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Evaluation of Strategies to Minimize Ecotoxic Side-Effects of Sorbent-Based Sediment Remediation

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Zhantao Han, Professor David WernerORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


BACKGROUND: In-situ sorbent amendment for persistent organic pollutant sequestration in sediment has over the past fifteen years steadily progressed from bench-scale trials to full-scale remediation applications. Hindering a wider technology uptake are, however, concerns about ecotoxic side-effects of the most commonly used sorbent, activated carbon, on sensitive, sediment dwelling organisms like Lumbriculus variegatus. Using River Tyne sediment polluted with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and L. variegatus as our case study, we investigated sorbent alternativesand magnetic sorbent-recovery as potential engineering strategies to mitigate such ecotoxic side-effects. We also looked into the potential benefits of contacting the treated sediment with fresh River Tyne water, as would naturally occur over time in the intended applications.RESULTS: We identified magnetic biochar as an effective PAH sorbent with lesser ecotoxic side-effects than magnetic activated carbon. Especially after 85.1-100% magnetic recovery of this biochar, no ecotoxic side-effects on L. variegatus were measurable in the treated sediment. Our results show that ecotoxic effects of magnetic activated carbon can be alleviated through sorbent recovery. In contrast, contacting treated sediment repeatedly with River Tyne water had no measurable benefits.CONCLUSIONS: Magnetic biochar is a promising sorbent material for the remediation of PAH polluted sediment.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Han Z, Abel S, Akkanen J, Werner D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology

Year: 2017

Volume: 92

Issue: 8

Pages: 1938-1942

Print publication date: 01/08/2017

Online publication date: 02/02/2017

Acceptance date: 30/01/2017

Date deposited: 01/02/2017

ISSN (print): 0268-2575

ISSN (electronic): 1097-4660

Publisher: Wiley


DOI: 10.1002/jctb.5224


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