Distillery Wastewater Treatment and Disposal

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1. One of the most important environmental problems faced by the world is management of wastes. Industrial processes create a variety of wastewater pollutants; which are difficult and costly to treat. Wastewater characteristics and levels of pollutants vary significantly from industry to industry. Now-a-days emphasis is laid on waste minimization and revenue generation through byproduct recovery. Pollution prevention focuses on preventing the generation of wastes, while waste minimization refers to reducing the volume or toxicity of hazardous wastes by water recycling and reuse, and process modifications and the byproduct recovery as a fall out of manufacturing process creates ample scope for revenue generation thereby offsetting the costs substantially.

2. Production of ethyl alcohol in distilleries based on cane sugar molasses constitutes a major industry in Asia and South America . The world's total production of alcohol from cane molasses is more than13 million m 3 /annum. The aqueous distillery effluent stream known as spent wash is a dark brown highly organic effluent and is approximately 12-15 times by volume of the product alcohol. It is one of the most complex, troublesome and strongest organic industrial effluents, having extremely high COD and BOD values. Because of the high concentration of organic load, distillery spent wash is a potential source of renewable energy. The paper reviews the status and appropriate treatment alternatives for disposal of the distillery wastewater.


Distillery Spentwash, Revenue Generation, Byproduct Recovery.

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