Microplastics have inhibitory effects or non-obvious effects on the performance of biological wastewater treatment, depending on polymer type and size. Microplastics can be entrapped by biological flocs or adhere to the surface of biological flocs during suspend-growth processes. Meanwhile, they might also be adsorbed on the surface of filters and act as growth media for microorganisms during attached-growth processes. In advanced wastewater treatment processes, microplastics might be more prone to direct screening by membrane filter, in which the removal efficiency is relatively higher. Generally, the presence of microplastics can inhibit the abundance of microorganisms and key enzymes depending on the impact of extracellular polymeric substance secretion. This chapter summarizes the fate of microplastics in conventional and advanced biological wastewater treatment, examines the impacts of microplastics on the structure of sludge, and discusses the effects of microplastics on the diversity of key microorganisms and enzymes. Copyright © 2023 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
|Title of host publication||Microplastics in urban water management|
|Editors||Bing-Jie NI, Qiuxiang XU, Wei WEI|
|Place of Publication||Hoboken, NJ|
|Publication status||Published - 2023|
CitationCheng, Y. L., Tse, T. C., Li, Z., Wang, Y., & Tsang, Y. F. (2023). Effects of microplastics on wastewater treatment processes. In B.-J. Ni, Q. Xu, & W. Wei (Eds.), Microplastics in urban water management (pp. 119-145). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
- Biological wastewater treatment
- Organic removal
- Methane production