A laboratory assessment of the impact of brewery wastewater discharge on sulfide and methane production in a sewer

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The impact of brewery wastewater discharge on sulfide and methane production in a sewer was assessed. Experiments were carried out on laboratory scale sewer reactors consisting of both an experimental and a control reactor. The control reactor was intermittently fed with real fresh sewage while the experimental reactor was fed with a mixture of brewery and domestic wastewater at two different proportions (10 and 25% v/v). 10% v/v discharge of brewery wastewater increased the H2S and CH4 production rates in the sewer reactor by 40% and 30%, respectively. When the brewery wastewater fraction was increased to 25% v/v, the H2S production rate of the experimental reactor decreased to the level of the control reactor. In contrast, the CH4 production rate maintained at a level that was 30% higher than that in the control reactor. These results indicate that the discharge of brewery wastewater into sewers can give negative impacts in relation to odour and corrosion management of the systems and will increase the greenhouse gas emissions from sewers. The study also reveals that the impact of trade waste on the biological reactions in sewers is complex, and requires careful experimental assessment in each case.

Keywords: brewery wastewater, sewer, sulfide and methane production

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