Industrial wastewater generates large environmental impacts if they are not correctly treated. To limit these impacts, there is strict legislation that penalizes illegal dumping or poorly treated effluents. Industrial wastewater has a higher risk factor than urban wastewater, it is due to the chemical products used in the industrial manufacturing processes and the diversity of its compositions.
The concept of industrial wastewater treatment has been changing. Nowadays it is intended to go further, maximizing the efficiency of the process through the recycling and reuse of treated water, generation of energy in the purification process, recovery of nutrients like Nitrogen or Phosphorus, use the sewage sludge as compost and/or even manufacture of bioplastics.
Reuse treated water is the best way to boost the efficiency of the purification process, preserve the environment and bet on a circular economy. It is vital since water is a limited resource that must be preserved. Advanced treatments allow to reuse and recycle the treated water and qualify it for its following use.
Some examples of advanced treatments for reuse water would be the disinfection of pathogens (ex: UV), advanced filtration (through filtering media such as Activated Carbon and/or Anthracite, among others), advanced oxidation (ex: Ozone) and sieving, among others. At KEIKEN we can carry out the project and execution of these plants and technologies.
In order to obtain an Energy Use from the purification process, an anaerobic digestion is usually carried out in sludge line, which contains the highest BOD concentration. However, in many industries, such as dairy industry, which is characterized by high organic loads, an anaerobic biological treatment can be carried out in the water line.
A biogas is generated from the anaerobic process, it is mainly composed of methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2). Due to its composition, it has a very high calorific power, so it can be used to obtain energy. However, this biogas needs a previous desulphurization for its direct use to obtain energy.
With the energy use of the biogas generated, the energy consumptions associated with the purification are reduced, part of the necessary energy is obtained from a renewable source and the operating costs decreases. It would be successful in sewage treatment plants in the dairy industry, beer industry, etc. Mainly, those that are characterized by high organic load. At KEIKEN we can carry out the project and execution of these plants.
Regarding the use of sewage sludge as a compost, the sludge provides the agricultural soil with various nutrients and necessary organic material. However, not all sewage sludge is suitable for use as agricultural compost. It is necessary that it be from industries free of pathogenic organisms, toxic and/or dangerous compositions.
The implementation of these technologies allows an improvement of the energy efficiency, reduction of the costs, reuse and valorization of the wastewater treatment. At KEIKEN we promote the implementation of the most advanced technologies in the market and, at the same time, we promote the use of Renewable Energy to reduce the Carbon Footprint of the industry plants.
The current plants should be reviewed, their performance analyzed, studied and, in case of not complying with the established specifications, to propose their replacement by more efficient technologies. KEIKEN can help with the study and implementation of them.