Bioresource technology
An activated sludge treatment was evaluated for its effectiveness in cleaning up a petrochemical wastewater in Iran. For assessing biodegradation potential of activated sludge, seven characteristics of wastewater (temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, chemical oxygen demand, concentrations of ethylene dichloride, vinyl chloride, and total hydrocarbons) were monitored during six months. It was shown that dominant pollutants in order of magnitude were normal-alkanes (C10–C21), aromatics, and polycyclic hydrocarbons. The activated sludge treatment revealed maximum reduction of 89%, 99%, 92%, and 80% in COD, ethylene dichloride, vinyl chloride and total hydrocarbons concentrations, respectively. Preliminary screening of culturable petrochemical-degrading microorganisms of the activated sludge resulted in the collection of 67 bacterial and one mold species. Bacterial strains mainly belonged to PseudomonasFlavobacteriumComamonasCytophagaAcidovoraxSphingomonasBacillus and Acinetobacter genera. The isolated mold was identified as Trichoderma sp.

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