Sustainable Water Management and Treatment

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water Quality and Contamination".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2024) | Viewed by 8980

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Department of Environmental Engineering and Management, Gheorghe Asachi Technical University of Iasi, Iasi, Romania
Interests: environmental health and safety; impact and risk assessment; environmental quality monitoring and sustainable management
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Sustainable water resource management still attracts interest at the international level, even though there are clear regulations, policies, and strategies for water quality protection. Moreover, the Sustainable Strategy Horizon 2030 defines, among other sustainable goals, the goal to “ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”, with targets concerning water quality, water-use efficiency, and water resources management that should be achieved. Priority inorganic and organic pollutants may significantly influence ecosystems and human health, even in small amounts or traces. Thus, sustainable withdrawals, supply of fresh water, and integrated water resources management at all levels, including transboundary cooperation, are highly envisaged.

On the other hand, water quality monitoring and pollution prevention should be current practices at the global level so that the good status of water resources can be ensured. Water pollution control and advanced treatment technologies should be addressed at effluent discharges of inorganic and organic compounds that should be a priority and emerging pollutants classes such as pharmaceuticals and personal care products, pesticides, heavy metals, and detergents that may influence aquatic biota and the performance and costs of water and wastewater treatment plants.

Based on these aspects, papers, reviews, and research are invited to be published in this issue, offering the opportunity to create an international scientific impact and address new research questions and future approaches and collaborations.

Dr. Brindusa Sluser
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • water quality
  • pollution monitoring and treatment
  • sustainable water resources management, impact, and risk assessment

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

18 pages, 6153 KiB  
Article
Study of Spirulina platensis (Arthrospira) Development under the Heavy Metals Influence, as a Potential Promoter of Wastewater Remediation
by Mariana Diaconu, Gabriela Soreanu, Catalin Dumitrel Balan, Ingrid Ioana Buciscanu, Vasilica Maier and Igor Cretescu
Water 2023, 15(22), 3962; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15223962 - 15 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1131
Abstract
Aquatic ecosystems polluted by heavy metals can affect microalgae growth when their concentrations overcome certain limits, depending on each involved heavy metal species. Yet, for heavy metal concentrations in the low range, microalgae exhibit metal tolerance and can accumulate a diversity of metal [...] Read more.
Aquatic ecosystems polluted by heavy metals can affect microalgae growth when their concentrations overcome certain limits, depending on each involved heavy metal species. Yet, for heavy metal concentrations in the low range, microalgae exhibit metal tolerance and can accumulate a diversity of metal species from aqueous media. In particular, Spirulina platensis proved biosorption ability for heavy metals like Zn, Cd, Pb, or Cr, which can make it useful for the bioremediation of aquatic media polluted with heavy metals. This prokaryotic cyanobacteria from the microalgae species, which has a high protein, carbohydrate, and fats content, can interact with heavy metals through biosorption/bioaccumulation, leading to changes in the biomass yield, growth rate, and implicitly, biomass composition. This paper aims to investigate the influence of some heavy metal ions on the development and metabolic processes occurring in the cyanobacteria S. platensis, in order to establish its limitations in heavy metal bioremediation. In this regard, submerged cultures of S. platensis, involving standardized culture medium (Zarrouk), in the presence of nickel, cadmium, and lead ions in different concentrations (0.5 mg/L, 1.0 mg/L, and 1.5 mg/L, were considered. The cultivation of the microalgae was carried out for 28 days, with the determination of cell mass growth, dry biomass, protein accumulation, cell viability, and pH of the culture media, at certain time intervals (0, 3, 7, 13, 18, 24, and 28 days). Spirulina cultures were affected by the metal ions in different degrees, depending both on the type of metal ion and its concentration. The most toxic for cell growth and biomass accumulation were nickel and cadmium ions, at concentrations of 1.0 mg/L, and 1.5 mg/L, respectively. Cadmium, regardless of concentration, caused a decrease in dry biomass weight throughout the microalgae cultivation period. Instead, lead exhibited the lowest effect on the viability and integrity of spirulina cells, regardless of the concentration in which it was used. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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15 pages, 2854 KiB  
Article
Nitrate Uptake by Cellulose-Based Anion Exchange Polymers Derived from Wheat Straw
by Sarah E. Jones, Yifan Ding, David A. Sabatini and Elizabeth C. Butler
Water 2023, 15(20), 3594; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15203594 - 14 Oct 2023
Viewed by 895
Abstract
Nitrate contamination of ground water is a serious problem due to the intensive agricultural activities needed to feed the world’s growing population. While effective, drinking water treatment using commercial ion exchange polymers is often too expensive to be employed. At the same time, [...] Read more.
Nitrate contamination of ground water is a serious problem due to the intensive agricultural activities needed to feed the world’s growing population. While effective, drinking water treatment using commercial ion exchange polymers is often too expensive to be employed. At the same time, lignocellulosic waste from crop production—an abundant source of the renewable polymer cellulose—is often burned to clear fields. This results in not only adverse health outcomes, but also wastes a valuable resource. In this study, wheat straw was pretreated to extract cellulose, then selectively oxidized with periodate, crosslinked with an alkyl diamine (1,7-diaminoheptane or 1,10-diaminodecane), and functionalized with a quaternary ammonium compound ((2-aminoethyl)trimethyl ammonium chloride) to generate a cellulose-based anion exchange polymer. This polymer lowered aqueous nitrate concentrations to health-based drinking water standards. Unlike commercial ion exchange polymers, its synthesis did not require the use of toxic epichlorohydrin or flammable solvents. The pretreatment conditions did not significantly affect nitrate uptake, but the crosslinker chain length did, with polymers crosslinked with 1,10-diaminodecane showing no nitrate uptake. Agricultural-waste-based anion exchange polymers could accelerate progress toward the sustainable development goals by providing low-cost materials for nitrate removal from water. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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27 pages, 9395 KiB  
Article
Stormwater Uptake in Sponge-Like Porous Bodies Surrounded by a Pond: A Fluid Mechanics Analysis
by Ana Barcot, Hans O. Åkerstedt, I. A. Sofia Larsson and T. Staffan Lundström
Water 2023, 15(18), 3209; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15183209 - 08 Sep 2023
Viewed by 745
Abstract
In this work, a previously published model for the water up take of stormwater in sponge-like porous bodies by the group is further developed. This is done by investigating the highest-performing model and considering the water uptake from the surroundings of a pond [...] Read more.
In this work, a previously published model for the water up take of stormwater in sponge-like porous bodies by the group is further developed. This is done by investigating the highest-performing model and considering the water uptake from the surroundings of a pond and rain-infiltrated soil. This implies that water uptake from impermeable to partially permeable surfaces is examined. Hence, the following cases are considered: (1) impervious bottom surface and no precipitation, (2) impervious bottom surface with precipitation, (3) permeable soil with no precipitation, and (4) permeable soil with precipitation. A mathematical model covering all these cases is presented, where the governing equations are the mass conservation and Darcy’s law together with an assumption of a sharp wetting front being a first-order approximation of the complete Richard’s equation. Results for the water uptake height, pond depth, and wetting front are computed numerically and plotted against time. Analytical solutions are also presented in certain cases, and critical values are obtained. The parametric study includes variations in the ratio of the model- to the surrounding ground surface area, initial pond depth, precipitation, and soil characteristics. To exemplify, the time it takes to absorb the water from the pond after a precipitation period is presented. The results are related to the Swedish rainfall data of 1 h duration with a return period of 10 years. When evaluating efficiency, the focus is on the absorption time. Results vary considerably, demonstrating a general trend that with soil infiltration, the water absorption rate is higher. For most cases, the considered water amount is absorbed completely, although depending on the parameters and conditions. These results serve to optimize the model for each of the cases. The main focus of the research lies in the theoretical aspect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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23 pages, 9383 KiB  
Article
Research on Soil Nitrogen Balance Mechanism and Optimal Water and Nitrogen Management Model for Crop Rotation of Vegetables in Facilities
by Xing Gan, Shiyu Sun, Haiyan Fan, Honglu Liu, Juan Zhang and Zijun Ding
Water 2023, 15(16), 2878; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15162878 - 09 Aug 2023
Viewed by 868
Abstract
Vegetable production is an important area of focus in China’s agricultural structural adjustment plans, and it serves as one of the essential industries in the rural economy. Several studies have investigated how to optimize vegetable yield and quality through proper irrigation and fertilization [...] Read more.
Vegetable production is an important area of focus in China’s agricultural structural adjustment plans, and it serves as one of the essential industries in the rural economy. Several studies have investigated how to optimize vegetable yield and quality through proper irrigation and fertilization to ensure efficient and sustainable development. The main objective of this paper is to examine the impact of different combinations of irrigation and nitrogen inputs on facility-grown vegetables under irrigation and fertilization conditions. Additionally, we aim to identify the optimal irrigation and fertilization regime that can enhance yield quality while also promoting environmental benefits. In this study, we focused on a white radish–tomato facility as the main research object. Using multiple regression and spatial analysis methods, we established three irrigation levels (W1: 100% ET0, W2: 85% ET0, W3: 70% ET0) and four nitrogen application levels (N0: no nitrogen, N1: high nitrogen, locally recommended nitrogen, N2: medium nitrogen, 85% N1, N3: low nitrogen, 70% ET0). We analyzed the effects of an irrigation nitrogen application on vegetable yield, nitrogen bias productivity, soil nitrogen surplus, and integrated N1 warming potential. Our experimental results showed that irrigation volume and nitrogen application had a considerable impact on the yield of facility-grown vegetables, and there was a positive correlation between irrigation water and fertilizer application and yield. By moderately reducing the irrigation volume and increasing nitrogen application, soil nitrogen surplus and nitrogen fertilizer bias productivity can be effectively improved. In addition, our study found that the integrated warming potential and the bias productivity of nitrogen fertilizer showed a quadratic relationship, which indicated that the integrated warming potential and nitrogen fertilizer bias productivity would first become larger and then decrease under the condition of increasing the irrigation volume and nitrogen application rate. By analyzing the difference between W2N2 and W1N1, we found that moderate water-saving and nitrogen reduction did not affect yield. Furthermore, it effectively improved the bias productivity of nitrogen fertilizer. Therefore, it is recommended that when the irrigation volume is between 560 and 650 mm and the nitrogen application rate is between 325 and 400 kg/hm2 and more than 90% of the maximum value of yield, nitrogen fertilizer bias productivity can be achieved at the same time while also having a lower integrated warming potential. This range of irrigation and nitrogen application intervals is close to optimal. Our study provides a guiding basis for rotational soil nitrogen balance, optimal water, and nitrogen management of facility-grown vegetables. We propose an optimal water and nitrogen management strategy that is more efficient and sustainable under the plant culture model. This strategy provides a new way of thinking and methodology for high-quality production that is water-saving and fertilizer-saving while addressing the water and soil resource problems that exist in the current development of the vegetable industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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17 pages, 2908 KiB  
Article
Effect of Climate Change and Human Activities on Surface and Ground Water Quality in Major Cities of Pakistan
by Hira Zeb, Asim Yaqub, Huma Ajab, Iftikhar Zeb and Imran Khan
Water 2023, 15(15), 2693; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15152693 - 26 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1671
Abstract
In this study, climate change and human impacts on water quality in five major urban areas of Pakistan, including Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, Abbottabad, and Gilgit, were determined. Secondary data on various physical, chemical, and bacteriological water quality parameters were taken from published papers, [...] Read more.
In this study, climate change and human impacts on water quality in five major urban areas of Pakistan, including Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, Abbottabad, and Gilgit, were determined. Secondary data on various physical, chemical, and bacteriological water quality parameters were taken from published papers, reports, and theses. Surface and groundwater were the major sources of drinking water in these cities. The physicochemical parameters were total turbidity, pH, dissolved solids (TDS), sulphates, chlorides, calcium, sodium, HCO3, potassium, magnesium, nitrates, fluorides, arsenic, and hardness. The bacteriological parameters were total coliform, total faecal coliform, and total plate counts. The data revealed that pH, TDS, fluoride, chloride, HCO3, sodium, and hardness were above the limits in Karachi. MCB Market, Goth Ibrahim, and Malir Town were the main contaminated areas in Karachi. In Lahore, arsenic was found above the limits in all sampling locations. Turbidity, pH, HCO3, calcium, magnesium, and hardness were found above the limits in Peshawar. In Gilgit city, all physicochemical parameters were found within the limits except turbidity, which was 10 NTU in Nomal valley. Nitrates were higher in the water sources in Abbottabad. Bacterial contamination was found in the water of all five cities. Most of the studies revealed that this contamination could be human-induced. The improper disposal of solid waste, sewage, and animal waste and the excessive use of fertilisers deteriorate the quality of the water. Precipitation, a rise in temperature, and seasonal variation are climate variables that affect water quality and are responsible for major outbreaks of waterborne diseases. There is an urgent need for regular analysis, proper management, and proper treatment of drinking water before it is supplied to the local community in these cities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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14 pages, 2758 KiB  
Article
Colored Wastewater Treatment by Clathrate Hydrate Technique
by Mustafa S. Mohammed, Shurooq T. Al-Humairi, Riyadh S. Al-Mukhtar, Saja Mohsen Alardhi, Auwal Aliyu, Ali Dawood Salman, Miklós Jakab, Forat Yasir AlJaberi, Brindusa Sluser and Igor Cretescu
Water 2023, 15(12), 2227; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15122227 - 13 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1322
Abstract
Numerous recent studies have shown that discharging colored wastewater into the environment causes contamination, which has adverse impact due to textile, dyeing, and food industries. The current study presents experimental research on the clathrate hydrate technique used for producing pure water from of [...] Read more.
Numerous recent studies have shown that discharging colored wastewater into the environment causes contamination, which has adverse impact due to textile, dyeing, and food industries. The current study presents experimental research on the clathrate hydrate technique used for producing pure water from of wastewater contaminated by dyes. Under constant starting conditions, the clathrate formation for binary (water + refrigerant gas) and ternary (water + refrigerant gas + promotor) systems were studied. The R134a gas was used along with Cyclohexane (2.5 vol%), Tween 80 (100 ppm), and silica gel powder as promotors (100 ppm). Moreover, povidone-iodine (500, 2500, and 5000 ppm) and potassium permanganate (10, 50, and 100 ppm) were used as colored compounds in order to prepare synthetic wastewater (model wastewater). The production of hydrates, which rapidly captured the refrigerant gas molecules in the solid phase, was primarily responsible for the pressure drop. Both povidone-iodine and potassium permanganate have a negligible impact on the hydrate formation rates. It was found that the concentration of povidone-iodine and potassium permanganate in the produced water was decreased. As far as we know, the method of using clathrate hydrate to remove the dyes in water has never been investigated. The results showed that the povidone-iodine removal efficiency ranged between 86% and 92%, and the potassium permanganate removal efficiency ranged between 90% and 95%. The removal efficiency was improved by adding promotors, which increased the dissolved gas quantity and the amount of water hydrates. The maximum removal efficiency was accomplished using silica gel powder and cyclohexane, which are more significant than in pure water and Tween 80. This study demonstrated the viability of the clathrate hydrate technique as a green technology for the treatment of colored wastewater effluents from different industries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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16 pages, 6482 KiB  
Article
Data Conditioning Modes for the Study of Groundwater Resource Quality Using a Large Physico-Chemical and Bacteriological Database, Occitanie Region, France
by Meryem Jabrane, Abdessamad Touiouine, Abdelhak Bouabdli, Saïd Chakiri, Ismail Mohsine, Vincent Valles and Laurent Barbiero
Water 2023, 15(1), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15010084 - 26 Dec 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1507
Abstract
When studying large multiparametric databases with very heterogeneous parameters (microbiological, chemical, and physicochemical), covering a wide and heterogeneous area, the probability of observing extreme values (Z-score > 2.5) is high. The information carried by these few samples monopolizes a large part of the [...] Read more.
When studying large multiparametric databases with very heterogeneous parameters (microbiological, chemical, and physicochemical), covering a wide and heterogeneous area, the probability of observing extreme values (Z-score > 2.5) is high. The information carried by these few samples monopolizes a large part of the information conveyed by the entire database. The study of the spatial structure of the data and the identification of the mechanisms responsible for the water quality are then strongly degraded. Data transformation can be proposed to overcome these problems. This study deals with a database of 8110 groundwater analyses (Occitanie region, France), on which the bacteriological load was measured in Escherichia coli and Enterococci, in addition to electrical conductivity, major ions, Mn, Fe, As and pH. Three modes of data conditioning were tested and compared to the treatment with raw data. The results show that log transformation is the best option, revealing a relationship between E. coli content and all the other parameters. By reducing the impact of extreme values without eliminating them, it allowed a concentration of information on the first factorial axes of the PCA, and consequently a better definition of the associated processes. The spatial structure of the principal components and their cartographic representation is improved. The conditioning of the data with the square root function led to an intermediate improvement between the logarithmic transformation and the absence of conditioning. The application of these results should allow a targeted, more efficient, and therefore, less expensive monitoring of water quality by Regional Health Agencies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Water Management and Treatment)
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