Palm oil processing operation is invariably accompanied by palm oil mill effluent (POME) considered to be an environmental pollutant. While anaerobic digestion and the present tertiary treatment technologies of POME are able to meet the current regulatory effluent discharge requirement of biological oxygen demand (BOD) 100 mg litre-1 – the current limit set by the Department of Environment (DOE) – the existing technologies are unable to consistently meet the proposed stringent BOD regulatory requirement of 20 mg litre-1 to be imposed by the DOE. This article investigates the possibility of integrating several bioprocesses for POME treatment at the Malaysian palm oil mills by transforming the POME into several high valueadded products; with BOD 20 mg litre-1 attainable at its final discharge. This integrated approach has the potential of achieving zero-effluent discharge along with the production of biogas, biofertiliser and recycled water, in treating industrial wastewater to reduce pollution.
* Malaysian Palm Oil Board, 6 Persiaran Institusi, Bandar Baru Bangi, 43000 Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia.
** Shanghai Jiaotong University, 800, Dongchuan Road, Min Hang, Shanghai 200240, the People’s Republic of China.
‡ Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia.
1. Liew, W. L., et al. "Conventional Methods and Emerging Wastewater Polishing Technologies for Palm Oil Mill Effluent Treatment: A Review." Journal of environmental management 149 (2014): 222-235.
2. Nurul Adela, B., et al. "Characteristics of Palm Oil Mill Effluent (Pome) in an Anaerobic Biogas Digester." Asian Journal of Microbiology, Biotechnology and Environmental Sciences 16(1) (2014): 225-231.
3. Wang, J., et al. "Zero Discharge Performance of an Industrial Pilot-Scale Plant Treating Palm Oil Mill Effluent." BioMed Research International 2015(2015) Article ID 617861
4. Favre-Réguillon, A. "Comment on "Life Cycle Carbon Footprint of Linear Alkylbenzenesulfonate from Coconut Oil, Palm Kernel Oil, and Petroleum-Based Paraffins". ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering 3(8) (2015): 1686-1687
5. Wang, J., et al. "Anaerobic Treatment of Palm Oil Mill Effluent in Pilot-Scale Anaerobic EGSB Reactor." BioMed Research International 2015 (2015)
Last updated: 18 August 2015
Subscribe with us to get the latest information on Palm Oil Research from MPOB today!