed that addition of calcium (Ca2+/PO43− molar ratio of 3) increased the accumulation of total P in the UASB reactor to more than 85%. This further increases the granulation rate and consequently, the process feasibility.
Choice of technological change for China's low-carbon development: Evidence from three urban agglomerations J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-05 Pinrong Jia, Ke Li, Shuai Shao
China's three urban agglomerations, namely, “Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei”, “Yangtze River Delta”, and “Pearl River Delta”, are the most developed regions in China. These agglomerations are also expected to play a leading role in China's low-carbon development. Energy-saving and carbon-free technological changes play key roles in the low-carbon development transformation of these regions. This study investigates the elasticities of the output and substitution of factors, and the biased technological change in the three urban agglomerations based on the stochastic frontier analysis with a translog production function. The results indicate that the economic growth of the three urban agglomerations is mainly driven by the increase in capital stock caused by investment, energy shortage, and environmental degradation. The relationship between electricity input and carbon dioxide emissions is affected by power generation and economic cycles and transforms from complementarity to substitution. However, this relationship varies among regions. Technological change is conducive to electricity saving, but it does not present an emission-reduction effect.
Visible light photocatalytic disintegration of waste activated sludge for enhancing biogas production J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-02 Muzammil Anjum, Hasan A. Al-Talhi, Saleh A. Mohamed, Rajeev Kumar, M.A. Barakat
Biogas production using waste activated sludge (WAS) is one of the most demanding technologies for sludge treatment and generating energy in sustainable manner. The present study deals with the photocatalytic pretreatment of WAS using ZnO-ZnS@polyaniline (ZnO-ZnS@PANI) nanocomposite as means for increasing its degradability for improved biogas production by anaerobic digestion (AD). Photocatalysis accelerated the hydrolysis of WAS and increased the sCOD by 6.7 folds after 6 h and transform tCOD into bioavailable sCOD. After the AD of WAS, a removal of organic matter (60.6%) and tCOD (69.3%) was achieved in photocatalytic pretreated sludge. The biogas production was 1.6 folds higher in photocatalytic sludge with accumulative biogas up to 1645.1 ml L−1vs after 45 days compared with the raw sludge (1022.4 ml L−1VS). Moreover, the photocatalysis decrease the onset of methanogenesis from 25 to 12 days while achieve the maximum conversion rate of reducing sugars into organic acids at that time. These results suggested that photocatalysis is an efficient pretreatment method and ZnO-ZnS@PANI can degrade sludge efficiently for enhance biogas production in anaerobic digestion process.
Optimization of the monitoring of landfill gas and leachate in closed methanogenic landfills J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-01 Dejan Jovanov, Bogdana Vujić, Goran Vujić
Monitoring of the gas and leachate parameters in a closed landfill is a long-term activity defined by national legislative worldwide. Serbian Waste Disposal Law defines the monitoring of a landfill at least 30 years after its closing, but the definition of the monitoring extent (number and type of parameters) is incomplete. In order to define and clear all the uncertainties, this research focuses on process of monitoring optimization, using the closed landfill in Zrenjanin, Serbia, as the experimental model. The aim of optimization was to find representative parameters which would define the physical, chemical and biological processes in the closed methanogenic landfill and to make this process less expensive. Research included development of the five monitoring models with different number of gas and leachate parameters and each model has been processed in open source software GeoGebra which is often used for solving optimization problems. The results of optimization process identified the most favorable monitoring model which fulfills all the defined criteria not only from the point of view of mathematical analyses, but also from the point of view of environment protection. The final outcome of this research - the minimal required parameters which should be included in the landfill monitoring are precisely defined.
Manure from biochar, bentonite and zeolite feed supplemented poultry: Moisture retention and granulation properties J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-09-01 Tanka P. Prasai, Kerry B. Walsh, David J. Midmore, Ben E.H. Jones, Surya P. Bhattarai
Feeding treatments were imposed in two feeding trials involving Cobb broiler and Bond Brown layer birds. Three feed additives (biochar, bentonite and zeolite) were supplied at four rates (0, 1, 2 and 4% w/w) in feed, as previously considered in the context of animal production, was considered in the context of Excreta chemical and water retention properties and granulation characteristics of decomposed excreta (manure) were characterised. At field capacity (– 0.01 MPa), manure produced from control and 4% bentonite diets contained significantly (p = 0.001) more water (at 1.93 and 2.44% v/v water, respectively) than zeolite and biochar treatments. Manure mesoporosity was significantly (p = 0.015) higher in 2 and 4% bentonite treatments than other feed additives. Fresh excreta from layer birds on the control diet contained 6% w/dw N and 35% C, which was decreased to 2.6% N and 28% C after decomposition, with C:N ratio changing from 5.9 to 12.1. Ammonia loss was higher from biochar and zeolite manures than control or bentonite, associated with higher pH in the biochar and zeolite manures. More N was unaccounted from bentonite manure than other treatments, presumably lost as N2O or N2, a result linked to its higher moisture content and its enhanced rate of denitrification. The highest proportion of granules in the size class desired for fertilizer spreading was achieved using decomposed manure from the 1 and 2% w/w biochar treatments of the broiler trial, and 1 and 2% zeolite and 4% biochar treatments of the layer trial. Thus the feed amendments improved poultry manure in specific ways.
Evaluation of the rotary drum reactor process as pretreatment technology of municipal solid waste for thermophilic anaerobic digestion and biogas production J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-31 Petros Gikas, Baoning Zhu, Nicolas Ion Batistatos, Ruihong Zhang
Municipal solid waste (MSW) contains a large fraction of biodegradable organic materials. When disposed in landfills, these materials can cause adverse environmental impact due to gaseous emissions and leachate generation. This study was performed with an aim of effectively separating the biodegradable materials from a Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT) facility and treating them in well-controlled anaerobic digesters for biogas production. The rotary drum reactor (RDR) process (a sub-process of the MBT facilities studied in the present work) was evaluated as an MSW pretreatment technology for separating and preparing the biodegradable materials in MSW to be used as feedstock for anaerobic digestion. The RDR processes used in six commercial MSW treatment plants located in the USA were surveyed and sampled. The samples of the biodegradable materials produced by the RDR process were analyzed for chemical and physical characteristics as well as anaerobically digested in the laboratory using batch reactors under thermophilic conditions. The moisture content, TS, VS and C/N of the samples varied between 64.7 and 44.4%, 55.6 to 35.3%, 27.0 to 41.3% and 24.5 to 42.7, respectively. The biogas yield was measured to be between 533.0 and 675.6 mL g−1VS after 20 days of digestion. Approximately 90% of the biogas was produced during the first 13 days. The average methane content of the biogas was between 58.0 and 59.9%. The results indicated that the biodegradable materials separated from MSW using the RDR processes could be used as an excellent feedstock for anaerobic digestion. The digester residues may be further processed for compost production or further energy recovery by using thermal conversion processes such as combustion or gasification.
Onsite defluoridation system for drinking water treatment using calcium carbonate J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-30 Elaine Y. Wong, Michael K. Stenstrom
Fluoride in drinking water has several effects on teeth and bones. At concentrations of 1–1.5 mg/L, fluoride can strengthen enamel, improving dental health, but at concentrations above 1.5 to 4 mg/L can cause dental fluorosis. At concentrations of 4–10 mg/L, skeletal fluorosis can occur. There are many areas of the world that have excessive fluoride in drinking water, such as China, India, Sri Lanka, and the Rift Valley countries in Africa. Treatment solutions are needed, especially in poor areas where drinking water treatment plants are not available. On-site or individual treatment alternatives can be attractive if constructed from common materials and if simple enough to be constructed and maintained by users. Advanced on-site methods, such as under sink reserve osmosis units, can remove fluoride but are too expensive for developing areas. This paper investigates calcium carbonate as a cost effective sorbent for an onsite defluoridation drinking water system. Batch and column experiments were performed to characterize F− removal properties. Fluoride sorption was described by a Freundlich isotherm model, and it was found that the equilibrium time was approximately 3 h. Calcium carbonate was found to have comparable F− removal abilities as the commercial ion exchange resins and possessed higher removal effectiveness compared to calcium containing eggshells and seashells. It was also found that the anion Cl- did not compete with F− at typical drinking water concentrations, having little impact on the effectiveness of the treatment system. A fluoride removal system is proposed that can be used at home and can be maintained by users. Through this work, we can be a step closer to bringing safe drinking water to those that do not have access to it.
Nutrients recovery from anaerobic digestate of agro-waste: Techno-economic assessment of full scale applications J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-26 D. Bolzonella, F. Fatone, M. Gottardo, N. Frison
The sustainable production of fertilizers, especially those based on phosphorus, will be one of the challenges of this century. Organic wastes produced by the agriculture, urban and industrial sectors are rich in nutrients which can be conveniently recovered and used as fertilizers. In this study five full scale systems for the recovery of nutrients from anaerobic digestate produced in farm-scale plants were studied. Monitored technologies were: drying with acidic recovery, stripping with acidic recovery and membrane separation. Results showed good performances in terms of nutrients recovery with average yields always over 50% for both nitrogen and phosphorus. The techno-economic assessment showed how the specificity of the monitored systems played a major role: in particular, membranes were able to produce a stream of virtually pure water (up to 50% of the treated digestate) reducing the digestate volume, while drying, because of the limitation on recoverable heat, could treat only a limited portion (lower than 50%) of produced digestate while stripping suffered some problems because of the presence of suspended solids in the liquid fraction treated. Specific capital and operational costs for the three systems were comparable ranging between 5.40 and 6.97 € per m3 of digestate treated and followed the order stripping > drying > membranes. Costs determined in this study were similar to those observed in other European experiences reported in literature.
Quantification of annual sediment deposits for sustainable sand management in Aghanashini river estuary J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-12 T.V. Ramachandra, S. Vinay, M.D. Subash Chandran
Sedimentation involving the process of silt transport also carries nutrients from upstream to downstream of a river/stream. Sand being one of the important fraction of these sediments is extracted in order to cater infrastructural/housing needs in the region. This communication is based on field research in the Aghanshini river basin, west coast of India. Silt yield in the river basin and the sedimentation rate assessed using empirical techniques supplemented with field quantifications using soundings (SONAR), show the sediment yield of 1105–1367 kilo cum per year and deposition of sediment of 61 (2016) to 71 (2015) cm. Quantifications of extractions at five locations, reveal of over exploitation of sand to an extent of 30% with damages to the breeding ground of fishes, reduced productivity of bivalves, etc., which has affected dependent people's livelihood. This study provides vital insights towards sustainable sand harvesting through stringent management practices.
Modelling landscape dynamics with LST in protected areas of Western Ghats, Karnataka J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-09 T.V. Ramachandra, Setturu Bharath, Nimish Gupta
Forest ecosystems sustain biota on the earth as they are habitat to diverse biotic species, arrests soil erosion, play a crucial role in water cycle, sequester carbon, and helps in mitigating the impacts of global warming. Large scale land use land cover (LULC) change leading to deforestation is one of the drivers of global climate changes and alteration of biogeochemical cycles with significant consequences in ecosystem services and biodiversity. This has necessitated the investigation of LULC by mapping, monitoring and modelling spatio-temporal patterns and evaluating these in the context of human-environment interactions. The current work investigates LULC changes with temperature dynamics of select protected areas in Western Ghats. The land use analyses reveal changes in the forest cover across Kudremukh National Park (KNP), Rajiv Gandhi Tiger Reserve (RTR), Bandipur Tiger Reserve (BTR). KNP region has lost evergreen forest cover during 1973–2016 from 33.46 to 27.22%, while BTR lost deciduous cover from 61.69 to 47.3% due to mining, horticulture plantations, human habitations, etc. The LST increase has impacted regeneration of species with the induced water stress, etc. CA-Markov modelling was used for forecasting the likely land uses in 2026 and validation was done through Kappa indices. Results highlight decline of evergreen cover in KNP (9%) and deciduous cover in RTR (2%) followed by BTR (3%) with further expansion of plantations, which will impact biodiversity, hydrology and ecology. Insights of LULC dynamics help natural resource managers in evolving appropriate strategies to ensure conservation of threatened biota in Western Ghats.
Comparison of the design criteria of 141 onsite wastewater treatment systems available on the French market J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-02 V. Dubois, C. Boutin
New EC standards published in 2009 led to a surge in onsite wastewater treatment systems reaching the European market. Here we summarize their technical aspects and compare them to known values used in centralized wastewater treatment. The paper deals with two types of processes: attached-growth systems (AGS) on fine media and suspended-growth systems (SGS). Covering 141 technical approvals and 36 manufacturers, we compare onsite design criteria against the centralized wastewater design criteria for each process. The systems use a wide range of materials for bacterial growth, from soil, sand or gravel to zeolite, coconut shavings or rockwool cubes, with a huge range of variation in useful surface, from 0.26 m2/PE for one rockwool cube filter to 5 m2/PE for a (traditional system) vertical sand filter. Some rockwool can handle applied daily surface load of 160 g BOD5/m2. SGS design parameters range from 0.025 to 0.34 kg BOD5 per kg MLVSS/d with hydraulic retention times of 0.28–3.7 d. For clarifier design, water velocity ranges from 0.15 to 1.47 m/h. In the sludge line, sludge storage volume ranges from 0.125 down to just 0.56 m3/PE.
Fate of triclosan in laboratory-scale activated sludge reactors - Effect of culture acclimation J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-08-02 Aybala Koc Orhon, Kemal Berk Orhon, Ulku Yetis, Filiz B. Dilek
Triclosan (TCS); a widely used antimicrobial biocide, exists in several pharmaceutical and personal care products. Due to its wide usage, TCS is detected in wastewater at varying concentrations. Biological treatability of TCS and its effect on chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal efficiency were investigated running laboratory-scale pulse-fed sequencing batch reactors with acclimated and non-acclimated cultures. The culture was acclimatized to TCS by gradually increasing its concentration in the synthetic feed wastewater from 100 ng/L to 100 mg/L. There were no effects of TCS on COD removal efficiency up to the TCS concentration of 500 ng/L for both acclimatized and non-acclimatized cases. However, starting from a concentration of 1 mg/L, TCS affected the COD removal efficiency adversely. This effect was more pronounced with non-acclimatized culture. The decrease in the COD removal efficiency reached to 47% and 42% at the TCS concentration of 100 mg/L, under acclimation and non-acclimation conditions respectively. Adsorption of TCS into biomass was evidenced at higher TCS concentrations especially with non-acclimated cultures. 2,4-dichlorophenol and 2,4-dichloroanisole were identified as biodegradation by-products. The occurrence and distribution of these metabolites in the effluent and sludge matrices were found to be highly variable depending, especially, on the culture acclimation conditions.
High spatial- and temporal-resolution anthropogenic heat discharge estimation in Los Angeles County, California J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-07-22 Yuanfan Zheng, Qihao Weng
Anthropogenic heat flux (Qf), which originates through energy consumption from buildings, industrial plants, vehicle exhausts, and human metabolism releases, is an important component in the urban Surface Energy Balance (SEB) system, and is key to understanding of many urban environmental issues. The present study provided a hybrid Qf modeling approach, which combined the inventory and GIS approach to create a 365-day hourly Qf profile at 120 m spatial resolution in Los Angeles County, California, USA. Qf was estimated by separate calculation of heat release from buildings, traffics, and human metabolism, respectively. The results indicated that Qf showed different magnitudes and diurnal patterns between workdays (dual-peak shape) and weekends/holidays, and also varied with seasons, and land use types. Qf yielded the highest values in the summer workdays, with its maximum value of 7.76 w/m2. Qf in hot summer workdays was obviously higher than that in the average summer workdays, which caused by higher demands for space cooling in buildings, and can reach 8.14 w/m2 at maximum. Building energy consumption was identified as the dominant contributor to the Qf in Downtown Los Angeles, which was found to have the largest mean Qf throughout the year among all neighborhoods. It can be concluded that Qf in the downtown was more significant in workdays than that in non-workdays, and its maximum value can reach 100 w/m2. It is suggested that our approach may have wider applicability for Qf estimation in large areas compared with the existing studies, as all the data used were available to the public. A high spatial and temporal Qf profile, which can readily be incorporated into urban energy balance and Urban Heat Island (UHI) studies, provides valuable data and information for pertinent government agencies and researchers.
Sewer-mining: A water reuse option supporting circular economy, public service provision and entrepreneurship J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-07-17 C. Makropoulos, E. Rozos, I. Tsoukalas, A. Plevri, G. Karakatsanis, L. Karagiannidis, E. Makri, C. Lioumis, C. Noutsopoulos, D. Mamais, C. Rippis, E. Lytras
Water scarcity, either due to increased urbanisation or climatic variability, has motivated societies to reduce pressure on water resources mainly by reducing water demand. However, this practice alone is not sufficient to guarantee the quality of life that high quality water services underpin, especially within a context of increased urbanisation. As such, the idea of water reuse has been gaining momentum for some time and has recently found a more general context within the idea of the Circular Economy. This paper is set within the context of an ongoing discussion between centralized and decentralized water reuse techniques and the investigation of trade-offs between efficiency and economic viability of reuse at different scales. Specifically, we argue for an intermediate scale of a water reuse option termed ‘sewer-mining’, which could be considered a reuse scheme at the neighbourhood scale. We suggest that sewer mining (a) provides a feasible alternative reuse option when the geography of the wastewater treatment plant is problematic, (b) relies on mature treatment technologies and (c) presents an opportunity for Small Medium Enterprises (SME) to be involved in the water market, securing environmental, social and economic benefits. To support this argument, we report on a pilot sewer-mining application in Athens, Greece. The pilot, integrates two subsystems: a packaged treatment unit and an information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure. The paper reports on the pilot's overall performance and critically evaluates the potential of the sewer-mining idea to become a significant piece of the circular economy puzzle for water.
Life cycle assessment of the use of alternative fuels in cement kilns: A case study J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-07-14 Martha Georgiopoulou, Gerasimos Lyberatos
The benefits of using alternative fuels (AFs) in the cement industry include reduction of the use of non-renewable fossil fuels and lower emissions of greenhouse gases, since fossil fuels are replaced with materials that would otherwise be degraded or incinerated with corresponding emissions and final residues. Furthermore, the use of alternative fuels maximizes the recovery of energy. Seven different scenaria were developed for the production of 1 ton of clinker in a rotary cement kiln. Each of these scenaria includes the use of alternative fuels such as RDF (Refuse derived fuel), TDF (Tire derived fuel) and BS (Biological sludge) or a mixture of them, in partial replacement of conventional fuels such as coal and pet coke. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the environmental impacts of the use of alternative fuels in relation to conventional fuels in the kiln operation. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology is used to quantify the potential environmental impacts in each scenario. The interpretation of the results provides the conclusion that the most environmentally friendly prospect is the scenario based on RDF while the less preferable scenario is the scenario based on BS.
Control of dissolved CH4 in a municipal UASB reactor effluent by means of a desorption – Biofiltration arrangement J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-07-09 A. Huete, D. de los Cobos-Vasconcelos, T. Gómez-Borraz, J.M. Morgan-Sagastume, A. Noyola
The direct anaerobic treatment of municipal wastewater represents an adapted technology to the conditions of developing countries. In order to get an increased acceptance of this technology, a proper control of dissolved methane in the anaerobic effluents should be considered, as methane is a potent greenhouse gas. In this study, a pilot-scale system was operated for 168 days to recover dissolved methane from an effluent of an upflow anaerobic sludge blanket reactor and then oxidize it in a compost biofilter. The system operated at a constant air (0.9 m3/h ±0.09) and two air-to anaerobic effluent ratio (1:1 and 1:2). In both conditions (CH4 concentration of 2.7 ± 0.87 and 4.3% ± 1.14, respectively) the desorption column recovered 99% of the dissolved CH4 and approximately 30% ± 8.5 of H2S, whose desorption was limited due to the high pH (>8) of the effluent. The biofilter removed 70% ± 8 of the average CH4 load (60 gCH4/m3h ± 13) and 100% of the H2S load at an empty bed retention time of 23 min. The average temperature inside the biofilter was 42 ± 9 °C due to the CH4 oxidation reaction, indicating that temperature and moisture control is particularly important for CH4 removal in compost biofilters. The system may achieve a 54% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from dissolved CH4 in this particular case.
Green to gray: Silicon Valley of India J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-07-06 H.A. Bharath, S. Vinay, M.C. Chandan, B.A. Gouri, T.V. Ramachandra
Rapid growth, population concentration and the expansion of urban areas towards peri-urban regions have led to changes in urban structure and composition, and consequently changes in urban ecology. The purpose of this study is to estimate trees in the urban environment through quantification of vegetation cover using multi resolution spatial data supplemented with tree data acquired from field using pre-calibrated GPS. Optimal resolution for extracting trees was attained through fusion of multi resolution (spectral and spatial) data. Results highlight region with spatial extent of 741 sq. km with 9.5 million human population has about 1.48 million trees. Further, urban growth increment is expected to cover 95% of the landscape with paved surfaces by 2020 decreasing vegetation cover while severely affecting the local ecology and environment in addition to human survival.
Thermodynamic modelling of an onsite methanation reactor for upgrading producer gas from commercial small scale biomass gasifiers J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-26 S. Vakalis, D. Malamis, K. Moustakas
Small scale biomass gasifiers have the advantage of having higher electrical efficiency in comparison to other conventional small scale energy systems. Nonetheless, a major drawback of small scale biomass gasifiers is the relatively poor quality of the producer gas. In addition, several EU Member States are seeking ways to store the excess energy that is produced from renewables like wind power and hydropower. A recent development is the storage of energy by electrolysis of water and the production of hydrogen in a process that is commonly known as “power-to-gas”. The present manuscript proposes an onsite secondary reactor for upgrading producer gas by mixing it with hydrogen in order to initiate methanation reactions. A thermodynamic model has been developed for assessing the potential of the proposed methanation process. The model utilized input parameters from a representative small scale biomass gasifier and molar ratios of hydrogen from 1:0 to 1:4.1. The Villar-Cruise-Smith algorithm was used for minimizing the Gibbs free energy. The model returned the molar fractions of the permanent gases, the heating values and the Wobbe Index. For mixtures of hydrogen and producer gas on a 1:0.9 ratio the increase of the heating value is maximized with an increase of 78%. For ratios higher than 1:3, the Wobbe index increases significantly and surpasses the value of 30 MJ/Nm3.
Investigations on phosphorus recovery from aqueous solutions by biochars derived from magnesium-pretreated cypress sawdust J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-23 Khouloud Haddad, Salah Jellali, Mejdi Jeguirim, Aida Ben Hassen Trabelsi, Lionel Limousy
The ability of biochars, derived from the pyrolysis at 400 °C; 500 °C and 600 °C of pretreated cypress sawdust with 20 wt% magnesium chloride (MgCl2) solutions, in recovering phosphorus from aqueous solutions was investigated under various experimental conditions in batch mode. The experimental results indicated that cypress sawdust pretreatment with MgCl2 induced important modifications of the physical and chemical biochars' properties favoring phosphorus recovery from the used synthetic solutions. Moreover, phosphorus recovery efficiency increased with the increase of the used pyrolysis temperature. Indeed, for an aqueous pH of 5.2 and a phosphorus concentration of 75 mg L−1, the recovered amounts increased from 19.2 mg g−1 to 33.8 mg g−1 when the used pyrolysis temperature was raised from 400 °C to 600 °C. For all the tested biochars, the phosphorus recovery kinetics data were well fitted by the pseudo-second-order model, and the equilibrium state was obtained after 180 min of contact time. Furthermore, the phosphorus recovery data at equilibrium were well described by the Langmuir model with a maximal recovery capacity of 66.7 mg g−1 for the magnesium pretreated biochar at 600 °C. Phosphorus recovery by the used biochars occurred probably through adsorption onto biochars' active sites as well as precipitation with magnesium ions as magnesium phosphates components. All these results suggested that biochars derived from MgCl2 pretreated cypress sawdust could be considered as promising materials for phosphorus recovery from wastewaters for a possible further subsequent use in agriculture as amendments.
Optimization of food waste compost with the use of biochar J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-19 M. Waqas, A.S. Nizami, A.S. Aburiazaiza, M.A. Barakat, I.M.I. Ismail, M.I. Rashid
This paper aims to examine the influence of biochar produced from lawn waste in accelerating the degradation and mineralization rates of food waste compost. Biochar produced at two different temperatures (350 and 450 °C) was applied at the rates 10 and 15% (w/w) of the total waste to an in-vessel compost bioreactor for evaluating its effects on food waste compost. The quality of compost was assessed against stabilization indices such as moisture contents (MC), electrical conductivity (EC), organic matters (OM) degradation, change in total carbon (TC) and mineral nitrogen contents such as ammonium (NH4+) and nitrate (NO3−). The use of biochar significantly improved the composting process and physiochemical properties of the final compost. Results showed that in comparison to control trial, biochar amended compost mixtures rapidly achieved the thermophilic temperature, increased the OM degradation by 14.4–15.3%, concentration of NH4+ by 37.8–45.6% and NO3− by 50–62%. The most prominent effects in term of achieving rapid thermophilic temperature and a higher concentration of NH4+ and NO3− were observed at 15% (w/w) biochar. According to compost quality standard of United States (US), California, Germany, and Austria, the compost stability as a result of biochar addition was achieved in 50–60 days. Nonetheless, the biochar produced at 450 °C had similar effects as to biochar produced at 350 °C for most of the compost parameters. Therefore, it is recommended to produce biochar at 350 °C to reduce the energy requirements for resource recovery of biomass and should be added at a concentration of 15% (w/w) to the compost bioreactor for achieving a stable compost.
The effect of feed composition on anaerobic co-digestion of animal-processing by-products J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-17 D. Hidalgo, J.M. Martín-Marroquín, F. Corona
Four streams and their mixtures have been considered for anaerobic co-digestion, all of them generated during pig carcasses processing or in related industrial activities: meat flour (MF), process water (PW), pig manure (PM) and glycerin (GL). Biochemical methane potential assays were conducted at 37 °C to evaluate the effects of the substrate mix ratio on methane generation and process behavior. The results show that the co-digestion of these products favors the anaerobic fermentation process when limiting the amount of meat flour in the mixture to co-digest, which should not exceed 10%. The ratio of other tested substrates is less critical, because different mixtures reach similar values of methane generation. The presence in the mixture of process water contributes to a quick start of the digester, something very interesting when operating an industrial reactor. The analysis of the fraction digested reveals that the four analyzed streams can be, a priori, suitable for agronomic valorization once digested.
Pilot-scale evaluation of semi-passive treatment technologies for the treatment of septage under temperate climate conditions J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-07 Christine Gan, Pascale Champagne, Geof Hall
Population growth in rural Canada has resulted in an increase in municipal septage generation, which could overload existing treatment facilities that rely on biological treatment approaches. To address concerns associated with potential shock loading of these systems, three semi-passive wastewater treatment technologies were compared at the pilot-scale to identify a suitable approach to augment the capacity of an existing wastewater stabilization pond facility in rural Ontario. Two of these technologies, the BioDome and BioCord systems, were commercially available systems that make use of biofilm technology to improve treatment performance and enhance the robustness to temperature and hydraulic loading fluctuations. The third approach involved the use of the natural filtration capacity of zebra mussels to improve effluent quality. The three technologies were assessed against a control for reductions in regulated wastewater parameters with an emphasis on nutrient (ammonia/ammonium, orthophosphate) reductions, air cycling, energy consumption, and performance following exposure to anoxic conditions. The BioCord system was the only technology that was found to significantly outperform the control, exhibiting reductions of 69%, 47%, 77% and 81% for NH3/NH4+, TN, COD and TSS, respectively. The BioCord system also had the lowest maintenance and energy requirements, likely due to its design, which provided the biofilm with optimal oxygen and substrate contact. Consequently, the BioCord system could develop a more stable, heterogeneous microbial population and maintain high levels of activity in its biofilm, even during periods of extended anaerobic conditions. This also suggested that the BioCord system would require less aeration, and hence a lower energy expenditure, than the other systems. Furthermore, the BioCord system showed the fastest rates of recovery, reaching significant levels of parameter reductions within one week of system re-initiation.
Performance and design considerations for an anaerobic moving bed biofilm reactor treating brewery wastewater: Impact of surface area loading rate and temperature J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-05 A. di Biase, T.R. Devlin, M.S. Kowalski, J.A. Oleszkiewicz
Three 4 L anaerobic moving bed biofilm reactors (AMBBR) treated brewery wastewater with AC920 media providing 680 m2 protected surface area per m3 of media. Different hydraulic retention times (HRT; 24, 18, 12, 10, 8 and 6 h) at 40% media fill and 35 °C, as well as different temperatures (15, 25 and 35 °C) at 50% media fill and 18 h HRT were examined. Best performance at 35 °C and 40% media fill was observed when HRT was 18 h, which corresponded with 92% removal of soluble COD (sCOD). Organic loading rates (OLR) above 24 kg-COD m−3d−1 decreased performance below 80% sCOD removal at 35 °C and 40% media fill. The reason was confirmed to be that surface area loading rates (SALR) above 50 g-sCOD m−2d−1 caused excessive biofilm thickness that filled up internal channels of the media, leading to mass transfer limitations. Temperature had a very significant impact on process performance with 50% media fill and 18 h HRT. Biomass concentrations were significantly higher at lower temperatures. At 15 °C the mass of volatile solids (VS) was more than three times higher than at 35 °C for the same OLR. Biofilms acclimated to 25 °C and 15 °C achieved removal of 80% sCOD at SALR of 10 g-sCOD m−2d−1 and 1.0 g-sCOD m−2d−1, respectively. Even though biomass concentrations were higher at lower temperature, biofilm acclimated to 25 °C and 15 °C performed significantly slower than that acclimated to 35 °C.
Greywater characterization and loadings – Physicochemical treatment to promote onsite reuse J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-06-04 C. Noutsopoulos, A. Andreadakis, N. Kouris, D. Charchousi, P. Mendrinou, A. Galani, I. Mantziaras, E. Koumaki
Greywater is the wastewater produced in bathtubs, showers, hand basins, kitchen sinks, dishwashers and laundry machines. Segregation of greywater and blackwater and on site greywater treatment in order to promote its reuse for toilet flushing and/or garden irrigation is an interesting option especially in water deficient areas. The objective of this study was to characterize the different greywater sources in Greek households and to evaluate the performance of alternative physicochemical treatment systems to treat several types of greywater. Based on the results average daily greywater production was equal to 98 L per person per day and accounts for approximately 70–75% of the total household wastewater production (135 L per person per day). Among the different sources, laundry and kitchen sink are the main contributors to the total greywater load of organic carbon, suspended solids and surfactants, whereas dishwasher and bathroom greywater are the main sources of phosphorus and endocrine disrupting chemicals respectively. Depending on sources, greywater accounts for as low as 15% of the total wastewater load of organic carbon (in the case of light greywater sources), to as high as 74% of the total load organic load (in the case of the heavy greywater sources). On the other hand, the nutrients load of greywater is limited. The application of a physical treatment system consisting of coagulation, sedimentation, sand filtration, granular activated carbon filtration and disinfection can provide for a final effluent with high quality characteristics for onsite reuse, especially when treating light greywater.
Transformation of oil palm fronds into pentose sugars using copper (II) sulfate pentahydrate with the assistance of chemical additive J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-22 Yu-Loong Loow, Ta Yeong Wu
Among the chemical pretreatments available for pretreating biomass, the inorganic salt is considered to be a relatively new but simple reagent that offers comparable pentose (C5) sugar recoveries as the conventional dilute acid hydrolysis. This study investigated the effects of different concentrations (1.5–6.0% (v/v)) of H2O2 or Na2S2O8 in facilitating CuSO4·5H2O pretreatment for improving pentose sugar recovery from oil palm fronds. The best result was observed when 0.2 mol/L of CuSO4·5H2O was integrated with 4.5% (v/v) of Na2S2O8 to recover 8.2 and 0.9 g/L of monomeric xylose and arabinose, respectively in the liquid fraction. On the other hand, an addition of 1.5% (v/v) of H2O2 yielded approximately 74% lesser total pentose sugars as compared to using 4.5% (v/v) Na2S2O8. By using CuSO4·5H2O alone (control), only 0.8 and 1.0 g/L xylose and arabinose, respectively could be achieved. The results mirrored the importance of using chemical additives together with the inorganic salt pretreatment of oil palm fronds. Thus, an addition of 4.5% (v/v) of Na2S2O8 during CuSO4·5H2O pretreatment of oil palm fronds at 120 °C and 30 min was able to attain a total pentose sugar yield up to ∼40%.
Enhancement of waste activated sludge (WAS) anaerobic digestion by means of pre- and intermediate treatments. Technical and economic analysis at a full-scale WWTP J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-16 Giuseppe Campo, Alberto Cerutti, Mariachiara Zanetti, Gerardo Scibilia, Eugenio Lorenzi, Barbara Ruffino
Anaerobic digestion (AD) is the most commonly applied end-treatment for the excess of waste activated sludge (WAS) generated in biological wastewater treatment processes. The efficacy of different typologies of pre-treatments in liberating intra-cellular organic substances and make them more usable for AD was demonstrated in several studies. However, the production of new extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs) that occur during an AD process, due to microbial metabolism, self-protective reactions and cell lysis, partially neutralizes the benefit of pre-treatments. The efficacy of post- and inter-stage treatments is currently under consideration to overcome the problems due to this unavoidable byproduct. This work compares three scenarios in which low-temperature (<100 °C) thermal and hybrid (thermal+alkali) lysis treatments were applied to one sample of WAS and two samples of digestate with hydraulic retention times (HRTs) of 7 and 15 days. Batch mesophilic digestibility tests demonstrated that intermediate treatments were effective in making the residual organic substance of a 7-day digestate usable for a second-stage AD process. In fact, under this scenario, the methane generated in a two-stage AD process, with an in-between intermediate treatment, was 23% and 16% higher than that generated in the scenario that considers traditional pre-treatments carried out with 4% NaOH at 70 and 90 °C respectively. Conversely, in no cases (70 or 90 °C) the combination of a 15-day AD process, followed by an intermediate treatment and a second-stage AD process, made possible to obtain specific methane productions (SMPs) higher than those obtained with pre-treatments. The results of the digestibility tests were used for a tecno-economic assessment of pre- and intermediate lysis treatments in a full scale wastewater treatment plant (WWTP, 2,000,000 p.e.). It was demonstrated that the introduction of thermal or hybrid pre-treatments could increase the revenues from the electricity sale by between 13% and 25%, in comparison with the present scenario (no lysis treatments). Conversely, intermediate treatments on a 7-day digestate could provide a gain of 26% or 32%, depending on the process temperature (70 or 90 °C).
Comparative life cycle assessment of alternative strategies for energy recovery from used cooking oil J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-15 Lidia Lombardi, Barbara Mendecka, Ennio Carnevale
The separate collection of Used Cooking Oil (UCO) is gaining popularity through several countries in Europe. An appropriate management of UCO waste stream leads to substantial benefits. In this study, we analyse two different possibilities of UCO energy reuse: the direct feed to a reciprocating internal combustion engine (ICE) for cogeneration purpose, and the processing to generate biodiesel. Concerning biodiesel production, we analyse four among conventional and innovative technologies, characterised by different type and amount of used chemicals, heat and electricity consumptions and yields. We perform a systematic evaluation of environmental benefits and drawbacks by applying life cycle assessment (LCA) analysis to compare the alternatives. For the impact assessment, two methods are selected: the Global Warming Potential (GWP) and Cumulative Exergy Consumption (CExC). Results related only to the processing phases (i.e. not including yet the avoided effects) show that the recovery of UCO in cogeneration plant has in general lower values in terms of environmental impacts than its employment in biodiesel production. When products and co-products substitution are included, the savings obtained by the substitution of conventional diesel production, in the biodiesel cases, are significantly higher than the avoided effects for electricity and heat in the cogeneration case. In particular, by using the UCO in the biodiesel production processes, the savings vary from 41.6 to 54.6 GJex per tUCO, and from 2270 to 2860 kg CO2eq per tUCO for CExC and GWP, respectively. A particular focus is put on sensitivity and uncertainty analyses. Overall, high uncertainty of final results for process impacts is observed, especially for the supercritical methanol process. Low uncertainty values are evaluated for the avoided effects. Including the uncertain character of the impacts, cogeneration scenario and NaOH catalysed process of biodiesel production result to be the most suitable solutions from the process impacts and avoided effects perspective.
Evaluation of the influence of mechanical activation on physical and chemical properties of municipal solid waste incineration sludge J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-13 V. Caprai, M.V.A. Florea, H.J.H. Brouwers
Despite numerous studies concerning the application of by-products in the construction field, municipal solid waste incineration (MSWI) residues are not widely used as secondary building materials. In some European countries, washing treatment to the full bottom ash (BA) fraction (0–32 mm) is applied, isolating more contaminated particles, smaller than 0.063 mm. Therefore, a MWSI sludge is produced, having a high moisture content, and thus a limited presence of soluble species. In order to enhance its performance as building material, here, dry mechanical activation is applied on MSWI sludge. Thereafter, a reactivity comparison between reference BA and untreated and treated MSWI sludge is provided, evaluating their behaviour in the presence of cement and their pozzolanic activity. Moreover, the mechanical performances, as 25% substitution of Portland cement (PC) are assessed, based on the EN 450. Mechanical activation enhances MSWI sludge physically due to the improved particle morphology and packing. Chemically, the hydration degree of PC is enhanced by the MSWI sludge by ≈25%. The milling treatment proved to be beneficial to the residues performances in the presence of PC, providing 32% higher strength than untreated sample. Environmentally, the compliance with the unshaped material legislation is successfully verified, according to the Soil Quality Decree.
Effect of simulated mechanical recycling processes on the structure and properties of poly(lactic acid) J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-12 F.R. Beltrán, V. Lorenzo, J. Acosta, M.U. de la Orden, J. Martínez Urreaga
The aim of this work is to study the effects of different simulated mechanical recycling processes on the structure and properties of PLA. A commercial grade of PLA was melt compounded and compression molded, then subjected to two different recycling processes. The first recycling process consisted of an accelerated ageing and a second melt processing step, while the other recycling process included an accelerated ageing, a demanding washing process and a second melt processing step. The intrinsic viscosity measurements indicate that both recycling processes produce a degradation in PLA, which is more pronounced in the sample subjected to the washing process. DSC results suggest an increase in the mobility of the polymer chains in the recycled materials; however the degree of crystallinity of PLA seems unchanged. The optical, mechanical and gas barrier properties of PLA do not seem to be largely affected by the degradation suffered during the different recycling processes. These results suggest that, despite the degradation of PLA, the impact of the different simulated mechanical recycling processes on the final properties is limited. Thus, the potential use of recycled PLA in packaging applications is not jeopardized.
Characterization of selected municipal solid waste components to estimate their biodegradability J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-12 R. Bayard, H. Benbelkacem, R. Gourdon, P. Buffière
Biological treatments of Residual Municipal Solid Waste (RMSW) allow to divert biodegradable materials from landfilling and recover valuable alternative resources. The biodegradability of the waste components needs however to be assessed in order to design the bioprocesses properly. The present study investigated complementary approaches to aerobic and anaerobic biotests for a more rapid evaluation. A representative sample of residual MSW was collected from a Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT) plant and sorted out into 13 fractions according to the French standard procedure MODECOM™. The different fractions were analyzed for organic matter content, leaching behavior, contents in biochemical constituents (determined by Van Soest's acid detergent fiber method), Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) and Bio-Methane Potential (BMP). Experimental data were statistically treated by Principal Components Analysis (PCA). Cumulative oxygen consumption from BOD tests and cumulative methane production from BMP tests were found to be positively correlated in all waste fractions. No correlation was observed between the results from BOD or BMP bioassays and the contents in cellulose-like, hemicelluloses-like or labile organic compounds. No correlation was observed either with the results from leaching tests (Soluble COD). The contents in lignin-like compounds, evaluated as the non-extracted RES fraction in Van Soest's method, was found however to impact negatively the biodegradability assessed by BOD or BMP tests. Since cellulose, hemicelluloses and lignin are the polymers responsible for the structuration of lignocellulosic complexes, it was concluded that the structural organization of the organic matter in the different waste fractions was more determinant on biodegradability than the respective contents in individual biopolymers.
Obtaining of granular fertilizers based on ashes from combustion of waste residues and ground bones using phosphorous solubilization by bacteria Bacillus megaterium J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-11 M. Rolewicz, P. Rusek, K. Borowik
The article presents research results on obtaining phosphorus granulated fertilizers on the basis of microbiologically activated sewage sludge ashes, ground bones and dried blood from meat industry. Granulation tests were carried out using a laboratory pan granulator as well as on an experimental pilot plant. The aim of the studies was to select the proper composition of the mixture of raw materials and binding agents to obtain granulated fertilizers from waste materials such as MSSA and MBM and bacteria lyophilisate. Obtained fertilizer samples were subjected to physical tests (granulation tests etc.) and quality assessment. The tests confirmed that it was possible to produce granulated phosphate fertilizers using the Bacillus megaterium for solubilization of phosphorus in a simple process.
The use of smart technologies in enabling construction components reuse: A viable method or a problem creating solution? J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-05 Eleni Iacovidou, Phil Purnell, Ming K. Lim
The exploitation of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) for tracking and archiving the properties of structural construction components could be a potentially innovative disruption for the construction sector. This is because RFID can stimulate the reuse of construction components and reduce their wastage, hence addressing sustainability issues in the construction sector. To test the plausibility of that idea, this study explores the potential pre-conditions for RFID to facilitate construction components reuse, and develops a guidance for promoting their redistribution back to the supply chain. It also looks at how integrating RFID with Building Information Modelling (BIM) can possibly be a valuable extension of its capabilities, providing the opportunity for tracked components to be incorporated into new structures in an informed, sound way. A preliminary assessment of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the RFID technology is presented in order to depict its current and future potential in promoting construction components' sustainable lifecycle management, while emphasis has been laid on capturing their technical, environmental, economic and social value. Findings suggest that the collection of the right amount of information at the design-construction-deconstruction-reuse-disposal stage is crucial for RFID to become a successful innovation in the construction sector. Although a number of limitations related to the technical operability and recycling of RFID tags seem to currently hinder its uptake for structural components' lifecycle management, future technological innovations could provide solutions that would enable it to become a mainstream practice. Taken together these proposals advocate that the use of RFID and its integration with BIM can create the right environment for the development of new business models focused on sustainable resource management. These models may then unlock multiple values that are otherwise dissipated in the system. If the rapid technological development of RFID capability can be allied to policy interventions that control and manage its uptake along the supply chain, the sustainable lifecycle management of construction components could be radically enhanced.
Isolation of organic compounds with high added values from agro-industrial solid wastes J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-05-02 Dimitris P. Zagklis, Christakis A. Paraskeva
Phenols are organic compounds with high antioxidant activity. Occurring mainly in plants, where they act as pigments or even as part of defense mechanisms against insects and herbivores. Given the positive impact on on human health, their isolation and purification from agricultural products is of particular interest for the production of nutritional, pharmaceutical and cosmetics supplements. In our study different materials rich in phenolic compounds were used, in order to separate the phenolic content and maximum condensation using physicochemical methods such as solvent extraction, filtration through membranes, adsorption/desorption on resins and vacuum distillation. The materials tested were solid wastes from winery, cocoa residuals, olive leaves, etc. The first step for the treatment was the extraction of phenolic content using water-ethanol solutions which was initially optimized. Then, sequential membrane filtration of the extracts by Ultrafiltration membranes, Nanofiltration and Reverse Osmosis was performed to separate the contained compounds, based on their molecular weight. To remove non-polar compounds, with similar molecular weights with phenols, methods of adsorption/desorption on specific resins were developed, in order final ethanolic solutions rich in phenolic compounds to be obtained. Finally, the ethanol was removed by vacuum evaporation at low temperatures. The purification of olive leaf phenols is illustrated in details in the present work. The final obtained concentrate, was a rich phenolic concentrate and contained 98 g/L phenols in gallic acid equivalents. This technique, after modification, can be applied to a variety of phenol-rich byproducts, allowing the operation of phenol separation plant adjustable to local agricultural activities.
Model for the separate collection of packaging waste in Portuguese low-performing recycling regions J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-04-30 V. Oliveira, V. Sousa, J.M. Vaz, C. Dias-Ferreira
Separate collection of packaging waste (glass; plastic/metals; paper/cardboard), is currently a widespread practice throughout Europe. It enables the recovery of good quality recyclable materials. However, separate collection performance are quite heterogeneous, with some countries reaching higher levels than others. In the present work, separate collection of packaging waste has been evaluated in a low-performance recycling region in Portugal in order to investigate which factors are most affecting the performance in bring-bank collection system. The variability of separate collection yields (kg per inhabitant per year) among 42 municipalities was scrutinized for the year 2015 against possible explanatory factors. A total of 14 possible explanatory factors were analysed, falling into two groups: socio-economic/demographic and waste collection service related. Regression models were built in an attempt to evaluate the individual effect of each factor on separate collection yields and predict changes on the collection yields by acting on those factors. The best model obtained is capable to explain 73% of the variation found in the separate collection yields. The model includes the following statistically significant indicators affecting the success of separate collection yields: i) inhabitants per bring-bank; ii) relative accessibility to bring-banks; iii) degree of urbanization; iv) number of school years attended; and v) area. The model presented in this work was developed specifically for the bring-bank system, has an explanatory power and quantifies the impact of each factor on separate collection yields. It can therefore be used as a support tool by local and regional waste management authorities in the definition of future strategies to increase collection of recyclables of good quality and to achieve national and regional targets.
Energetic and environmental assessment of thermochemical and biochemical ways for producing energy from agricultural solid residues: Coffee Cut-Stems case J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-04-24 Carlos A. García, Álvaro Peña, Ramiro Betancourt, Carlos A. Cardona
Forest residues are an important source of biomass. Among these, Coffee Cut-Stems (CCS) are an abundant wood waste in Colombia obtained from coffee crops renovation. However, only low quantities of these residues are used directly in combustion processes for heating and cooking in coffee farms where their energy efficiency is very low. In the present work, an energy and environmental assessment of two bioenergy production processes (ethanol fermentation and gasification) using CCS as raw material was performed. Biomass gasification seems to be the most promising thermochemical method for bioenergy production whereas, ethanol fermentation is a widely studied biochemical method to produce biofuels. Experimental runs of the CCS gasification were carried out and the synthesis gas composition was monitored. Prior to the fermentation process, a treatment of the CCS is required from which sugar content was determined and then, in the fermentation process, the ethanol yield was calculated. Both processes were simulated in order to obtain the mass and energy balance that are used to assess the energy efficiency and the potential environmental impact (PEI). Moderate high energy efficiency and low environmental impacts were obtained from the CCS gasification. In contrast, high environmental impacts in different categories and low energy efficiencies were calculated from the ethanolic fermentation. Biomass gasification seems to be the most promising technology for the use of Coffee Cut-Stems with high energy yields and low environmental issues.
Analysis of tar compounds and quantification of naphthalene from thermal treatment of household biowaste J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-04-22 S. Vakalis, F. Patuzzi, K. Moustakas, A. Sotiropoulos, D. Malamis, M. Baratieri
Household biowaste represent the organic fraction of municipal solid waste and are an underutilized resource. Although previous studies have performed pyrolysis of organic waste, the vast majority has been on specific presorted feedstock or conventional lignocellulosic streams. Therefore, there is a lack of pyrolysis applications on representative food waste as retrieved from households and this can be attributed primarily to their high water content and their degradability. But via the intermediate step of drying, long-term storage and thermal treatment have become possible. In the framework of this study, household biowaste were pyrolyzed for the production of carbonaceous materials with a main focus on the analysis of produced tar compounds. Tars can be corrosive or cause clogging and disrupt the operation of pyrolysis and gasification plants. Their analysis has faced several difficulties due to inconsistency in the methodologies that have been applied by various groups. The tar protocol has provided a solid framework for consistent analysis of tars but until now has been solely used for the case of gasification. This study aimed to apply the tar protocol for pyrolysis and to enhance the detectability of the method for a wider range of tars by means of elemental analysis, attenuated total reflectance (ATR) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). GC- MS was performed by means of a specific column for PAHs identification and calibration methods were developed for the proper quantification of naphthalene which is the dominant tar compound. The results of the analysis showed that naphthalene concentration increased from torrefaction to carbonization but then decreased significantly for high temperature pyrolysis at 860 °C.
Interrelationships of metal transfer factor under wastewater reuse and soil pollution J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-04-20 D. Papaioannou, I.K. Kalavrouziotis, P.H. Koukoulakis, F. Papadopoulos, P. Psoma
The transfer of heavy metals under soil pollution wastewater reuse was studied in a Greenhouse experiment using a randomized block design, including 6 treatments of heavy metals mixtures composed of Zn, Mn, Cd, Co, Cu, Cr, Ni, and Pb, where each metal was taking part in the mixture with 0, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 mg/kg respectively, in four replications. The Beta vulgaris L (beet) was used as a test plant. It was found that the metal transfer factors were statistically significantly related to the: (i) DTPA extractable soil metals, (ii) the soil pollution level as assessed by the pollution indices, (iii) the soil pH, (iv) the beet dry matter yield and (v) the interactions between the heavy metals in the soil. It was concluded that the Transfer Factor is subjected to multifactor effects and its real nature is complex, and there is a strong need for further study for the understanding of its role in metal-plant relationships.
Evaluation of Effective Microorganisms on home scale organic waste composting J. Environ. Manage. (IF 4.01) Pub Date : 2017-04-17 Yee Van Fan, Chew Tin Lee, Jiří Jaromír Klemeš, Lee Suan Chua, Mohamad Roji Sarmidi, Chee Woh Leow
Home composting can be an effective way to reduce the volume of municipal solid waste. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of Effective Microorganism™ (EM) for the home scale co-composting of food waste, rice bran and dried leaves. A general consensus is lacking regarding the efficiency of inoculation composting. Home scale composting was carried out with and without EM (control) to identify the roles of EM. The composting parameters for both trials showed a similar trend of changes during the decomposition. As assayed by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), the functional group of humic acid was initially dominated by aliphatic structure but was dominated by the aromatic in the final compost. The EM compost has a sharper peak of aromatic CC bond presenting a better degree of humification. Compost with EM achieved a slightly higher temperature at the early stage, with foul odour suppressed, enhanced humification process and a greater fat reduction (73%). No significant difference was found for the final composts inoculated with and without EM. The properties included pH (∼7), electric conductivity (∼2), carbon-to-nitrogen ratio (C: N < 14), colour (dark brown), odour (earthy smell), germination index (>100%), humic acid content (4.5–4.8%) and pathogen content (no Salmonella, <1000 Most Probable Number/g E. coli). All samples were well matured within 2 months. The potassium and phosphate contents in both cases were similar however the EM compost has a higher nitrogen content (+1.5%). The overall results suggested the positive effect provided by EM notably in odour control and humification.
Some contents have been Reproduced by permission of The Royal Society of Chemistry.
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