Greenhouse Nitrogen Emissions from Wastewater Treatment Operation: Phase I: MOLECULAR LEVEL THROUGH WHOLE REACTOR LEVEL CHARACTERIZATION

IWA Publishing, 2013

Engineered biological nutrient removal (BNR) processes have been identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as potential contributors to atmospheric nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions. This is a significant concern to wastewater utilities because the greenhouse impact of nitrous oxide emissions on a mass equivalent basis is 300 times that of carbon dioxide. This study differs from other studies in that it characterizes the microbial pathways for N2O formation in addition to measurement of emission rates from several BNR and non-BNR plants across the U.S. As the production and emission pathways are understood, operational strategies to minimize N2O emissions appear highly likely.

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