chapter  8
Waste Treatment to Minimize Disposal
WithE. Higgins Thomas
Pages 66

In considering a waste minimization project, the first goal is to try to eliminate the waste as early in the production process as possible. It is, however, rarely feasible to optimize a production process to the extent that no waste is produced. “Zero discharge” is a laudable goal, but it is seldom practical. Conventional treatment methods for nondestructible inorganic wastes rarely do more than concentrate the harmful constituents in as small a volume as is feasible for disposal. Metals cannot be destroyed but are merely transformed from a dissolved state to a solid form. To assist in evaluating water and wastewater management alternatives, a computer model of the manufacturing facility's water use and wastewater production was developed. This water management model included water usage and quality requirements for more than 50 manufacturing processes in nine separate manufacturing areas, taking into account the chemical constituents and pollutants added to the water.