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Journal Articles Journal of Environmental Management Year : 2022

Occurrence, analysis of microplastics in sewage sludge and their fate during composting: A literature review

Abstract

Microplastics (MP) are ubiquitous contaminants and their presence in sewage sludge has recently received attention as they may enter agro-ecosystems if sludge is used as organic soil amendment. Indeed, plastic particles (<5 mm) can be transported from wastewater and sewage sludge to the soil environment either directly within the plastic matrix or indirectly as adsorbed substances. In this paper, articles from 18 countries reporting the MP quantity and their characteristics in sewage sludge from wastewater treatment plants were reviewed and the MP concentration size and type were compared. The data show that MP abundance in sewage sludge ranged globally from 7.91 to 495 x 10(3) particles kg(-1) with highest abundance of fiber shape and MP size of less than 500 mu m. In this review, we summarized and discussed the methods most frequently used for extraction and characterization of MP in sewage sludge including organic matter removal, MP extraction; physical and morphological MP characterization and its chemical characterization for polymer identification. We also described the major factors potentially controlling the fate of MP during disposal strategies with particular focus on composting. We show that physical and microbiological factors are important for MP degradation during composting and suggest two remediation practices: (i) inoculation of the initial sludge with microbial plastic decomposers to remove MP from contaminated sewage sludge, and (ii) development of high temperature composting processes.
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Dates and versions

hal-03736696 , version 1 (22-07-2022)

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Bouchra El Hayany, Cornelia Rumpel, Mohamed Hafidi, Loubna El Fels. Occurrence, analysis of microplastics in sewage sludge and their fate during composting: A literature review. Journal of Environmental Management, 2022, 317, pp.115364. ⟨10.1016/j.jenvman.2022.115364⟩. ⟨hal-03736696⟩
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