Friday, 24 Sep 2021
The wastepaper which accounts for more than 35 per cent of the total lignocellulosic waste of the municipal solid waste could be a potential feedstock for value-added products due to its rich cellulose content, researchers in Oman have found.

Omani researchers convert wastepaper into bioplastic, bioethanol and biodiesel

Municipal strong waste management is a difficult difficulty for the sultanate. Solid waste in Oman primarily consists of wood, paper, meals components, plastics, metals and glass. Municipal strong waste consists of higher amounts of cellulose, which is an best organic waste for the development of most of microorganisms.

Most of the carbon dioxide and methane are created from biodegradable cellulosic wastes such as wood, leaves, other agricultural residues and waste papers. Hence the use of cellulosic waste components as a substrate for bacterial fermentation would minimize the difficulty of waste management to a affordable extent.

With the aid of the grant received from The Research Council, Dr Sivakumar Nallusamy, assistant professor at the Department of Biology, Sultan Qaboos University, and his team effectively converted the wastepaper into commercially useful items. A team consisting of 1 post doctorate and 3 PhD students are operating in this project.

They have collected waste workplace paper, newspaper and cardboard paper and subjected them to various pre-therapy strategies. The pretreated wastepapers have been converted into fermentable sugars by enzymatic hydrolysis.

The obtained fermentable sugars have been effectively converted into bioplastic, bioethanol and biodiesel making use of suitable microorganisms.

The team has published their findings in internationally reputed journals. For this pioneer study on the conversion of waste paper into worth added items, Dr Nallusamy strengthened the bioprocess laboratory by installing a 100lt bioreactor that could be employed to generate the above items at a pilot scale level.

Municipal strong waste management is a difficult difficulty for the sultanate. With a population of above 3mn, the nation is creating a lot more than 1.6mn tonnes of strong waste per year. In Muscat 366,000 tonnes of garbage is collected annually and dumped in landfills.

The improve of strong waste is becoming a international difficulty. Different strategies such as burial, incineration and recycling are employed to dispose strong waste. Improper management of strong waste contaminates air, soil and water.

Disposal of strong waste in landfills pollutes the ground water and causes emission of greenhouse gases.

Information Source: Muscat Daily

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