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International Journal of Environment Science and Technology
Center for Environment and Energy Research and Studies (CEERS)
ISSN: 1735-1472
EISSN: 1735-2630
Vol. 10, No. 6, 2013, pp. 1295-1308
Bioline Code: st13126
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

International Journal of Environment Science and Technology, Vol. 10, No. 6, 2013, pp. 1295-1308

 en Life cycle assessment of small-scale constructed wetland and extended aeration activated sludge wastewater treatment system
Lopsik, K.

Abstract

Wastewater treatment plants help to reduce negative impact on the environment by improving the quality of effluent. Different technologies are used in wastewater treatment, and one of the tasks is to find the most environmentally sound option, taking into account the use of resources and energy during construction and operation of the treatment system. The aim of the study is to assess environmental impacts from two different types of small-scale wastewater treatment systems, a constructed wetland and extended aeration activated sludge treatment system using Life Cycle Assessment method. The system boundaries include construction and operation phases. Assessment has been carried out using SimaPro software and Impact 2002+ and ReCiPe assessment methods with characterisation and normalisation stages. The results show that the main negative impact of constructed wetland is caused by the construction phase and use of lightweight expanded clay aggregate to construct the hybrid filter. Impacts from extended aeration activated sludge treatment system are mainly caused from the use of electricity and the quality of the effluent, therefore, the use phase has a larger impact on the life cycle. Since a large amount of energy is used to produce lightweight expanded clay aggregate, the impact of 1 population equivalent of constructed wetland is larger than the impact of extended aeration activated sludge treatment system. Constructed wetland dominates in human toxicity, acidification, land use, ozone layer depletion and the use of non-renewable resources categories. Extended aeration activated sludge treatment system dominates in categories associated with eutrophication and ecotoxicity

Keywords
Sewage; Light expanded clay aggregate; Environmental impact; Impact 2002+; ReCiPe

 
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