The occurrence, fate and removal of microplastics (MPs) in a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in Central Italy were investigated together with their potential adverse effects on anaerobic processes. In the influent of the WWTP, 3.6 MPs.L−1 were detected that mostly comprised polyester fibers and particles in the shape of films, ranging 0.1–0.5 mm and made of polyethylene and polypropylene (PP). The full-scale conventional activated sludge scheme removed 86% of MPs, with the main reduction in the primary and secondary settling. MPs particles bigger than 1 mm were not detected in the final effluent and some loss of polymers types were observed. In comparison, the pilot-scale upflow granular anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) + anaerobic membrane bioreactor (AnMBR) configuration achieved 94% MPs removal with the abatement of 87% of fibers and 100% of particles. The results highlighted an accumulation phenomenon of MPs in the sludge and suggested the need to further investigate the effects of MPs on anaerobic processes. Accordingly, PP-MPs at concentrations from 5 PP-MPs.gTS−1 to 50 PP-MPs.gTS−1 were spiked in the pilot-scale UASB reactor that was fed with real municipal wastewater, where up to 58% decrease in methanogenic activity was observed at the exposure of 50 PP-MPs.gTS−1. To the best of our knowledge, the presented results are the first to report of PP-MPs inhibition on anaerobic processes.

Microplastics in real wastewater treatment schemes: Comparative assessment and relevant inhibition effects on anaerobic processes / Pittura, L.; Foglia, A.; Akyol, C.; Cipolletta, G.; Benedetti, M.; Regoli, F.; Eusebi, A. L.; Sabbatini, S.; Tseng, L. Y.; Katsou, E.; Gorbi, S.; Fatone, F.. - In: CHEMOSPHERE. - ISSN 0045-6535. - 262:(2021), p. 128415. [10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.128415]

Microplastics in real wastewater treatment schemes: Comparative assessment and relevant inhibition effects on anaerobic processes

Pittura L.
Primo
;
Foglia A.
;
Akyol C.
;
Cipolletta G.;Benedetti M.;Regoli F.;Eusebi A. L.;Sabbatini S.;Gorbi S.;Fatone F.
Ultimo
2021-01-01

Abstract

The occurrence, fate and removal of microplastics (MPs) in a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in Central Italy were investigated together with their potential adverse effects on anaerobic processes. In the influent of the WWTP, 3.6 MPs.L−1 were detected that mostly comprised polyester fibers and particles in the shape of films, ranging 0.1–0.5 mm and made of polyethylene and polypropylene (PP). The full-scale conventional activated sludge scheme removed 86% of MPs, with the main reduction in the primary and secondary settling. MPs particles bigger than 1 mm were not detected in the final effluent and some loss of polymers types were observed. In comparison, the pilot-scale upflow granular anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) + anaerobic membrane bioreactor (AnMBR) configuration achieved 94% MPs removal with the abatement of 87% of fibers and 100% of particles. The results highlighted an accumulation phenomenon of MPs in the sludge and suggested the need to further investigate the effects of MPs on anaerobic processes. Accordingly, PP-MPs at concentrations from 5 PP-MPs.gTS−1 to 50 PP-MPs.gTS−1 were spiked in the pilot-scale UASB reactor that was fed with real municipal wastewater, where up to 58% decrease in methanogenic activity was observed at the exposure of 50 PP-MPs.gTS−1. To the best of our knowledge, the presented results are the first to report of PP-MPs inhibition on anaerobic processes.
2021
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11566/289477
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