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Special Issue "Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Science and Engineering".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2018).

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Jason K. Levy

Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management, University of Hawaii, Kapolei, HI 96707, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: disaster risk governance; sustainable hazard mitigation; stochastic and statistical hydrology; sociohydrology; fluvial and marine disasters; global climate change, computational intelligence for water management; hydrologic resilience; process-based modeling of coupled human–water systems; inundation; economics of water resources management; drought

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue deals with the remediation and analysis of soil, air and water pollution. This issue is particularly urgent and important in the wake of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. For example, hundreds of US Gulf coast industrial facilities are emitting hazardous materials into the environment. At least 14 toxic waste sites were flooded or damaged, raising fears of waterborne contamination; nearly 100 spills of hazardous substances have been reported.

In particular, in the last week of August 2017 alone, 46 facilities in 13 Houston-area counties reported an estimated 4.6 million pounds of airborne emissions that exceeded state limits. In Texas, many plants in the hurricane’s path deliberately released extra pollutants into the air when they shut down in preparation for the storm, and again when they resumed operations. For example, a plastic plant southwest of Houston released over one million points of excess emissions including toxic gases like benzene, when it restarted after the storm.

In the context of this Special Issue, "remediation" refers to means to solve environmental problems. There are a wide variety of cutting edge "bio-remediation" approaches to use biological organisms to address contaminated soil or groundwater. Bioremediation works by providing pollution-eating organisms with fertilizer, oxygen, and other conditions that encourage their rapid growth. These organisms would then be able to break down the organic pollutant at a correspondingly faster rate. In fact, bioremediation is often used to help clean up oil spills. On the other hand, bioremediation may not provide a feasible strategy at sites with high concentrations of chemicals that are toxic to most microorganisms. These chemicals include metals such as cadmium or lead, and salts such as sodium chloride.

Prof. Dr. Jason K. Levy
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • remediation
  • contamination
  • soil, air and water pollution
  • environmental quality
  • human health
  • bioremediation

Published Papers (16 papers)

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Open AccessArticle
The Release of Antimony from Mine Dump Soils in the Presence and Absence of Forest Litter
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(12), 2631; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15122631
Received: 15 October 2018 / Revised: 15 November 2018 / Accepted: 21 November 2018 / Published: 24 November 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (3352 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
This study examined the changes in antimony (Sb) solubility in soils, using organic matter introduced with forest litter, in various moisture conditions. Soils containing 12.8–163 mg/kg Sb were taken from the top layers of dumps in former mining sites in the Sudetes, South-West [...] Read more.
This study examined the changes in antimony (Sb) solubility in soils, using organic matter introduced with forest litter, in various moisture conditions. Soils containing 12.8–163 mg/kg Sb were taken from the top layers of dumps in former mining sites in the Sudetes, South-West Poland. Soils were incubated for 90 days either in oxic or waterlogged conditions, with and without the addition of 50 g/kg of beech forest litter (FL). Water concentrations of Sb in some experimental treatments greatly exceeded the threshold values for good quality underground water and drinking water, and reached a maximum of 2.8 mg/L. The changes of Sb solubility caused by application of FL and prolonged waterlogging were, in various soils, highly divergent and in fact unpredictable based on the main soil properties. In some soils, the application of forest litter prompted the release of Sb from soil solid phase, while in the others it acted contradictorily. Soil waterlogging resulted, in most cases, in the increased release of Sb compared to oxic conditions, and this effect was enhanced by the addition of forest litter. However, in two soils the presence of forest litter counteracted the effects of waterlogging and diminished the quantities of released Sb. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Variation of the Bacterial Community in the Rhizoplane Iron Plaque of the Wetland Plant Typha latifolia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(12), 2610; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15122610
Received: 18 August 2018 / Revised: 15 November 2018 / Accepted: 16 November 2018 / Published: 22 November 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (5016 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The survival of wetland plants in iron, sulfur and heavy metals-rich mine tailing ponds has been commonly attributed to the iron plaque (IP) on the root surface that acts as a protective barrier. However, the contribution of bacteria potentially regulates the iron-sulfur cycle [...] Read more.
The survival of wetland plants in iron, sulfur and heavy metals-rich mine tailing ponds has been commonly attributed to the iron plaque (IP) on the root surface that acts as a protective barrier. However, the contribution of bacteria potentially regulates the iron-sulfur cycle and heavy metal exclusion at the root surface has not been studied in depth, particularly from a microbial ecology perspective. In this study, a pot experiment using Typha latifolia, a typical wetland plant, in non-polluted soil (NP) and tailing soil (T) was conducted. Samples from four zones, comprising non-rhizosphere soil (NR), rhizosphere soil (R) and internal (I) and external (E) layers of iron plaque, were collected from the NP and T and analyzed by 16S rRNA sequencing. Simpson index of the genus level showed greater diversities of bacterial community in the NP and its I zone is the most important part of the rhizosphere. PICRUSt predicted that the I zones in both NP and T harbored most of the functional genes. Specifically, functional genes related to sulfur relay and metabolism occurred more in the I zone in the T, whereas those related to iron acquisition and carbon and nitrogen circulation occurred more in the I zone in the NP. Analysis of dominant bacterial communities at genus level showed highest abundance of heavy metal resistant genus Burkholderia in the E zones in both soils, indicating that heavy metal resistance of Typha latifolia driven by Burkholderia mainly occurred at the external layer of IP. Moreover, many bacterial genera, such as Acidithiobacillus, Ferritrophicum, Thiomonas, Metallibacterium and Sideroxydans, involved in iron and sulfur metabolisms were found in the T and most showed higher abundance in the I zone than in the other zones. This work, as the first endeavor to separate the iron plaque into external and internal layers and investigate the variations of the bacterial communities therein, can provide an insight for further understanding the survival strategy of wetland plants, e.g., Typha latifolia, in extreme environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Degradation of Triclosan and Carbamazepine in Two Agricultural and Garden Soils with Different Textures Amended with Composted Sewage Sludge
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2557; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112557
Received: 8 October 2018 / Revised: 26 October 2018 / Accepted: 1 November 2018 / Published: 14 November 2018
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Abstract
Composted sewage sludge (CSS) has been extensively used in agriculture and landscaping, offering a practical solution for waste disposal. However, some pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs) like triclosan (TCS) and carbamazepine (CBZ) have restricted its land application. In this study, CSS was [...] Read more.
Composted sewage sludge (CSS) has been extensively used in agriculture and landscaping, offering a practical solution for waste disposal. However, some pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs) like triclosan (TCS) and carbamazepine (CBZ) have restricted its land application. In this study, CSS was added to agricultural soil and garden soil at 0%, 5%, 10%, and 25% (w/w soil), and 4 mL of TCS and CBZ stock solution (1000 mg/L in methanol) was spiked into soil amended with CSS of each bottle to arrive at the concentration of 10 mg/kg. Samples were then collected after incubation for 120 days and analyzed for concentrations and half-life (t1/2) of TCS and CBZ, and soil physicochemical properties, together with enzyme activities. The results showed that TCS was degraded completely during the incubation period. In contrast, only about 5.82–21.43% CBZ was degraded. CSS amendment inhibited TCS and CBZ degradation and prolonged t1/2 compared to the control, and the t1/2 of TCS and CBZ increased with CSS addition amount in all treatments except for CBZ in the garden soil amended with 10% CSS. Correlation studies showed a significantly positive relationship between t1/2 of TCS and CBZ and total organic carbon (TOC), while a significantly negative relationship between t1/2 of the two PPCPs and pH was observed. Alkaline phosphatase showed a significantly negative relationship with the Ct/C0 of TCS in garden soil amended with 25% CSS and CBZ in the control. The urease activity was negatively correlated with the Ct/C0 of TCS in 10% and 25% CSS treatments and CBZ in 10% CSS treatment for garden soil. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Earthworms, Rice Straw, and Plant Interactions Change the Organic Connections in Soil and Promote the Decontamination of Cadmium in Soil
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(11), 2398; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15112398
Received: 18 August 2018 / Revised: 16 September 2018 / Accepted: 21 September 2018 / Published: 29 October 2018
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1756 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The joint effects of earthworms and crop straw on toxic metal speciation are not clear, and very limited information is available regarding the effects of their interaction on Cd mobility in Cd contaminated soil or in remediation processes involving plants. This study evaluated [...] Read more.
The joint effects of earthworms and crop straw on toxic metal speciation are not clear, and very limited information is available regarding the effects of their interaction on Cd mobility in Cd contaminated soil or in remediation processes involving plants. This study evaluated their impacts on Cd mobile form changes in soil and their effects on Cd uptake by plants. Treatments included both planted and unplanted-Cd-contaminated soil with or without rice straw and/or earthworms. The results revealed that earthworms, rice straw, and plant interactions change the Cd mobile forms in soil. The order of Cd concentration of different chemical forms was as follows: exchangeable > residual > bound to Fe-Mn oxide > bound to organic matter for earthworms, and exchangeable > bound to organic matter > residual > bound to Fe-Mn oxide for rice straw treatment, with a recovery rate of 96 ± 3%. The accumulation of Cd in plants increased in the presence of earthworms and decreased in the presence of rice straw. FT-IR spectra indicated that the degradation of rice straw increases C–O, C–O–H, C–H, and O–H functional groups which could complex with Cd ions. These findings highlighted that earthworms’ activities and crop straw can modify soil properties and structure and promote the remediation of heavy metal. This study suggests that the ecological context of remediation instead of being limiting on soil-earthworms-plant interaction, should integrate the natural resources forsaken which can provide a positive influence on both plant health and the remediation of heavy metal in contaminated soil. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Silicon-Mediated Enhancement of Heavy Metal Tolerance in Rice at Different Growth Stages
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(10), 2193; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15102193
Received: 6 September 2018 / Revised: 30 September 2018 / Accepted: 2 October 2018 / Published: 8 October 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (5839 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Silicon (Si) plays important roles in alleviating heavy metal stress in rice plants. Here we investigated the physiological response of rice at different growth stages under the silicon-induced mitigation of cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) toxicity. Si treatment increased the dry weight of [...] Read more.
Silicon (Si) plays important roles in alleviating heavy metal stress in rice plants. Here we investigated the physiological response of rice at different growth stages under the silicon-induced mitigation of cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) toxicity. Si treatment increased the dry weight of shoots and roots and reduced the Cd and Zn concentrations in roots, stems, leaves and grains. Under the stress of exposure to Cd and Zn, photosynthetic parameters including the chlorophyll content and chlorophyll fluorescence decreased, while the membrane permeability and malondialdehyde (MDA) increased. Catalase (CAT) and peroxidase (POD) activities increased under heavy metals stress, but superoxide dismutase (SOD) activities decreased. The magnitude of these Cd- and Zn-induced changes was mitigated by Si-addition at different growth stages. The available Cd concentration increased in the soil but significantly decreased in the shoots, which suggested that Si treatment prevents Cd accumulation through internal mechanisms by limiting Cd2+ uptake by the roots. Overall, the phenomena of Si-mediated alleviation of Cd and excess Zn toxicity in two rice cultivars could be due to the limitation of metal uptake and transport, resulting in an improvement in cell membrane integrity, photosynthetic performance and anti-oxidative enzyme activities after Si treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Ascorbate-Glutathione Cycle and Ultrastructural Analyses of Two Kenaf Cultivars (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) under Chromium Stress
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1467; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071467
Received: 20 June 2018 / Revised: 7 July 2018 / Accepted: 7 July 2018 / Published: 11 July 2018
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Abstract
Kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) with high tolerance to chromium (Cr) can be used in the phytoremediation of chromium-contaminated soil. However, the mechanisms of chromium accumulation and tolerance in kenaf are still unclear. A hydroponic experiment was taken to screen two kenaf cultivars [...] Read more.
Kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) with high tolerance to chromium (Cr) can be used in the phytoremediation of chromium-contaminated soil. However, the mechanisms of chromium accumulation and tolerance in kenaf are still unclear. A hydroponic experiment was taken to screen two kenaf cultivars with Cr tolerance among nine kenaf cultivars via a tolerance index. This is first time the ascorbate-glutathione (AsA-GSH) cycle and chloroplast structural changes involved in Cr tolerance of two kenaf cultivars are explored. This study indicated that enhancement of chromium concentrations reduced nine kenaf growth rates and plant biomass. In addition, in all the nine cultivars, the roots had higher Cr accumulation than the shoots. Cr-tolerant cultivar Zhe70-3 with the maximum tolerant index had the significantly higher enzymatic activities of ascorbate peroxidase (APX), glutathione reductase (GR), dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR) and mono- dehydroascorbate reductase (MDHAR) in non-enzymatic antioxidant system compared to Cr-sensitive cultivar Zhe77-1. In addition, higher GSH and AsA contents and lower damages of chloroplast ultrastructure were observed in Zhe70-3 under Cr treatment. In conclusion, Cr stress can cause less oxidative stress and destruction of chloroplast ultrastructure in Cr-tolerant cultivar Zhe70-3, and the AsA-GSH cycle may play a crucial role in kenaf Cr tolerance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Characterizing the Interaction between Antibiotics and Humic Acid by Fluorescence Quenching Method
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1458; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071458
Received: 5 June 2018 / Revised: 22 June 2018 / Accepted: 5 July 2018 / Published: 10 July 2018
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (3697 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The method of Three-Dimensional Excitation Emission Matrix Fluorescence Spectrophotometer was used to identify the interaction mechanism between humic acid (HA) and antibiotics. The effects of antibiotic concentration, temperature, and pH on the bonding strength between HA and antibiotics were investigated. The results showed [...] Read more.
The method of Three-Dimensional Excitation Emission Matrix Fluorescence Spectrophotometer was used to identify the interaction mechanism between humic acid (HA) and antibiotics. The effects of antibiotic concentration, temperature, and pH on the bonding strength between HA and antibiotics were investigated. The results showed that with the increase of antibiotics concentration, the quenching effect on HA was enhanced. The quenching of HA by both oxytetracycline (OTC) and sulfadiazine (SD) is a single static quenching of the complexes, and the interaction forces are mainly a hydrogen bond and the van der Waals force. The quenching constant KsvOTC > KsvSD and the binding constant KbOTC > KbSD, indicates that HA has a more obvious quenching effect on OTC. The Kb of HA by OTC ranged from 3.223 × 103 to 12.784 × 103 L·mol−1 in the range of 298 K to 313 K, while the Kb of HA by SD ranged from 2.051 × 103 to 5.533 × 103 L·mol−1. With the increase of temperature, the quenching constant Ksv and binding constant Kb of both OTC and SD by HA gradually decrease, and the low temperature is beneficial to the interaction. The composite of OTC and HA is more stable than SD. Under neutral alkaline conditions, both OTC and SD had the strongest quenching effect on HA, and the resulting complex was the most stable. However, the Ksv and Kb of HA by OTC were greater than SD in the pH range of the experiment and the pH effect on quenching of HA by OTC (Ksv) was greater than that of SD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Source Identification and Apportionment of Trace Elements in Soils in the Yangtze River Delta, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(6), 1240; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15061240
Received: 20 May 2018 / Revised: 9 June 2018 / Accepted: 9 June 2018 / Published: 12 June 2018
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (5697 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Trace elements pollution has attracted a lot of attention worldwide. However, it is difficult to identify and apportion the sources of multiple element pollutants over large areas because of the considerable spatial complexity and variability in the distribution of trace elements in soil. [...] Read more.
Trace elements pollution has attracted a lot of attention worldwide. However, it is difficult to identify and apportion the sources of multiple element pollutants over large areas because of the considerable spatial complexity and variability in the distribution of trace elements in soil. In this study, we collected total of 2051 topsoil (0–20 cm) samples, and analyzed the general pollution status of soils from the Yangtze River Delta, Southeast China. We applied principal component analysis (PCA), a finite mixture distribution model (FMDM), and geostatistical tools to identify and quantitatively apportion the sources of seven kinds of trace elements (chromium (Cr), cadmium (Cd), mercury (Hg), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), nickel (Ni), and arsenic (As)) in soil. The PCA results indicated that the trace elements in soil in the study area were mainly from natural, multi-pollutant and industrial sources. The FMDM also fitted three sub log-normal distributions. The results from the two models were quite similar: Cr, As, and Ni were mainly from natural sources caused by parent material weathering; Cd, Cu, and Zu were mainly from mixed sources, with a considerable portion from anthropogenic activities such as traffic pollutants, domestic garbage, and agricultural inputs, and Hg was mainly from industrial wastes and pollutants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Adsorption Performance Analysis of Alternative Reactive Media for Remediation of Aquifers Affected by Heavy Metal Contamination
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(5), 980; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15050980
Received: 10 March 2018 / Revised: 8 May 2018 / Accepted: 10 May 2018 / Published: 14 May 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1437 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
A series of experimental batch tests has been carried out with the aim of improving the knowledge of fundamental processes related to the fate and behavior of heavy metals that can be of environmental concern in groundwater. The analysis of contaminants (i.e., Cu, [...] Read more.
A series of experimental batch tests has been carried out with the aim of improving the knowledge of fundamental processes related to the fate and behavior of heavy metals that can be of environmental concern in groundwater. The analysis of contaminants (i.e., Cu, Zn, Cd and Pb) dynamics in different environmental compartments is specifically addressed by comparing the removal efficiencies of different types of reactive materials, three natural (i.e., vegetal fibers, natural limestone and natural zeolite) and one synthetic (i.e., synthetic zeolite). Results stemming from these reactive media has been compared with the outcomes related to the same test performed using zero valent iron which is the reactant usually employed for heavy metals remediation. All tested reactants exhibited important removal percentages, even larger than 90% in most cases, achieved in a contact time ranging between about 12 h and slightly longer than a day (i.e., 30 h). Maximum adsorption percentages are observed for pH ranging between 4 and 8 for all tested materials and contaminants. Our findings provided relevant evidence, to both researchers and technicians, on the competitiveness of the explored alternative mediums with respect to the classical reactants usually employed for heavy metals remediation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Biocapture of CO2 by Different Microalgal-Based Technologies for Biogas Upgrading and Simultaneous Biogas Slurry Purification under Various Light Intensities and Photoperiods
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(3), 528; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15030528
Received: 24 January 2018 / Revised: 13 March 2018 / Accepted: 13 March 2018 / Published: 15 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1864 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Co-cultivation of microalgae and microbes for pollutant removal from sewage is considered as an effective wastewater treatment method. The aim of this study is to screen the optimal photoperiod, light intensity and microalgae co-cultivation method for simultaneously removing nutrients in biogas slurry and [...] Read more.
Co-cultivation of microalgae and microbes for pollutant removal from sewage is considered as an effective wastewater treatment method. The aim of this study is to screen the optimal photoperiod, light intensity and microalgae co-cultivation method for simultaneously removing nutrients in biogas slurry and capturing CO2 in biogas. The microalgae–fungi pellets are deemed to be a viable option because of their high specific growth rate and nutrient and CO2 removal efficiency under the photoperiod of 14 h light:10 h dark. The order of both the biogas slurry purification and biogas upgrading is ranked the same, that is Chlorella vulgarisGanoderma lucidum > Chlorella vulgaris–activated sludge > Chlorella vulgaris under different light intensities. For all cultivation methods, the moderate light intensity of 450 μmol m−2 s−1 is regarded as the best choice. This research revealed that the control of photoperiod and light intensity can promote the biological treatment process of biogas slurry purification and biogas upgrading using microalgal-based technology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Aerobic Biodegradation Characteristic of Different Water-Soluble Azo Dyes
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(1), 35; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15010035
Received: 10 November 2017 / Revised: 17 December 2017 / Accepted: 20 December 2017 / Published: 26 December 2017
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Abstract
This study investigated the biodegradation performance and characteristics of Sudan I and Acid Orange 7 (AO7) to improve the biological dye removal efficiency in wastewater and optimize the treatment process. The dyes with different water-solubility and similar molecular structure were biologically treated under [...] Read more.
This study investigated the biodegradation performance and characteristics of Sudan I and Acid Orange 7 (AO7) to improve the biological dye removal efficiency in wastewater and optimize the treatment process. The dyes with different water-solubility and similar molecular structure were biologically treated under aerobic condition in parallel continuous-flow mixed stirred reactors. The biophase analysis using microscopic examination suggested that the removal process of the two azo dyes is different. Removal of Sudan I was through biosorption, since it easily assembled and adsorbed on the surface of zoogloea due to its insolubility, while AO7 was biodegraded incompletely and bioconverted, the AO7 molecule was decomposed to benzene series and inorganic ions, since it could reach the interior area of zoogloea due to the low oxidation-reduction potential conditions and corresponding anaerobic microorganisms. The transformation of NH3-N, SO42− together with the presence of tryptophan-like components confirm that AO7 can be decomposed to non-toxic products in an aerobic bioreactor. This study provides a theoretical basis for the use of biosorption or biodegradation mechanisms for the treatment of different azo dyes in wastewater. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Spatiotemporal Variations and Driving Factors of Air Pollution in China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1538; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14121538
Received: 24 October 2017 / Revised: 4 December 2017 / Accepted: 5 December 2017 / Published: 8 December 2017
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (28045 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In recent years, severe and persistent air pollution episodes in China have drawn wide public concern. Based on ground monitoring air quality data collected in 2015 in Chinese cities above the prefectural level, this study identifies the spatiotemporal variations of air pollution and [...] Read more.
In recent years, severe and persistent air pollution episodes in China have drawn wide public concern. Based on ground monitoring air quality data collected in 2015 in Chinese cities above the prefectural level, this study identifies the spatiotemporal variations of air pollution and its associated driving factors in China using descriptive statistics and geographical detector methods. The results show that the average air pollution ratio and continuous air pollution ratio across Chinese cities in 2015 were 23.1 ± 16.9% and 16.2 ± 14.8%. The highest levels of air pollution ratio and continuous air pollution ratio were observed in northern China, especially in the Bohai Rim region and Xinjiang province, and the lowest levels were found in southern China. The average and maximum levels of continuous air pollution show distinct spatial variations when compared with those of the continuous air pollution ratio. Monthly changes in both air pollution ratio and continuous air pollution ratio have a U-shaped variation, indicating that the highest levels of air pollution occurred in winter and the lowest levels happened in summer. The results of the geographical detector model further reveal that the effect intensity of natural factors on the spatial disparity of the air pollution ratio is greater than that of human-related factors. Specifically, among natural factors, the annual average temperature, land relief, and relative humidity have the greatest and most significant negative effects on the air pollution ratio, whereas human factors such as population density, the number of vehicles, and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) witness the strongest and most significant positive effects on air pollution ratio. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
OMI and Ground-Based In-Situ Tropospheric Nitrogen Dioxide Observations over Several Important European Cities during 2005–2014
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(11), 1415; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14111415
Received: 21 September 2017 / Revised: 8 November 2017 / Accepted: 8 November 2017 / Published: 20 November 2017
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Abstract
In this work we present the evolution of tropospheric nitrogen dioxide (NO2) content over several important European cities during 2005–2014 using space observations and ground-based in-situ measurements. The NO2 content was derived using the daily observations provided by the Ozone [...] Read more.
In this work we present the evolution of tropospheric nitrogen dioxide (NO2) content over several important European cities during 2005–2014 using space observations and ground-based in-situ measurements. The NO2 content was derived using the daily observations provided by the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI), while the NO2 volume mixing ratio measurements were obtained from the European Environment Agency (EEA) air quality monitoring stations database. The European cities selected are: Athens (37.98° N, 23.72° E), Berlin (52.51° N, 13.41° E), Bucharest (44.43° N, 26.10° E), Madrid (40.38° N, 3.71° W), Lisbon (38.71° N, 9.13° W), Paris (48.85° N, 2.35° E), Rome (41.9° N, 12.50° E), and Rotterdam (51.91° N, 4.46° E). We show that OMI NO2 tropospheric column data can be used to assess the evolution of NO2 over important European cities. According to the statistical analysis, using the seasonal variation, we found good correlations (R > 0.50) between OMI and ground-based in-situ observations for all of the cities presented in this work. Highest correlation coefficients (R > 0.80) between ground-based monitoring stations and OMI observations were calculated for the cities of Berlin, Madrid, and Rome. Both types of observations, in-situ and remote sensing, show an NO2 negative trend for all of locations presented in this study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessArticle
Occurrences of Organochlorine Pesticides along the Course of the Buffalo River in the Eastern Cape of South Africa and Its Health Implications
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(11), 1372; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14111372
Received: 22 September 2017 / Revised: 6 November 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 10 November 2017
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1031 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Most organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) which are increasingly used in agriculture and industry are not biodegradable and thereby persist in the environment for a very long period of time. They are capable of negatively impacting the health of humans and biota when present in [...] Read more.
Most organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) which are increasingly used in agriculture and industry are not biodegradable and thereby persist in the environment for a very long period of time. They are capable of negatively impacting the health of humans and biota when present in a higher concentration than recommended. This study evaluated the concentrations of 17 OCPs in surface water samples collected from six sampling sites along the course of the Buffalo River in Eastern Cape, South Africa, between December 2015 and May 2016. The samples were subjected to solvent extraction, followed by florisil clean up, and analyzed using gas chromatography coupled with an electron capture detector. The individual concentrations of OCPs detected ranged from <LOD to 4403 ng/L in summer and <LOD to 313 ng/L in autumn. The levels of OCPs in the study area were generally above the United State Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) limit of 100 ng/L in all the sampling locations in the two seasons. The cancer risk assessment values were below the permissible limit of the 10−6 level, although the life average daily dose were slightly above the USEPA maximum limits of 10−4. Therefore, there is a need for the adequate regulation of agrochemical storage, use, and disposal in this province and other parts of South Africa. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessReview
Heavy Metal and Metalloid Pollution of Soil, Water and Foods in Bangladesh: A Critical Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(12), 2825; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15122825
Received: 12 October 2018 / Revised: 30 November 2018 / Accepted: 7 December 2018 / Published: 11 December 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1015 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Bangladesh is a densely populated developing country. Both industrialization and geological sources have caused widespread heavy metal and metalloid pollution in Bangladesh, which is now posing substantial threats to the local people. In this review, we carried out one of the most exhaustive [...] Read more.
Bangladesh is a densely populated developing country. Both industrialization and geological sources have caused widespread heavy metal and metalloid pollution in Bangladesh, which is now posing substantial threats to the local people. In this review, we carried out one of the most exhaustive literature analyses on the current status of Bangladesh heavy metal and metalloid pollution, covering water, soil, and foods. Analysis showed that soils near high traffic and industrial areas contain high concentrations of heavy metals and metalloids. Agricultural land and vegetables in sewage-irrigated areas were also found to be heavy metal- and metalloid-contaminated. River water, sediment, and fish from the Buriganga, Turag, Shitalakhya, and Karnaphuli rivers are highly contaminated with cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), and chromium (Cr). Particularly, groundwater arsenic (As) pollution associated with high geological background levels in Bangladesh is well reported and is hitherto the largest mass poisoning in the world. Overall, the contamination levels of heavy metals and metalloids vary among the cities, with industrial areas being most polluted. In all, this review provides a quantitative identification of the As, Pb, Cd, and Cr contamination hotspots in Bangladesh based on the literature, which may be useful to environmental restorationists and local policy makers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Open AccessReview
Microbial and Plant-Assisted Bioremediation of Heavy Metal Polluted Environments: A Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(12), 1504; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14121504
Received: 15 September 2017 / Revised: 27 November 2017 / Accepted: 30 November 2017 / Published: 4 December 2017
Cited by 34 | PDF Full-text (1887 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Environmental pollution from hazardous waste materials, organic pollutants and heavy metals, has adversely affected the natural ecosystem to the detriment of man. These pollutants arise from anthropogenic sources as well as natural disasters such as hurricanes and volcanic eruptions. Toxic metals could accumulate [...] Read more.
Environmental pollution from hazardous waste materials, organic pollutants and heavy metals, has adversely affected the natural ecosystem to the detriment of man. These pollutants arise from anthropogenic sources as well as natural disasters such as hurricanes and volcanic eruptions. Toxic metals could accumulate in agricultural soils and get into the food chain, thereby becoming a major threat to food security. Conventional and physical methods are expensive and not effective in areas with low metal toxicity. Bioremediation is therefore an eco-friendly and efficient method of reclaiming environments contaminated with heavy metals by making use of the inherent biological mechanisms of microorganisms and plants to eradicate hazardous contaminants. This review discusses the toxic effects of heavy metal pollution and the mechanisms used by microbes and plants for environmental remediation. It also emphasized the importance of modern biotechnological techniques and approaches in improving the ability of microbial enzymes to effectively degrade heavy metals at a faster rate, highlighting recent advances in microbial bioremediation and phytoremediation for the removal of heavy metals from the environment as well as future prospects and limitations. However, strict adherence to biosafety regulations must be followed in the use of biotechnological methods to ensure safety of the environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remediation and Analysis of Soil, Air, and Water Pollution)
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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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