Waste Management

Waste Management

  • John L Freeman asked a question:
    Does anyone need a fast growing high biomass selenium or nitrate hyperaccumulator for environmental cleanup?

    We have access to a Brassica species and a grass species that can be used for soil or water remediation.

  • Florin Constantin Mihai added an answer:
    What role do you see for the Scientific Community in improving Municipal Waste Management?
    Having come across a lot of questions on Municipal Waste Management over the last few weeks I do wonder what role awaits the Scientific & Research Communities? While I agree wholeheartedly the need for Public Awareness, Education, Community Effort, Minimization of Waste Generation at source, etc. are all important and have significant roles to perform in the near future but one cannot disregard the fact that wastes will continue to be generated and that too at a furious pace in the time being. What in your opinion could be done by the Scientific Community and Research Institutions to improve the present scenario?
    Florin Constantin Mihai · Romanian Environment Association (ARM-1998)

    Engineering and economical works still prevail in waste management studies …I often notice the lack of spatial implications of such studies. There are no reliable data concerning waste indicators at administrative territorial units (urban and rural areas). Multi-scale analysis (NUTS 2-3-4) must be performed for a proper assessment of waste management sector and environmental planning. Geographical implications can no longer be ignored and interdisciplinary studies must to emerge for accurate results.

  • Anurag Saha added an answer:
    Traditional vs integrated waste management system…who’s the winner in your country?

    Traditional waste management systems is based on landfill of waste (often non-compliant sites with environmental regulations) and mixed waste collection with poor facilities for recycling and waste recovery. On the other hand, the integrated waste management systems are based on separate collection, 3R policy (reduce ,reuse, recycle) and energy recovery. Which systems prevail in your country? And what are the proper solutions in order to provide the transition to an integrated waste management system?

    Anurag Saha · University College Dublin

    Every management in my country (India) is under the influence of political leaders and local beneficiaries. Profit making is the only target!! So where money is more...interest for implementations automatically withstands. Still major portion of the country's waste management is under traditional influence (specially in the rural and rural-urban fringe regions) as the stakeholders earn more profits from the rural sectors.

    Hopefully, things will change soon... I feel ashamed to say all these but this is the stark truth of MY country.

  • Massimo Pizzol added an answer:
    What collection system should be more efficient in a rural mountain region? “Door to door” or through collection points ?

    While I was studying the illegal dumping issue in rural areas of Neamt County (Romania) I noticed that type of waste collection services may influence the behavior of inhabitants regarding the waste disposal. Frequently, the linear morphology of villages (built-up areas) along the rivers and tributaries favor the waste dumping on their banks near the households. In case the localities are served by sanitation services it seems that “ door to door” system is more effective than collection points. In the latter case the proper location of these points within a village is crucial in order to avoid the illegal dumping. Also, there can be a combination between these two systems..such as “door to door” system for mixed wastes and collection point for recyclables. What is your opinion about these collection systems ..? Which of those should be more effective in a mountain region?

  • Florin Constantin Mihai added an answer:
    What difficulties might you experience in your country (or region) in order to perform studies related to rural waste management issues?

    Papers related to rural waste management issues are not quite widespread in literature. What difficulties might you experience in your country (or region) in order to perform such studies?

    Florin Constantin Mihai · Romanian Environment Association (ARM-1998)

    Thank you ! I appreciate your contribution

  • Florin Constantin Mihai added an answer:
    Is illegal dumping a major environmental threat in your country?

    Waste dumping on surroundings of human settlements (rivers & tributaries, local roadsides, public areas, forests , pastures, old geological sites etc) are still current bad practices in urban (peripheral areas) and rural territories. Several articles outline such bad practices across the world (including for poor or developed countries). This threat has complex implications for society and environment (social, economical, technical, cultural, administrative, political, geographical etc) including several waste fractions ( household, industrial , agricultural wastes, WEEE, old tires, batteries, construction and demolition waste etc) and the solutions may vary from one country to other. In this context, is illegal dumping a major environmental threat in your country? Please highlight the best solutions applied in order to mitigate this threat…

    Florin Constantin Mihai · Romanian Environment Association (ARM-1998)

    Small cities (< 20 000 inhabitants) are often predisposed to illegal dumping due to improper waste management facilities. Also rural localities included in territorial administrative units of cities are facing the illegal dumping issue. Illegal rural dumpsites should be closed and rehabilitated until 16 July 2009 according to EU rules. Following this deadline…local authorities were obliged to provide regular waste collection services and to transport the wastes to urban landfills in the proximity until transfer stations will be operational ( part of regional integrated waste management systems financed through EU funds) This scenario is rarely seen on the field… the lack of proper waste management facilities ( or delaying in their implementations) lead to “reactivation” of these old sites by citizens . However..several improvements were made in the last years but the rhythm is easy-going. Thus, the illegal dumping issue remains a major environmental threat in rural Romania.

  • Paul H. Brunner asked a question:
    Do you know of any qualitative recycling indicators?

    The EU and others prescribe quantitative recycling standards, e.g. xy % of the mass of end of life vehicles must be recycled. Such standards do not take into account environmental and health issues, e.g. they do not consider hazardous substances that are recycled back to the consumer. Hence, in addition to quantitative recycling standards we need some qualitative criteria that protect consumers and the environment from recycled hazardous substances. Have you ever heard of such indicators, or can you suggest some?

  • Abraham Mavridis added an answer:
    Do you think that GEOGRAPHY may have significant contributions in waste management studies ?

    Waste management is obviously a multi and interdisciplinary field with complex and numerous implications for biotic, abiotic and social-economical systems. Spatial-temporal analysis of waste indicators in a multi-scale context and spatial analysis of waste management facilities ( using cartography and GIS techniques) are already important tools in environmental planning. In this context… geography as an interface science between nature and human activities can be more “engaged” in waste management studies ?

    Abraham Mavridis · American Farm School of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece

    I completely agree with all the above answers. Besides, the NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) concept stimulates a framework of spatial planning and zoning strategies that could be enhanced through geographical terms towards resiliant urban and rural environments and housing establishments so as to avoid implications of many operational projects and problems such as bad waste management processes.

  • Yugasen Travis added an answer:
    Does anybody have data on water or air pollution caused by stockpiles of bagasse?

    Hi guys I am looking for any data or studies on the pollution caused by excess stockpiles on the environment. Thanks

    Yugasen Travis · University of KwaZulu-Natal

    thank you everyone for your comments ,really helpfull:)

  • Prakash Mallappa Munnoli added an answer:
    Does anyone have knowledge on the bacterial concrete or microbial concrete?

    Please share your perspectives and experiences on the use of bacteria in concrete.

    Is it really an excellent tool for improving the properties of mortar and concrete? Is it cost effective? What you think ? What type of improvement does this technology (bacterial concrete) need? What types of parameters need to be investigated? Is this technology good for reinforced concrete also?

    Prakash Mallappa Munnoli · S D M College of Engineering and Technology

    Bacteria isolated mainly bacilli microbes have a positive co relation to reduce micro cracks. Our Civil Engineering students are working on this at very preliminary stage.

    bacillus subitus is one of the bacteria selected

    The characyeristics of this bacteria and EPS (exopolysaccharised ) secretes have binding properties.

    more in my next answer

  • James F Peters added an answer:
    what are the bio conversion methods for potato waste

    Potato chips is liked by many human beings and there is a increasing demand for the production of potato chips. On the other side it is generating large quantity od peel waste needs to be addressed urjently.

    James F Peters · University of Manitoba

    In attempting to answer this question, I found the following Ph.D. thesis:

    E.I.P. Volcke, Modelling, analysis and control of partial nitration in a SHARON reactor, Ph.D. thesis, Ghent University, Belgium, 2006, 327 pp :


    This thesis is quite thorough.   In Section 3.2, starting on page 33, it gives the mathematics needed to set up a bio-conversion system that includes potato waste.

  • Prithvi Simha added an answer:
    What can we as 'Individuals' and NOT researchers or students and preachers of Science do to effect a positive change in our Environment?

    History has shown us that the seeds of change for any mass movement were sown by a few individuals or a group of people with common goals. Hence, my question to all of us here on RG is this;

    a) What steps must each of us as Human Beings take to improve our correlations and interactions with our environment? Please suggest steps that you consider are important to you and your community be it waste segregation or organic farming.


    b) What are the small-small changes that you can bring about in your way of life or please share the activities that you already have done to improve your relationship with the Environment.

    c) What changes can we as 'individuals' bring in our Environment and our surroundings through such individual efforts, be it in attitude/character/nature/actions/behavior? What will be the effect of such steps/actions where you live?


    d) Why do you think these changes will be important to you and your surroundings?


    e) Can the steps you take be scaled up and applied to your entire community and how will you go about doing this?


    Prithvi Simha · Central European University

    @Asmat Ali,

    Thanks for the contribution. An interesting view on smoking (air pollution) and noise pollution. As reported in Tobacco Control, the air pollution emitted by cigarettes is 10 times greater than diesel car exhaust, suggests a controlled experiment! 

    Introspection and Corrective Action seems to be a good way to move forward. 

  • Moruf Olalekan Yusuf added an answer:
    Can anyone provide any literature or reference paper for XRD analysis of concrete containing rice husk ash?

    XRD analysis of concrete containing rice husk ash.

    Moruf Olalekan Yusuf · University of Science Malaysia

    XRD is a technique to study the mineral characterization of  a pulverized sample. Besides,  the  type of binder used  (OPC or geopolymer)  may have significant impacts on the type of phases obtained in the characterization.  It will be also nice to study the oxide composition of the  flyash abinitio by using XRF technique so that the elments found in the phases could be traced to the source material. 

  • Ljubomir Jacić added an answer:
    How can we elaborate on the need of municipal solid waste management in developing countries?
    With the progress in developing countries, the amount of MSW generated is increasing at an alarming rate. With the absence of segregation norms or multiple bins concept in our region, the waste cannot be recycled and utilized effectively.

    How to address this problem?
    Ljubomir Jacić · Technical College Požarevac

    A paper that describes the Solid Waste Management in Belgrade "Paradigm shift needed - municipal solid waste management in Belgrade, Serbia" is attached!

    The experiences of City of NIS are given in the following paper where multi-objective optimization was done in order to improve SWM process!

  • Zulqarnain . added an answer:
    Can anyone tell me the thirst area in research?
    Am interested know the thirst area in research which I could select for the study.
    Zulqarnain . · Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Agricultural University, Peshawar

    In which specific area you have the expertise?  Then I can suggest you accordingly :-)

  • Kunal Garg added an answer:
    Is it economical to use crude bacterial protein powder and carbon nanotubes in concrete instead of using bacteria and other micro/nano wastes?

    These days microbial concrete or self healing concrete is gaining much popularity for the bioremediation of cracks. Studies reported use of bacterial cells for such bioremediation by calcite production. During some literature survey, I found few papers on extraction of protein from bacterial cell, its powder formation by using lyophilizer and then they cured the cracked concrete/mortar in water containing extracted protein powder. Is this econimical instead of using bacterial cell as whole calcite producing organism? What is the role of protein in concrete? Is protein secreted something that plugs the cracks or triggers something?

    On the other hand, use of industrial waste by-products improved the performance of concrete or mortar up to certain extent of additions. This may acts as an econimical option for the production of concrete with improved properties to reutilize the wastes. But some studies reported the use of carbon nano tubes and other man made/ designed materials to improved the properties of concrete/mortar. Can nano particles/tubes also acts as an economical option for the production of concrete? How can these nanotubes be syntheized or are these some waste-by products?


    Please clear my queries. I will be highly thankful for your valuale suggestions and discussions.

    Kunal Garg · Thapar University

    Dear Gonuguntla Sir,

    I agree with your answer.

    But my question is different, I asked for economics of using protein extracted from bacteria and other things (explained in question) in concrete compared with the utilization of bacterial cell as whole organism.


  • SureshKumar M added an answer:
    If the attitude of man has an impact on waste disposal methods, then what are the effective methods of managing waste disposal in the environment?
    My previous question actually gives a way to imbibe a good culture on waste disposal by man. From the responses so far, it shows that attitude has an impact on waste disposal methods, then what will be the effective ways of managing waste disposal.
    SureshKumar M · Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Viswa Mahavidyalaya University

    If people find money from waste means they cooperate with the government. Like door to door collection of plastics, metal wastes,etc. spot paying money for it that means people seriously handle the waste instead of illegal dumping because of the benefit got from it. Government in developing countries has to develop some organization to monitor the waste strategy in micro level otherwise it may leads to serious environemental threat to the future generation. People wont co operate without their benefit or stirct regulation formed by the government.

  • Pierre Buffière added an answer:
    I'm looking for the methanogenic potential of sugarcane residue or straw (Nm3Ch4/tTS)? Can someone help me?
    I am trying to determine the energetic power of sugarcane straw in my region, but I can't find the biogas potential.
    Pierre Buffière · Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon

    From personal data, the methane potential for bagasse is between 200 and 250 Liters of methane per kg of Volatile solid.

  • Arun Kumar Pradhan added an answer:
    What developments are there for the safe disposal of waste emulsion generated in industries?
    The metal rolling industry uses oil and water emulsions containing from about 50,000 to 100,000 parts per million of oil. Emulsions at these concentrations of oil cannot, therefore, be passed directly into a public waterway without prior treatment.
    Arun Kumar Pradhan · Institute of Minerals and Materials Technology
    Methods of waste water/oil mixtures (emulsion) treatment :
    1. Gravity separators
    2. Coalescers
    3. Skimmers
    4. Centrifuges
    5. Hydrocyclones
    6. Evaporators.
    7. Filters

    For more fdelatils about all these processes please click this link
  • Edward Calt added an answer:
    Why is faecal sludge management in developing countries a complete failure?
    Following substantial capital investment in sanitation infrastructure, it is evident that building on-site sanitation (e.g., pit latrines, septic tanks, etc) is not a solution on its own right for the disposal/management of human excreta. Dealing with faecal sludge is the next nightmare of many developing countries, which have made substantial progress towards meeting the Millennium Developing Goals (MDGs) but still are not able to provide a source-to-end solution (regardless what we call the end point of the chain - e.g., disposal, treatment facility, resource recovery facility, commercialisation of end products, etc).

    From the technical point of view, it is fair to say that even old fashion technologies are still relevant and capable to deal with faecal sludge (I.e., drying beds, co-composting, sludge wetlands, etc) and although many are trying new 'high-tech' solutions (microwaves), it seems we all are waiting for developing the right technology (a magic wand perhaps or a sophisticated vapooriser?).

    So, Why faecal sludge management in developing countries is a complete failure? any thoughts?
    Edward Calt · Integrated Biochem
    Form our work on sewer cake (fecal sludge) we have found that this waste stream can be broken down into grit, water, proteins and volatile fatty acids. What we have come to believe is the sewer cake is a colloid consisting of cellulose, water, and grit/flocculant. It is the cellulose that binds the water to the material. Out test using the Managed Ecosystem Fermentation have shown that the cellulose can be converted into proteins. This would permit the water and generated proteins and VFA's to be recycled back to the front end of the treatment process for biological disposition. The residual grit can be then be extracted for either reuse as a flocculant or other applications.
  • Y M A M Wijerathna added an answer:
    What are the effects of rapid drying food waste / farm waste for biochar manufacturer?
    Could you please give me any idea or related papers or articles.
    Y M A M Wijerathna · Wayamba University of Sri lanka
    Thank you very much Simha :)
  • Ricardo A Melo added an answer:
    Is it possible to use agar extraction waste?
    Fertilizer, Poultry & Animal Feed.
    Ricardo A Melo · University of Lisbon
    Hello Helena, this group from University of Porto, Portugal, published several articles on using agarophyte (Gelidium) extraction waste in effluent heavy metal treatments. Just one example: Vilar, V. J. P., Martins, R. J. E., Botelho, C. M. S., & Boaventura, R. A. R. (2009). Removal of Cu and Cr from an industrial effluent using a packed-bed column with algae Gelidium-derived material. Hydrometallurgy, 96(1–2), 42–46. doi:10.1016/j.hydromet.2008.07.015
  • Edward Calt added an answer:
    How does technology help West African states in conversion of waste to wealth?
    No waste is wastage because they're many technological ways of converting waste into money via composting process, Anaerobic digestion [ wind rows or in-vessels].
    Edward Calt · Integrated Biochem
    The question that need to be addressed is what do the West African states need to improve both the economics and health of the population. Is there a need to produce affordable high protein animal feed and foreign currency; or is the focus just on producing materials that command much higher values that can generate even more foreign exchange?

    Integrated BioChem has developed a fermentation technology that converts organic matter into proteins. These proteins can be processed either into high protein animal feed or into protein binders and phospholipids as well as several volatile fatty acids. Unlike most commercial process we take a non-sterile, non-homogenous organic matter and process it under non-sterile conditions at atmospheric pressure and low temperatures and produce a range of products that have multiple markets. I would be interested in discussing the application of this technology to the West African states.
  • Yadiana León added an answer:
    Why are waste management issues so difficult to deal with?
    The total quantities and characteristics of waste streams generated are yet unknown, with uncategorized refuse, poorly collected, dumped at insanitary landfills, hence exposing workers, scavengers, etc., to the dangers of hazardous waste. This appalling garbage situation needs efficient corrective measures or serious rehabilitation; otherwise it will adversely impact the living conditions of the people, further endangering their environment and health.
    Yadiana León · Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cientificas
    Interesting question. Currently excess "waste" is one of the most pressing problems that society has to face due to rapid population growth, industrial activity, increasing production and increasing trends in consumer habits, causing the generation of toxic products or very difficult to incorporate into the cycles of the natural elements. The waste management problems are difficult to treat in some countries,for little incentive or lack of financial resources and of trained human resources to carry out this work without causing negative impacts on the environment. Avoiding these effects only possible with proper management of the process of industrialization from product development to disposal ,reducing, recycling and reuse of all materials that allow it. With this we can avoid the one hand the destruction of our environment and on the other hand, We will be promoting their proper development, which will impact positively on the quality of our present and future life.
  • Joe Olechno added an answer:
    How to replace "Hominy corn" for Alpha-Amylase activity standardization in Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF) determination?
    I have to standardize Alpha-Amylase activity for NDF determination. However, what I can find is just protocols requiring "Hominy corn". Can I replace it with something else?

    I can't find "Hominy corn", it is not a common product in Europe and it seems a "non-standard" material for standardization... I'm not an expert in analytical chemistry, this is my first attempt in NDF/ADF/ADL determination using a FOSS FiberCap instrument. Do you have any suggestions?
    Joe Olechno · Labcyte Inc.
    Hello Federico,
    Hominy is just field corn (maize, Zea mays) that has been first dried and then soaked in calcium (or sodium) hydroxide solution. As a common food item in Mexico and southern US, you can order it from Amazon.com. For example, "Hominy Grits, White, 10 Lb Bag" from Angelina's Gourmet will cost $14.95 plus $9.25 shipping. It would be great if all reagents were that cheap.
    DO NOT BUY cooked or canned hominy (or pozole). The enzymes will be denatured. DO NOT BUY instant grits. Again, the processing will have destroyed the enzymes.
    Hominy will be sold either whole grain or cracked. I suggest that you get a coarse grind rather than the whole grain or the fine powder (which may have been heated during grinding thus reducing the enzyme activity).
    Good luck.

    by Angelina's Gourmet
  • Ines Lacchetti added an answer:
    Has anyone investigated the ecotoxicological risk for waste (H14)?
    Which battery of bioassays do you utilize? Do you prepare the leachate with distilled water or with the organism test water?
    Ines Lacchetti · Istituto Superiore di Sanità
    Pierre, Thank you very much for your answers.
    Yes the leachate is obtained from waste with deionized water but when I tested sample at 100%, following ISO, I think is not quite good for organisms that need some microelements present instead in their medium.
  • Isam Janajreh added an answer:
    Is it safe to produce energy from municipal solid waste using gasification technology or will it produce pollution while generating power?
    I am interested in how to utilize waste.
    Isam Janajreh · Masdar Institute of Science and Technology
    The heating value of MSW mix is nearly 10-12MJ/kg (45MJ/kg for diesel), as this waste is pretty complex traditional gasification poses several issues and hence the high temperature plasma could be most appropriate choice. Alternatively co-firing with a higher heating value (i.e. coal, biomass) can lessen these issues. Temperature always takes care of everything, but of course higher temperature implies lower efficiency (theoretically in IGCC gasification efficiency is near 60%, practically is 45% or even much lower for MSW). Higher temperature gasification produces specific pollutant gases, some tars (unburned hydrocarbons), but a narrower banded of pollutants (NOx, H2S, HCN, Sox, etc) that again current gas cleaning technology can handle. Let me state that treating MSW needs to be a portfolio solution that is several technologies, rather one technology over the other as each technology such as thermochemical (combustion, gasification, pyrolysis), bio-chemical (digestion and fermentation), physco-chemical (transesterification) have their pros and cons. What also works for one community may not work for other. For example while high temperature leads to a near complete conversion and relatively fast and needs high throughput (economy of the scale as small gasifier are inefficient), the digestion however is slow and never been complete. The former however leaves you with fly ash, gas to clean additional to unstable slag or bottom ash whereas the byproduct of the latter is a slug that can be further treated as compost for soil remediation.
  • Mohamad mahdi Hadilam added an answer:
    How can value be recovered from healthcare waste?
    This seminar, which will be hosted by the University of Northampton, will explore the issues associated with this question
    yes one company do in in the world
  • Prithvi Simha added an answer:
    How should the Housing Sector in India develop?
    Our country is the most populated in the world. Everyday land fragmentation is increasing among Indian Families. Our housing sector is developing vertically, so, everyday the Environment Pollution is also increasing. To control and minimize the pollution problems, what steps must be taken by every Indian citizen and the Indian government. Please suggest your opinion.
    Prithvi Simha · Central European University
    Adopt Ecological Sanitation in Municipal Wastewater Systems. It emphasizes on source separation of human wastes, and subsequent recycling of nutrients present in those waste back to agricultural fields. This concept is called Closed Loop Sanitation where we not only are able to provide a safe pathogen free pathway for human wastes but also are able to successfully recycle resources that have been shown to act as excellent fertilizers!


  • Prithvi Simha added an answer:
    What are the current research topics on sawdust?
    Saw dust uses for engineering structures e.g. Road pavements, buildings, energy etc
    Prithvi Simha · Central European University
    It can be used for Toxic Metal Removal; Have a look at a very recent article on this at:

    DOI: 10.1002/clen.201300934

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