Special Issue "Sustainable Wastewater Treatments and Reuse"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Sustainability and Applications".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Francisco Pedrero Salcedo
Website SciProfiles
Guest Editor
Maestre-Valero, JF (reprint author), CEBAS CSIC, Campus Univ Espinardo,POB 164, Murcia 30100, Spain
Interests: irrigation, reclaimed water, sustainable agriculture, salinity, precision agriculture

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

There has been a decrease in water withdrawals over the past three decades due to population and industrial growth. The use of conventional waters is limited, and the cost of virtual water is too high and not affordable for most developing countries. Therefore, reclaimed water, as a non-conventional water resource, can help provide for a proportion of irrigation water and reduce pressure on conventional water resources.

Although reclaimed water is commonly and successfully used in many countries (e.g., Israel, USA, and Australia), in the EU, water reuse faces numerous barriers. Among them, safety risks, economic concerns, and social acceptance can be currently defined as the main barriers.

For that reason, the purpose of this special issue is to publish high-quality research articles as well as reviews that seek to address recent development on worldwide sustainable water treatment and reuse projects with the creation of a comprehensive database, identifying information and improving the user’s perception and indirectly increasing use of reclaimed water.

Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Potential benefits on wastewater treatment and reuse to users
  • Innovation in desalination and water reclamation.
  • Renewable energies for water reclamation and desalination.
  • Emerging technology for minimization and valorization of brine.
  • New tools for mapping on water reuse projects at regional scale.
  • Plant and soil field measurements on reclaimed water use in agriculture.
  • Best practices of water reuse for irrigation.
  • Industrial urban and environmental water reuse.
  • Crop response to reclaimed water use and added value of the crops.
  • Sustainable soil management under reclaimed water irrigation
  • Cost and benefits of alternative water resources.
  • Nutrients and fertilizers management using reclaimed water.
  • Socio-economic impact of water reuse.
  • Safety aspects of treated wastewater use.
  • Public perception of water reuse and governance regulations.

Prof. Francisco Pedrero
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

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. Sustainability 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

  • sustainability
  • best management practices
  • reclaimed water use
  • environment
  • precision agriculture
  • public perception
  • food security
  • socio-economic value

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Intervention Strategies on the Wastewater Treatment Behavior of Swine Farmers: An Extended Model of the Theory of Planned Behavior
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 6906; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12176906 - 25 Aug 2020
Abstract
Untreated swine wastewater pollutes rivers and harms the environment. The pollution can be minimized if swine farmers take wastewater treatment (WWT) action before the wastewater is discharged into rivers. Thus, the WWT behavior of swine farmers is key to environmental sustainability. However, WWT [...] Read more.
Untreated swine wastewater pollutes rivers and harms the environment. The pollution can be minimized if swine farmers take wastewater treatment (WWT) action before the wastewater is discharged into rivers. Thus, the WWT behavior of swine farmers is key to environmental sustainability. However, WWT behavior, characterized by high costs and inconvenience, has received little attention from previous studies. Due to the high cost, some intervention strategies are helpful in ensuring that farmers behave in a pro-environmental manner. Therefore, this study compares the effects of two intervention factors, i.e., environmental knowledge and perceived effectiveness of enforcement, on the WWT behavior of swine farmers in Taiwan. The comparisons and empirical tests are based on an extended model of the theory of planned behavior (TPB). The findings reveal that all three classic factors in the TPB, i.e., attitude, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control, had significant and positive effects on the intention of farmers to perform WWT behavior. Contradicting most previous studies, behavioral intentions did not have a significant effect on WWT behavior; however, perceived behavioral control did. The total effects of both intervention factors on WWT behavior were significant and positive. Moreover, the total effect of environmental knowledge was larger than that of the perceived effectiveness of enforcement. The findings suggest that a combination of the two strategies of increasing the environmental knowledge of individuals and enhancing the enforcement of environmental regulations will be helpful in inducing the sustained WWT behavior of farmers. Policy makers can allocate more resources to increasing farmers’ environmental knowledge than to enhancing the enforcement of environmental regulations. Finally, future research directions are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Wastewater Treatments and Reuse)
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Open AccessArticle
A Comprehensive Evaluation Method for Industrial Sewage Treatment Projects Based on the Improved Entropy-TOPSIS
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 6734; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12176734 - 20 Aug 2020
Abstract
Sewage treatment and reuse have always been hot issues in both the business and academic communities in all nations around the world. In order to solve the difficulties in accurate quantization and objective evaluation of industrial sewage treatment projects, this paper proposed a [...] Read more.
Sewage treatment and reuse have always been hot issues in both the business and academic communities in all nations around the world. In order to solve the difficulties in accurate quantization and objective evaluation of industrial sewage treatment projects, this paper proposed a comprehensive industrial sewage treatment project evaluation method based on the improved entropy–TOPSIS method. First, this paper constructed an evaluation indicator system for sewage treatment projects from the four aspects of environmental performance, economic performance, managerial performance and social performance. Second, it made a modification to the experts’ experience-based grading using the entropy weight method and determined the weight of the indicators in a more objective and more accurate manner. Third, this work improved the traditional TOPSIS method and simplified the calculations with regard to the traditional TOPSIS-based comprehensive evaluation. Finally, by taking the example of evaluating industrial sewage treatment projects of the China Water Affairs Group in Q city (ChongQing), China, this paper verified the feasibility and practicability of the proposed comprehensive industrial sewage treatment project evaluation system and method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Wastewater Treatments and Reuse)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Human Health, Economic and Environmental Assessment of Onsite Non-Potable Water Reuse Systems for a Large, Mixed-Use Urban Building
Sustainability 2020, 12(13), 5459; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12135459 - 07 Jul 2020
Abstract
Onsite non-potable reuse (NPR) is being increasingly considered as a viable option to address water scarcity and infrastructure challenges, particularly at the building scale. However, there are a range of possible treatment technologies, source water options, and treatment system sizes, each with its [...] Read more.
Onsite non-potable reuse (NPR) is being increasingly considered as a viable option to address water scarcity and infrastructure challenges, particularly at the building scale. However, there are a range of possible treatment technologies, source water options, and treatment system sizes, each with its unique costs and benefits. While demonstration projects are proving that these systems can be technologically feasible and protective of public health, little guidance exists for identifying systems that balance public health protection with environmental and economic performance. This study uses quantitative microbial risk assessment, life cycle assessment and life cycle cost analysis to characterize the human health, environmental and economic aspects of onsite NPR systems. Treatment trains for both mixed wastewater and source-separated graywater were modeled using a core biological process—an aerobic membrane bioreactor (AeMBR), an anaerobic membrane bioreactor (AnMBR) or recirculating vertical flow wetland (RVFW)—and additional treatment and disinfection unit processes sufficient to meet current health-based NPR guidelines. Results show that the graywater AeMBR system designed to provide 100% of onsite non-potable demand results in the lowest impacts across most environmental and human health metrics considered but costs more than the mixed-wastewater version due to the need for a separate collection system. The use of multiple metrics also allows for identification of weaknesses in systems that lead to burden shifting. For example, although the RVFW process requires less energy than the AeMBR process, the RVFW system is more environmentally impactful and costly when considering the additional unit processes required to protect human health. Similarly, we show that incorporation of thermal recovery units to reduce hot water energy consumption can offset some environmental impacts but result in increases to others, including cumulative energy demand. Results demonstrate the need for additional data on the pathogen treatment performance of NPR systems to inform NPR health guidance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Wastewater Treatments and Reuse)
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Open AccessArticle
Ecological Sanitation and Sustainable Nutrient Recovery Education: Considering the Three Fixes for Environmental Problem-Solving
Sustainability 2020, 12(9), 3587; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12093587 - 28 Apr 2020
Abstract
In the context of phosphorus as a finite resource and the unsustainable character of current sanitation in Europe, this paper examined social factors in a technological transition towards sustainable sanitation. The evaluation is based on the idea of cognitive, structural, and technological fixes [...] Read more.
In the context of phosphorus as a finite resource and the unsustainable character of current sanitation in Europe, this paper examined social factors in a technological transition towards sustainable sanitation. The evaluation is based on the idea of cognitive, structural, and technological fixes to achieve environmental protection. The cognitive fix has been evaluated through literature and a European-wide survey with universities that offer civil and environmental engineering programs. Contrary to an initial hypothesis, ecological sanitation and nutrient recycling are taught by the majority (66%) of responding programs. There are, however, local differences in terms of context and detail of the education. The main impediments for teaching were identified as academic resources (especially in Belgium, Germany and Denmark) and the technological status quo (Ireland, Italy, Spain and some programs of the United Kingdom). Instructors’ personal commitment and experience was evaluated to be a key factor for an extensive coverage of sustainable sanitation in higher education programs. The role of higher education has a critical role to play in changing sanitation practices, given the unique professional developmental stage of students and the potential for a cognitive fix to contribute to meaningful change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Wastewater Treatments and Reuse)
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