Non-point source (NPS) pollution has become a vital contaminant source affecting the water environment because of its wide distribution, hydrodynamic complexity, and difficulty in prevention and control. In this study, the identification and evaluation of NPS pollution risk based on landscape pattern were carried out in the Hanjiang River basin above Ankang hydrological section, Shaanxi province, China. Landscape distribution information was obtained through land use data, analyzing the contribution of "source-sink" landscape to NPS pollution through the location-weighted landscape contrast index. Using the NPS pollution risk index to identify and evaluate the regional NPS pollution risk considering the slope, cost distance, soil erosion, and precipitation erosion affect migration of pollutants. The results showed that (i) the pollution risk was generally high in the whole watershed, and the sub-watersheds dominated by "source" landscapes account for 74.61% of the whole basin; (ii) the high-risk areas were distributed in the central, eastern, and western regions of the river basin; the extremely high-risk areas accounted for 12.7% of the whole watershed; and the southern and northern regions were dominated by forestland and grassland with little pollution risk; (iii) "source" landscapes were mostly distributed in areas close to the river course, which had a great impact on environment, and the landscape pattern units near the water body needed to be further adjusted to reduce the influence of NPS pollution.
The present work investigates the feasibility of aerobic granulation for the treatment of low-medium strength domestic wastewater for long-term operation and effects of a static mixer on the properties and removal performances of the aerobic granules formed. The static mixer was installed in a sequential batch reactor to provide higher hydrodynamic shear force in enhancing the formation of the aerobic granules. Aerobic granules were successfully formed in the domestic wastewater, and the granulation treatment system was sustained for a period of 356 days without granules disintegration. Subsequent to the installation, aerobic granules with a low SVI30 of 41.37 mL/gTSS, average diameter 1.11 mm, granular strength with integrity coefficient 10.4% and regular shape with minimum filamentous outgrowth were formed. Mineral concentrations such as Fe, Mg, Ca and Na as well as composition of protein and polysaccharide in tightly bound-extracellular polymeric substance of the aerobic granules were found to be higher under the effect of the static mixer. However, no significant improvement was observed on the TCOD, NH4+-N and TSS removal performance. Good TCOD and TSS removal performance of above 85% and 90%, respectively and moderate NH4+-N removal performance of about 60% were observed throughout the study. Higher simultaneous nitrification and denitrification (SND) efficiency of 56% was observed after the installation of the static mixer, as compared to 21% prior. Therefore, it may be concluded that the installation of the static mixer significantly improved the properties of aerobic granules formation and SND efficiency but not the TCOD, NH4+-N and TSS removal performance.
This paper presents the promising method of synchronizing the Six Sigma and reliability analyses at 15 sewage treatment plants (STPs) operating in Melaka, Malaysia. Five different suspended growth treatment technologies in various capacities were investigated. The sequential batch reactor (SBR) and extended aeration activated sludge (EAAS) processes, conventional activated sludge (CAS), aerated lagoon (AL), and oxidation pond (OP) were compared using innovative Niku's treatment reliability and Six Sigma process capability method for biological oxygen demand (BOD5), chemical oxygen demand (COD), total suspended solids (TSS), oil and grease (O&G), and ammoniacal nitrogen (NH3-N) effluent parameters and justified the importance of understanding the lognormal behavior of the effluent parameters in interpreting the performance monitoring results and discharge compliance. The results showed that the SBR and EAAS systems relatively fulfilled the highest performance (>95%) compared to conventional systems to ensure the high quality of effluent discharge. Although the whole system is incapable of removing nutrients efficiently, ranging between 42.31% and 90.48%, may lead to eutrophication issues. Process modification and treatment control should become a critical priority in order to reduce variability, improve stability, and increase the efficiency of nutrient removal. These initiatives promote global sustainable development goals (SDGs) 2030 and the domestic water sector transformation (WST) 2040 by treatment cost reduction, improving environmental sustainability and guaranteeing social and health benefits.
A large amount of ammonia volatilization from the agricultural system causes environmental problems and increases production costs. Conservation agriculture has emerged as an alternate and sustainable crop production system. Therefore, in the present study, ammonia losses from different agricultural practices were evaluated for the wheat crop under different tillage practices. The results of the present study showed that the cumulative emission of ammonia flux from the wheat field varied from 6.23 to 24.00 kg ha-1 (P ≤ 0.05) in conservation tillage (CA) and 7.03 to 26.58 kg ha-1 (P ≤ 0.05) in conventional tillage (CT) among different treatments. Application of basal 80% nitrogen resulted in the highest ammonia flux in conventional and conservation tillage practices. The ammonia volatilization followed the following trend: urea super granules with band placement > neem-coated urea with band placement > neem-coated urea with broadcast before irrigation > neem-coated urea with broadcast after irrigation > slow-release N fertilizer (urea stabilized with DCD and N(n-butyl)thiophosphoric triamide) with band placement. The conservation agricultural practices involving conservation tillage appear to be a sustainable approach for minimizing ammonia volatilization and improving wheat productivity.
Removal of H2S (hydrogen sulfide) from biogas is anticipated for higher energy conversion of methane (CH4), while reducing the detrimental impacts of corroding the metal parts in the plant and its hazardous effect on humans and the environment. The introduction of microwave (MW) heating and nitrogen-modification could generate superior adsorbent features, contributing to high H2S removal. Up to date, there is no work reported on the influence of physicochemical characteristics of nitrogen-modified carbon synthesized via MW and conventional heating (TH) methods and their performance in H2S removal. Palm shell activated carbon (PSAC) was functionalized with nitrogen groups via urea impregnation, followed by the synthesis of MW and TH at 950 °C, 500 ml/min of N2 flow rate and 30 min of heating time. MW and TH heating effects on the modified PSAC adsorbent were analysed and compared towards hydrogen sulfide (H2S) removal. PSAC with nitrogen functionalization produced using MW heating (PSAC-MW) demonstrates superior performance, with an adsorption capacity of 356.94 mg/g. The adsorbent sample generated using MW heating exhibited notable properties, including a large surface area and a sponge-like structure, with new pores developed within the current pores. Instead of that, there was an observation of 'hot spot' appearance during the MW heating process, which is believed to be responsible for the development of physical and chemical characteristics of the adsorbent. Thus, it is believed that MW heating was assisted in the development of the adsorbent's properties and at the same time contributed to the high removal of H2S at low adsorption temperature. The utilization of biomass-based adsorbent (PSAC) for H2S removal can address the lignocellulosic waste disposal problem, while mitigating the H2S release from the biogas production plants thus has several environmental merits. This indirectly contributed to zero-waste generation, while overcoming the adverse effects of H2S.
Vegetation restoration is a widely used, effective, and sustainable method to improve soil quality in post-mining lands. Here we aimed to assess global patterns and driving factors of potential vegetation restoration effects on soil carbon, nutrients, and enzymatic activities. We synthesized 4838 paired observations extracted from 175 publications to evaluate the effects that vegetation restoration might have on the concentrations of soil carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus, as well as enzymatic activities. We found that (1) vegetation restoration had consistent positive effects on the concentrations of soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, available nitrogen, ammonia, nitrate, total phosphorus, and available phosphorus on average by 85.4, 70.3, 75.7, 54.6, 58.6, 34.7, and 60.4 %, respectively. Restoration also increased the activities of catalase, alkaline phosphatase, sucrase, and urease by 63.3, 104.8, 125.5, and 124.6 %, respectively; (2) restoration effects did not vary among different vegetation types (i.e., grass, tree, shrub and their combinations) or leaf type (broadleaved, coniferous, and mixed), but were affected by mine type; and (3) latitude, climate, vegetation species richness, restoration year, and initial soil properties are important moderator variables, but their effects varied among different soil variables. Our global scale study shows how vegetation restoration can improve soil quality in post-mining lands by increasing soil carbon, nutrients, and enzymatic activities. This information is crucial to better understand the role of vegetation cover in promoting the ecological restoration of degraded mining lands.
Available composting models do not describe accurately the dynamics of composting processes. Difficulty in modeling composting processes is attributed mainly to the unpredicted change in process rate caused by change in activation energy value (E). This article presented the results of an attempt made to utilize patterns of change in carbon, nitrogen and temperature profiles to model sewage sludge composting process as a multi-stage process. Results of controlled sewage sludge composting experiments were used in the study. All the experiments were carried out as batch experiments in a 300-liter Horizontal Drum Bioreactor (HDB). Analysis of the profiles of carbon, nitrogen and temperature has indicated that there were clear patterns that could be used to develop simple models of the process, the initial C/N ratio was between 7-8 and the final C/N ratio of the compost in most experiments were found to be around 15.0, indicating the compost was fully matured and could be used safely for agricultural purpose. Electrical conductivity of composting material decreased from 1.83 to 1.67 dS/m, after a period, it increased gradually from 2.01 to 2.23 dS/m and remained at around 2.33 dS/m till the end of composting. It is found that change in the concentration of total carbon can reasonably be described by three constant process rate coefficients (k1, k2, k3). It is found that the process starts with a certain process rate coefficient (k1) and continues until peak temperature is reached, then it reaches lower process (k2) in the declining phase of the thermophilic stage, and finally it proceeds with a faster process rate (k3) when maturation is reached. Change in the concentration of total nitrogen has shown to have the same patterns of change as carbon.
This study evaluated and compared the performance of two vertical flow constructed wetlands (VF) using expanded clay (VF1) and biochar (VF2), of which both are low-cost, eco-friendly, and exhibit potentially high adsorption as compared to conventional filter layers. Both VFs achieved relatively high removal for organic matters (i.e. Biological oxygen demand during 5 days, BOD5) and nitrogen, accounting for 9.5 - 10.5 g.BOD5.m-2.d-1 and 3.5 - 3.6 g.NH4-N.m-2.d-1, respectively. The different filter materials did not exert any significant discrepancy to effluent quality in terms of suspended solids, organic matters and NO3-N (P > 0.05), but they did influence NH4-N effluent as evidenced by the removal rate of that by VF1 and VF2 being of 82.4 ± 5.7 and 84.6 ± 6.4%, respectively (P
Coastal eutrophication is one of the pivotal factors driving occurrence of harmful algal blooms (HABs), whose underlying mechanism remained unclear. To better understand the nutrient regime triggering HABs and their formation process, the phytoplankton composition and its response to varying nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P), physio-chemical parameters in water and sediment in Johor Strait in March 2019 were analyzed. Surface and sub-surface HABs were observed with the main causative species of Skeletonema, Chaetoceros and Karlodinium. The ecophysiological responses of Skeletonema to the low ambient N/P ratio such as secreting alkaline phosphatase, regulating cell morphology (volume; surface area/volume ratio) might play an important role in dominating the community. Anaerobic sediment iron-bound P release and simultaneous N removal by denitrification and anammox, shaped the stoichiometry of N and P in water column. The decrease of N/P ratio might shift the phytoplankton community into the dominance of HABs causative diatoms and dinoflagellates.
Removal of nitrogenous and phosphorus compounds from aquaculture wastewater by green microalgae (Tetraselmis sp.) was investigated using a novel method of algal cell immobilization. Immobilized microalgae removed nitrogenous and phosphorous compounds efficiently from aquaculture wastewater. Results showed that Tetraselmis beads reduced significantly (p nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen and soluble reactive phosphorous concentration (0.08; 0.10 and 0.17 mg/L, respectively) from the initial concentration of 7.7, 3.1 and 2.0 mg/L respectively within 48 h compared to other treatments. Removal rate of total ammonia nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen and soluble reactive phosphorous were 99.2, 99.2 and 94.3% respectively, for the artificial wastewater within 24 h. For the shrimp pond wastewater, total ammonia nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen and soluble reactive phosphorous were reduced 98.9, 97.7 and 91.1% respectively within 48 h. It is concluded that Tetraselmis sp. beads is an effective means to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus levels in aquaculture wastewater.
The identification of nitrogen sources and cycling processes is critical to the management of nitrogen pollution. Here, we used both stable (δ15N-NO3-, δ18O-NO3-, δ15N-NH4+) and radiogenic (222Rn) isotopes together with nitrogen concentrations to evaluate the relative importance of point (i.e. sewage) and diffuse sources (i.e. agricultural-derived NO3- from groundwater, drains and creeks) in driving nitrogen dynamic in a shallow coastal embayment, Port Phillip Bay (PPB) in Victoria, Australia. This study is an exemplar of nitrogen-limited coastal systems around the world where nitrogen contamination is prevalent and where constraining it may be challenging. In addition to surrounding land use, we found that the distributions of NO3- and NH4+ in the bay were closely linked to the presence of drift algae. Highest NO3- and NH4+ concentrations were 315 μmol L-1 and 2140 μmol L-1, respectively. Based on the isotopic signatures of NO3- (δ15N: 0.17 to 21‰; δ18O: 3 to 26‰) and NH4+ (δ15N: 30 to 39‰) in PPB, the high nitrogen concentrations were attributed to three major sources which varied between winter and summer; (1) nitrified sewage effluent and drift algae derived NH4+ mainly during winter, (2) NO3- mixture from atmospheric deposition, drains and creeks predominantly observed during summer and (3) groundwater and sewage derived NO3- during both surveys. The isotopic composition of NO3- also suggested the removal of agriculture-derived NO3- through denitrification was prevalent during transport. This study highlights the role of terrestrial-coastal interactions on nitrogen dynamics and illustrates the importance of submarine groundwater discharge as a prominent pathway of diffuse NO3- inputs. Quantifying the relative contributions of multiple NO3- input pathways, however, require more extensive efforts and is an important avenue for future research.
The present study proposes a system for co-composting food waste and poultry manure amended with rice husk biochar at different doses (0, 3, 5, 10%, w/w), saw dust, and salts. The effect of rice husk biochar on the characteristics of final compost was evaluated through stabilization indices such as electrical conductivity, bulk density, total porosity, gaseous emissions and nitrogen conservation. Results indicated that when compared to control, the biochar amendment extended the thermophilic stage of the composting, accelerated the biodegradation and mineralization of substrate mixture and helped in the maturation of the end product. Carbon dioxide, methane and ammonia emissions were reduced and the nitrogen conservation was achieved at a greater level in the 10% (w/w) biochar amended treatments. This study implies that the biochar and salts addition for co-composting food waste and poultry manure is beneficial to enhance the property of the compost.
Nitrogen-rich materials such as poultry litter (PL) contributes to substantial N and C loss in the form of ammonia (NH3) and carbon dioxide (CO2) during composting. Biochar can act as a sorbent of ammonia (NH3) and CO2 emission released during co-composting. Thus, co-composting poultry litter with rice husk biochar as a bulking agent is a good technique to mitigate NH3 volatilization and CO2 emission. A study was conducted to evaluate the effects of composting the mixtures of poultry litter with rice husk biochar at different ratios on NH3 and CO2 emissions. Four mixtures of poultry litter and rice husk biochar at different rate were composted at 0:1, 0.5:1, 1.3:1 and 2.3:1 ratio of rice husk biochar (RHB): poultry litter (PL) on a dry weight basis to achieve a suitable C/N ratio of 15, 20, 25, and 30, respectively. The results show that composting poultry litter with rice husk biochar can accelerate the breakdown of organic matter, thereby shortening the thermophilic phase compared to composting using poultry litter alone. There was a significant reduction in the cumulative NH3 emissions, which accounted for 78.38%, 94.60%, and 97.30%, for each C/N ratio of 20, 25, and 30. The total nitrogen (TN) retained relative was 75.96%, 85.61%, 90.24%, and 87.89% for each C/N ratio of 15, 20, 25, and 30 at the completion of composting. Total carbon dioxide lost was 5.64%, 6.62%, 8.91%, and 14.54%, for each C/N ratio of 15, 20, 21, and 30. In addition, the total carbon (TC) retained were 66.60%, 72.56%, 77.39%, and 85.29% for 15, 20, 25, and 30 C/N ratios and shows significant difference as compared with the initial reading of TC of the compost mixtures. In conclusion, mixing and composting rice husk biochar in poultry litter with C/N ratio of 25 helps in reducing the NH3 volatilization and CO2 emissions, while reducing the overall operational costs of waste disposal by shortening the composting time alongside nitrogen conservation and carbon sequestration. In formulating the compost mixture with rice husk biochar, the contribution of C and N from the biochar can be neglected in the determination of C/N ratio to predict the rate of mineralization in the compost because biochar has characteristic of being quite inert and recalcitrant in nature.
Bioretention systems are among the most popular stormwater best management practices (BMPs) for urban runoff treatment. Studies on plant performance using bioretention systems have been conducted, especially in developed countries with a temperate climate, such as the USA and Australia. However, these results might not be applicable in developing countries with tropical climates due to the different rainfall regimes and the strength of runoff pollutants. Thus, this study focuses on the performance of tropical plants in treating urban runoff polluted with greywater using a bioretention system. Ten different tropical plant species were triplicated and planted in 30 mesocosms with two control mesocosms without vegetation. One-way ANOVA was used to analyze the performance of plants, which were then ranked based on their performance in removing pollutants using the total score obtained for each water quality test. Results showed that vetiver topped the table with 86.4% of total nitrogen (TN) removal, 93.5% of total phosphorus (TP) removal, 89.8% of biological oxygen demand (BOD) removal, 90% of total suspended solids (TSS) removal, and 92.5% of chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal followed by blue porterweed, Hibiscus, golden trumpet, and tall sedge which can be recommended to be employed in future bioretention studies.
As basic information for assessing reactivity and functionality of wetland-associated dissolved organic matter (DOM) based on their composition and structural properties, chemical characteristics of N in ultrafiltered DOM (UDON; >1 kD) isolated from wetland-associated rivers in three climates (cool-temperate, Hokkaido, Japan; sub-tropical, Florida, USA; tropical, Sarawak, Malaysia) were investigated. The UDON was isolated during dry and wet seasons, or during spring, summer, and autumn. The proportion of UDON present as humic substances, which was estimated as the DAX-8 adsorbed fraction, ranged from 47 to 91%, with larger values in the Sarawak than at the other sites. The yield of hydrolyzable amino acid N ranged 1.24 to 7.01 mg g(-1), which correlated positively to the total N content of UDOM and tended to be larger in the order of Florida>Hokkaido>Sarawak samples. X-ray photoelectron N1s spectra of UDON showed a strong negative correlation between the relative abundances of amide/peptide N and primary amine N. The relative abundances of amide/peptide N and primary amine N in the Sarawak samples were smaller (70-76%) and larger (20-23%) respectively compared to those (80-88% and 4-9%) in the Florida and Hokkaido samples. Assuming terminal amino groups and amide N of peptides as major constituents of primary amine N and amide/peptide N, respectively, the average molecular weight of peptides was smaller in the Sarawak samples than that in the Florida and Hokkaido samples. Seasonal variations in UDON composition were scarce in the Sarawak and Florida samples, whereas the distribution of humic substance-N and nonhumic substance-N and compositions of amino acids and N functional groups showed a clear seasonality in the Hokkaido samples. While aromatic N increased from spring to autumn, contributions from fresh proteinaceous materials were also enhanced during autumn, resulting in the highest N content of UDOM for this season.
The characteristics of urban stormwater pollution in the tropics are still poorly understood. This issue is crucial to the tropical environment because its rainfall and runoff generation processes are so different from temperate regions. In this regard, a stormwater monitoring program was carried out at three urban catchments (e.g. residential, commercial and industrial) in the southern part of Peninsular Malaysia. A total of 51 storm events were collected at these three catchments. Samples were analyzed for total suspended solids, 5-day biochemical oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand (COD), oil and grease, nitrate nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen, ammonia nitrogen (NH3-N), soluble reactive phosphorus and total phosphorus. Principal component analysis (PCA) and hierarchical cluster analysis were used to interpret the stormwater quality data for pattern recognition and identification of possible sources. The most likely sources of stormwater pollutants at the residential catchment were from surface soil and leachate of fertilizer from domestic lawns and gardens, whereas the most likely sources for the commercial catchment were from discharges of food waste and washing detergent. In the industrial catchment, the major sources of pollutants were discharges from workshops and factories. The PCA factors further revealed that COD and NH3-N were the major pollutants influencing the runoff quality in all three catchments.
This study assesses four predictive ecological models; Fuzzy Logic (FL), Recurrent Artificial Neural Network (RANN), Hybrid Evolutionary Algorithm (HEA) and multiple linear regressions (MLR) to forecast chlorophyll- a concentration using limnological data from 2001 through 2004 of unstratified shallow, oligotrophic to mesotrophic tropical Putrajaya Lake (Malaysia). Performances of the models are assessed using Root Mean Square Error (RMSE), correlation coefficient (r), and Area under the Receiving Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve (AUC). Chlorophyll-a have been used to estimate algal biomass in aquatic ecosystem as it is common in most algae. Algal biomass indicates of the trophic status of a water body. Chlorophyll- a therefore, is an effective indicator for monitoring eutrophication which is a common problem of lakes and reservoirs all over the world. Assessments of these predictive models are necessary towards developing a reliable algorithm to estimate chlorophyll- a concentration for eutrophication management of tropical lakes.
In this research, the capability of lateritic soil used as coagulant for the treatment of stabilized leachate from the Penang-Malaysia Landfill Site was investigated. The evaluation of lateritic soil coagulant in comparison with commercialized chemical coagulants, such as alum, was performed using conventional jar test experiments. The optimum pH and coagulant dosage were identified for the lateritic soil coagulant and the comparative alum coagulant. It was found that the application of lateritic soil coagulant was quite efficient in the removal of COD, color and ammoniacal-nitrogen content from the landfill leachate. The optimal pH value was 2.0, while 14 g/L of lateritic soil coagulant was sufficient in removing 65.7% COD, 81.8% color and 41.2% ammoniacal-nitrogen. Conversely, the optimal pH and coagulant dosage for the alum were pH 4.8 and 10 g/L respectively, where 85.4% COD, 96.4% color and 47.6% ammoniacal-nitrogen were removed from the same leachate sample. Additionally, the Sludge Volume Index (SVI) ratio of alum and lateritic soil coagulant was 53:1, which indicated that less sludge was produced and was an environmentally friendly product. Therefore, lateritic soil coagulant can be considered a viable alternative in the treatment of landfill leachate.
Composting is a good recycling method to fully utilise all the organic wastes present in kitchen waste due to its high nutritious matter within the waste. In this present study, the optimised mixture proportions of kitchen waste containing vegetable scraps (V), fish processing waste (F) and newspaper (N) or onion peels (O) were determined by applying the simplex-centroid mixture design method to achieve the desired initial moisture content and carbon-to-nitrogen (CN) ratio for effective composting process. The best mixture was at 48.5% V, 17.7% F and 33.7% N for blends with newspaper while for blends with onion peels, the mixture proportion was 44.0% V, 19.7% F and 36.2% O. The predicted responses from these mixture proportions fall in the acceptable limits of moisture content of 50% to 65% and CN ratio of 20-40 and were also validated experimentally.
A detailed study on the solution chemistry of red soil in South China is presented. Data are collected from two simulated column-leaching experiments with an improved setup to evaluate the effects of atmospheric N deposition (ADN) composition and ADN flux on agricultural soil acidification using a (15)N tracer technique and an in situ soil solution sampler. The results show that solution pH values decline regardless of the increase of the NH4(+)/NO3(-) ratio in the ADN composition or ADN flux, while exchangeable Al(3+), Ca(2+), Mg(2+), and K(+) concentrations increase at different soil depths (20, 40, and 60 cm). Compared with the control, ADN (60 kg per ha per year N, NH4(+)/NO3(-) ratio of 2 : 1) decreases solution pH values, increases solution concentrations of NO3(-)-N, Al(3+), Ca(2+) and Mg(2+) at the middle and lower soil depths, and promotes their removal. NH4(+)-N was not detected in red soil solutions of all the three soil layers, which might be attributed to effects of nitrification, absorption and fixation in farmland red soil. Some of the NO3(-)-N concentrations at 40-60 cm soil depth exceed the safe drinking level of 10 mg L(-1), especially when the ADN flux is beyond 60 kg ha(-1) N. These features are critical for understanding the ADN agro-ecological effects, and for future assessment of ecological critical loads of ADN in red soil farmlands.