Providing adequate sanitation to people is one of the world’s biggest environmental/health challenges. The statistics are staggering. An estimated 2.6 billion people lack access to basic sanitation worldwide. Ninety percent of the wastewater in developing countries discharged daily is untreated.
Dead zones in the oceans - locations of reduced or absent oxygen levels - are still spreading worldwide, now covering 95,000 square miles of the marine environment including in North America, Europe and Asia.
Emerging chemicals of health concern, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and pharmaceuticals, are now routinely found in treated wastewater effluents.
Climate change may aggravate the problem with droughts concentrating wastewater pollution in rivers and lakes and increased flooding overwhelming ageing sewage infrastructure in cities and towns. Wastewater generates methane and nitrous oxide, climate gases that are 21 and 310 times more powerful than CO2, respectively.
Fortunately, the landscape is changing as technologies and concepts are being developed to allow plants to be energy independent or even net energy producers. This evolution in thinking moves wastewater treatment plants from being major energy consumers to net energy producers and represents a paradigm shift in the sector.
Due to concerns over water scarcity, interest has grown drastically for beneficial reuses of treated wastewater; from "toilet to tap" is slowly becoming a reality.
This course will cover the theory and practice of wastewater treatment. The environmental chemistry and biology of wastewaters will be discussed, along with regulations driving their treatment. The concepts presented will provide an understanding of commonly-used physical, chemical and biological operations and processes in wastewater treatment systems. Fundamentals will be emphasized, along with emerging concerns, associated changes in regulations, industry trends and innovative technologies.