Utilization of plant-based natural coagulants as future alternatives towards sustainable water clarification

Choy, S.Y, Nagendra Prasad, K.M., Wu, T.Y., Raghunandan, M.E., Ramanan, R.N. (2014)., Journal of Environmental Sciences, 26(11), 2178-2189. doi: 10.1016/j.jes.2014.09.024 (ISI: Q2; Impact factor: 2.002, 2014), 2014

Rapid industrial developments coupled with surging population growth have complicated issues dealing with water scarcity as the quest for clean and sanitized water intensifies globally. Existing fresh water supplies could be contaminated with organic, inorganic and biological matters that have potential harm to the society. Turbidity in general is a measure of water cloudiness induced by such colloidal and suspended matters and is also one of the major criteria in raw water monitoring to meet the stipulated water quality guidelines. Turbidity reduction is often accomplished using chemical coagulants such as alum. The use of alum is widely associated with potential development of health issues and generation of voluminous sludge. Natural coagulants that are available in abundance can certainly be considered in addressing the drawbacks associated with the use of chemical coagulants. Twenty one types of plant-based natural coagulants categorized as fruit waste and others are identified and presented collectively with their research summary in this review. The barriers and prospects of commercialization of natural coagulants in near future are also discussed.

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