What is are the characteristic of paper and pulp mills effluent?
Depending on the type of operations utilized in the plant, pulp and paper mills create massive amounts of effluent, the improper disposal of which can be extremely detrimental to the environment and human health. Such effluent must be appropriately treated before being released into the environment.
Given that there has been significant study and development in wastewater treatment across the world, the discharge of contaminants to the receiving environment has been limited.
However, traditional wastewater treatment methods used in the pulp and paper sector mainly comprised primary clearing followed by activated sludge treatments. However, further treatments such as sophisticated oxidation processes, biological treatments, membrane filtration, and so on are required to remove larger quantities of pollution.
Recycling and reuse of adequately treated wastewater has been stressed in order to minimize the consumption of freshwater. The best treatment techniques should be developed taking into account the type, volume, and properties of wastewaters. Furthermore, an efficient treatment system must be cost-effective and use a variety of physicochemical, biological, and hybrid treatment procedures.
Paper mill effluent characteristics
Raw material processing, pulping, pulp washing, screening, washing, bleaching, paper machine, and coating processes are the most polluting steps of paper production.
The effluent has a dark colour, a bad odour, a high organic content, and extremely high levels of COD, BOD, and pH. High organic matter and suspended material concentrations are often regarded as important contaminants in pulp and paper sector effluents. Among the paper-making processes, pulping, particularly chemical pulping, produces high-strength effluent including wood debris and soluble wood components, organic material, and suspended solid. Furthermore, the usage of chlorine for bleaching pulp creates a large number of harmful compounds since chlorine is needed to brighten the pulp.
The wastewater produced by the pulping process contains a variety of wood chemicals such as lignin, carbohydrate, and extractives. Chlorination is often the initial stage in kraft bleaching, and chlorinated organic compounds are created during this process.
The colour in paper mill effluent is caused by organic legends such as wood extractives, resins, synthetic dyes, tannins, lignin, and their breakdown products.
Treatment of pulp and paper mill wastewater is required to minimize pollutant load and comply with environmental regulations. For the treatment of pulp and paper industry wastewater, several approaches have been used, including physical, chemical, electrochemical, and biological processes.
The principal treatment procedures include sedimentation or flotation for initial clarity, and advanced oxidation for secondary treatment. The reduction of the COD index is commonly regarded as a measure of the efficacy of the wastewater treatment process at the treatment plant.
Traditional biological purification, according to studies, does not eliminate harmful chemicals as well as the overall content of organic compounds and may even result in the production of metabolites with much greater persistence and toxicity. Methods of physicochemical treatment are routinely utilized. Sedimentation, Reverse Osmosis, ultrafiltration, flotation, screening, coagulation, flocculation, ozonation, and electrolysis are all methods of removing suspended solids, colloidal particles, hazardous chemicals, floating materials, and colours from wastewater at the preliminary, primary, or tertiary phases of treatment.
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