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  Section: General Biotechnology / Biotechnology & Environment
 
 
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Environmental Biotechnology

 
     
 

Utilization of Sewage, and Agro-Wastes

Production of Single Cell Protein (SCP) on Sewage

Biogas from Sewage

Mushroom Production on Agro-wastes

Vermicomposting
Vermicomposting is the phenomenon of compost formation by earthworms. Obviously, earthworms play an important role in the cycling of plant nutrients, turnover of organic matter and maintenance of soil structure. They can consume 10-20 per cent of their own biomass per day. The most important effect of earthworms in agro-ecosystems is the increase in nutrient cycling, particularly nitrogen. They ingest organic matter with a relatively wide C:N ratio and convert it to earthworm tissue with a lower C:N ratio. Thus, they affect the physico-chemical properties of soil. In several countries including India significant work has been done. Scientists at Indian Institute of Sciences (Bangalore) have developed methods for frequent decomposition of coconut coir by using earthworms. Prof. B.R. Kaushal and coworkers at Kumaun University, Nainital have done significant work on earthworms, their food materials, food habit, organic matter turnover and established relationships between food consumption, changes in worm biomass, and casting activity of earthworms (Kaushal et al., 1994). They have also monitored the feeding and casting activity of Amynthas alexandri on corn, wheat leaves and mixed grasses in laboratory cultures. Casts were produced on surface and sides of the containers. Food consumption varied from 36 to 69 mg/g live worm/day. Cast production ranged from 4 to 6 mg/ g live worm/day (Kaushal et al., 1994). Some of the known and potential waste decomposer (such as Drawida nepalensis, etc.) earthworms may be introduced in such places where they are absent. Kaushal and Bisht (1992) studied growth and cocoon production of D. nepalensis on urine-free cow and horse manure. D. nepalensis is slow growing vermicomposting species and also shows parthenogenesis. Its life cycle is given in Fig. 21.8.

Life cycle of a vermicomposting earthwarm in cow manure (based on Kausal and Bisht, 1992).

Fig. 21.8. Life cycle of a vermicomposting earthwarm in cow manure (based on Kausal and Bisht, 1992).


 

  Content

Bioremediation

 

In situ bioremediation

 

 

Intrinsic bioremediation

 

 

Engineered in situ bioremediation

 

Ex situ bioremediation

 

 

Solid phase system (composting, composting process)

 

 

Slurry phase system (aerated laggons, low shear airlift reactor)

 

 

Factors affecting slurry phase bioremediation

 

Bioremediation of hydrocarbon

 

 

Use of mixture of bacteria

 

 

Use of genetically engineered bacterial strains 

 

Bioremediation of Industrial wastes

 

 

Bioremediation of dyes

 

 

Bioremediation of heavy metals

 

 

Bioremediation of coal waste through VAM fungi

 

Bioremediation of xenobiotics

 

 

Microbial degradation of xenobiotics

 

 

Gene manipulation of pesticide-degrading microorganisms

Utilization of sewage, and agro-wastes

 

Production of single cell protein

 

Biogas from sewage

 

Mushroom production on agro-wastes

 

Vermicomposting

Microbial leaching (bioleaching)   

 

Microorganisms used in leaching

 

Chemistry of leaching

 

 

Direct leaching

 

 

Indirect leaching

 

Leaching process (slope leaching heap leaching in situ leaching)

 

Examples of bioleaching

 

 

Copper leaching

 

 

Uranium leaching

 

 

Gold and silver leaching

 

 

Silica leaching

Hazards of environmental engineering

 

Survival of released GMMs in the environment

 

 

Adaptive mutagenesis in GMMs

 

 

Gene transfer from GMMs into other microorganisms

 

 

Gene transfer via conjugative transposons

 

 

Effect of environmental factors on gene transfer

 

Ecological impact of GMMs released into the environment

 

 

Growth inhibition of natural strains

 

 

Growth stimulation of indigenous strains

 

 

Replacement of natural strains

 

Monitoring of GEMs in the environment

 

 

Risk assessment of the GEMs released into the environment

 
     
 
 
     



     
 
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