Nitrous oxide emission by denitrifying phosphorus removal culture using polyhydroxyalkanoates as carbon source
Ng, Wun Jern
Date of Issue2012
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Nitrous oxide (N2O) emission has been reported to be enhanced during denitrification when internally-stored compounds are used as carbon sources. However, negligible N2O emissions have been detected in the few studies where polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) were specifically used. This study investigated and compared the potential enhancement of N2O production, based on utilization of an internally-stored polymer and external carbon (acetate) by a denitrifying phosphorus removal culture. Results indicated that at relatively low chemical oxygen demand-to-nitrogen (COD/N) ratios, more nitrite was reduced to N2O in the presence of an external carbon source as compared to an internal carbon source (PHA). At relatively higher COD/N ratios, similar N2O reduction rates were obtained in all cases regardless of the type of carbon source available. N2O reduction rates were, however, generally higher in the presence of an internal carbon source. Results from the study imply that when the presence of an external carbon source is not sufficient to support denitrification, it is likely competitively utilized by different metabolic pathways of denitrifying polyphosphate accumulating organisms (DPAOs) and other ordinary denitrifiers. This study also reveals that the consumption of PHA is potentially the rate-limiting step for N2O reduction during denitrification.
Journal of environmental sciences