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Grzegorz Wielgosiński and Agata Targaszewska

Abstract

The article discusses issues related to the impact of incineration on human health and the environment. The aim of the work is to make a broad overview of the existing literature in this area. The problem was described in the literature based on a number of waste incineration plants studies in both Europe and all around the world. Subjects analyzed in the literature were risks at workplace, both administrative ones and directly related to the process of thermal treatment of waste. These risks result among others from the atmospheric emissions of many pollutants, including most of all polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and polychlorinated dibenzofurans, heavy metals and some volatile organic compounds. The results of these studies will be an important argument in the discussion on the possible risks to humans and the environment posed by waste incineration plants and the expediency of building waste incinerators in Poland.

Open access

Grzegorz Wielgosiński, Dorota Wasiak and Alicja Zawadzka

Abstract

Thermal treatment of waste is one of the ways of their processing. It is commonly used in most developed countries of the European Union. Major by-products of the combustion processes are slag and bottom ash. In the majority of EU countries bottom ash and slag are used as a priming for road construction. In Poland slag and bottom ash from incineration process are stabilized with the addition of cement and some polymers and are landfilled as wastes. In accordance to Polish law, depending on the leaching of heavy metals from fly ash and slag after thermal treatment of waste can be regarded as both hazardous and non-hazardous wastes. At present work sequential extraction methods described in the literature: Tessier’s method, van Herck’s method and BCR method were compared experimentally with the results of using Swiss standard TVA.SA.1991 and European standard EN 12457 and total concentration of metals in sample analyzed after complete digestion of sample. The study sample was bottom ash from the medical waste incineration plant.

Open access

Robert Cichowicz and Grzegorz Wielgosiński

Abstract

The quality of atmospheric air and the level of its pollution is inextricably linked with the development of humanity. Its prevalence and the lack of any natural protective barriers causes that it becomes a recipient of increasingly large amounts of different types of pollutants. This is particularly dangerous in the areas where both meteorological conditions and type of building prevent the spread of pollution. By using a portable gas micro-chromatograph it is possible to observe and analyze a seasonal impact of building density on carbon dioxide concentration and the effect of atmospheric conditions on CO2 level in the air in a specified area.

Open access

Grzegorz Wielgosiński, Olga Namiecińska, Patrycja Łechtańska and Adam Grochowalski

Abstract

Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and polychlorinated dibenzofurans are generally considered the most dangerous chemical substances known to man. Although they have never been the product of purposeful human activity, yet they are formed in many chemical and virtually all thermal processes. Research on the occurrence of dioxins in the environment, their release into the environment, ways of formation and methods of reducing their emissions lasts since the late seventies of the last century. Currently, we know three basic pathways of dioxins formation in thermal processes, the most important of them being the so called de novo synthesis which occurs outside the combustion zone at 200-400°C in the presence of catalysts (eg copper) and oxygen from the products of incomplete combustion including carbon black and chlorine or chlorinated compounds. It is well known that some metals like copper catalyze the de novo synthesis, while others decompose dioxins and furans formed previously. The formation of dioxins resulting from the de novo synthesis was studied through analysis of the effect of the type of metal on the course of the de novo synthesis. The influence of the addition of sulfur, nitrogen and alkali metals on this synthesis was also examined because some reports in the literature refer to inhibitory effect of these elements.

Open access

Robert Cichowicz and Grzegorz Wielgosiński

Abstract

The condition and quality of atmospheric air plays a very important role in the life of every living organism, including man. Every day we breathe atmospheric air containing CO2 whose level changes depending both on many external factors and physicochemical processes. The concentration of carbon dioxide in the air changes, among other things, due to the influence of communication routes which may adversely affect the environment. For this reason it is necessary to analyze changes in CO2 concentrations and try to determine their impact on the functioning of users of the area (so, one can observe and analyze seasonal impact of communication routes on separate sub-areas of research).

Open access

Robert Cichowicz and Grzegorz Wielgosiński

Abstract

Variations in immission fields resulting from emissions and pollutant dispersion in the atmosphere were investigated. The analysis was based on data from the four-year period covering the years 2012-2015, collected in two automatic atmospheric air monitoring stations, one located in Germany in Magdeburg which is the capital of Saxony-Anhalt and the other in Poland in Lodz, i.e. the seat of Lodz Region authorities. Selected immission monitoring stations in both cities are located in the areas with similar urban development and are characterized by high levels of pedestrian and car traffic. In both measuring stations the following atmospheric air pollutants were measured: PM10, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and nitrogen dioxide, and ozone (carbon monoxide was analyzed only for the station located in Lodz). On the basis of the measured data the periodic exceedance of air pollution limit values measured at both monitoring stations were observed, as well as the levels of particular pollutants and changes in immission fields were analyzed. It seems that this information may be useful not only to the competent authorities of the country but also to the users of these areas.

Open access

Patrycja Łechtańska and Grzegorz Wielgosiński

Abstract

The main air pollutants in the sintering process of iron ore are polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and harmful dust. Ore sintering on sinter strands is one of the first technology steps in the ironworks. It is a process in which iron ore is crushed, subjected to annealing and mixed with appropriate additives, and then sintered in order to produce sinter which is the main component of iron in the blast furnace process. PCDD/Fs emissions were measured and the addition of ammonium sulfate as an inhibitor of the synthesis of dioxins in the sintering process of iron ore was studied.

Open access

Grzegorz Wielgosiński, Robert Cichowicz and Jacek Wiśniewski

Abstract

In quantitative terms, sludge produced in the process of municipal wastewater treatment represents a small part of the total waste generated in municipal sources - its quantity represents only a few percent of the generated mass of municipal waste. However, the threats it brings, do not allow it to be neglected while designing the wastewater treatment process. At the same time, with increasing requirements regarding the quality of sewage discharged into the environment, there is an increase in the amount of sludge produced in wastewater treatment processes. In recent years, the share of thermal treatment of municipal sewage sludge has risen sharply - about 12 modern sludge incineration plants have been built and construction of new ones is considered. During more than a four-year operation of the sewage sludge incineration plant in the Combined Sewage Treatment Plant in Lodz (GOS) a large ammonia emission from the combustion process was observed. So, a decision was taken to examine this process. The paper presents results of ammonia emission from the combustion of sewage sludge from GOS as a function of temperature.

Open access

Robert Cichowicz, Grzegorz Wielgosiński and Agata Targaszewska

Abstract

Analysis of the distribution of CO2 concentrations was performed for a water-and-steam boiler plant located in a detached building supplying thermal energy to a hospital. The boiler plant was equipped with two low-temperature boilers and one high-temperature steam boiler. The maximum thermal energy demand of the hospital was 4280, 3500 kW of which came from the hot-water boilers and the remaining 780 kW from the steam boiler. Due to the operating system there were no permanent job positions in the boiler plant. Servicing consisted only in the supervision, periodic adjustment and maintenance of the equipment. These kinds of working conditions release the employer from the necessity to perform tests and measurements of working conditions in such a building. On the other hand, continuous measurements are made because of the installation safety and emissions of pollutants into the environment. The article presents results of the measurements and analysis of the distribution of CO2 concentrations inside and outside a small boiler plant, due to which it was found that the level of carbon dioxide concentration did not depend on the ambient air temperature. The resulting values are similar regardless of whether the measurements were taken in December 2012 or April 2013. However, there is an evident impact of seasons on the concentrations in the indoor air associated primarily with the demand for heat during the given period, the stay of people in the workplace and the number of working devices.

Open access

Grzegorz Wielgosiński, Robert Cichowicz, Agata Targaszewska and Jacek Wiśniewski

Abstract

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is one of the new, little more popular in Poland of elements of environmental management. In the world literature one can find many examples of the use of LCA but mainly for comparison purposes. The paper presents results of LCA analysis made on the basis of data from a running incineration of sewage sludge. Performing a thorough analysis of this process enables improved operational system, including through a better use of the resulting products of combustion, as well as determining the impact of the thermal treatment of sludge on the environment and compared the results with data from the literature. To date, in Poland has not been carried out environmental impact assessments and the process of thermal treatment of both sludge and waste, based on the assumptions of LCA.