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Chemical characterisation of biosludge from a wastewater treatment plant in a neutral sulphite semi-chemical pulp mill by single and sequential extraction of heavy metals and micro-/macronutrients — a case study

Risto Pöykiö, Kati Manskinen, Juha Oksanen, Hannu Nurmesniemi, and Olli Dahl

City of Kemi, Valtakatu 26, 94100, Kemi, Finland



Abstract: The main impetus for utilising the biosludge from the neutral sulphite semi-chemical pulping process is the Finnish legislation which from 1st January 2016 prohibits the deposition of this residue in landfills in Finland. The dry matter content of the biosludge in this case study was low (12.1 mass %), meaning that incineration of this residue is uneconomical. The biosludge was rich in P (6260 mg kg−1). This, together with the high total organic carbon value of 459 g kg−1 and the metal concentrations (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, Pb, Zn and Hg) lower than the Finnish permissible limits for land application, supports wide and various end-uses for this residue. Except for S (27600 mg kg−1) and Cd (1.4 mg kg−1), the other heavy metal concentrations in the biosludge were lower than the maximum values for heavy metal concentrations in a non-contaminated soil referred to the literature. From the utilisation perspective, and in view of the high levels of S and Na, this residue could efficiently be used, for example, to landscape landfills.

Keywords: BCR extraction – heavy metals – landfilling – pulping – pulp mill biosolids

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.2478/s11696-014-0606-y


Chemical Papers 68 (11) 1546–1554 (2014)

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