The Role Of Micro-Organisms In Waste Recycling

Project and Seminar Material for Environmental Science

The Role Of Micro-Organisms In Waste Recycling


Abstract


This study was carried out on the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling. The study was carried out in Shongai Packaging Industry Ltd, Ogun State. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprised of staff of Shongai Packaging Industry Ltd, Ogun State. In determining the sample size, the researcher purposefully selected 39 respondents and 35 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables, while the hypotheses were tested using chi-square statistical tool. The result of the findings reveals that micro organisms plays a significant role in biodegradation of organic material in waste recycling. The study also revealed that micro organisms plays a significant role in fermentation stages of waste recycling. Further findings showed that micro organisms plays a significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem. Therefore, it is recommended that microbiological methods of waste management should be developed and utilized, not only for environmental clean-up but also for the value-added benefits of such methods. Waste collection systems should be enhanced for sustainable and more hygienic environmental conditions especially around populated areas of the municipalities. To mention but a few.


Table of Content


Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the Study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions
  • 4.4 Test of Hypotheses

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Microorganisms are ubiquitous in nature where they have a variety of essential functions. Many microbes are uniquely adapted to specific environmental niches, such as those that inhabit the DeadSea (Halobacterium) and Chlamydomonas nivalis that causes pink snow.1 Microbes also play an essential role in the natural recycling of living materials. All naturally produced substances are biodegradable, that is, they can be broken down by living organisms such as bacteria or fungi.

Microorganisms have been invaluable in finding solutions for several problems mankind has encountered in maintaining the quality of the environment. They have, for example, been used to positive effect in human and animal health, genetic engineering, environmental protection, and municipal and industrial waste treatment. Microorganisms have enabled feasible and cost-effective responses which would have been impossible via chemical or physical engineering methods.2 More so, microbial technologies have successfully been applied to a wide range of environmental problems, especially waste management issues.

Rapid urbanization, industrial revolution and tremendous pressure of population on the natural resources put great stress on the global environment. Various unscientic activities of modern civilization generate huge quantity of wastes which lead to pollution (Raj et๎€žal. 2018). Moreover increased rate of consumption of raw materials by the large-scale industries results in dumping of huge quantities of chemical contaminants and radioactive wastes in the environment, leads to irreparable damage to the overall biosphere. The generation of waste is the main factor for a loss of materials and energy and raises environmental consequences and cost on society for its collection, treatment, recycling, disposal and overall management (Jhariya et๎€žal. 2018). Generation of harmful waste in Nigeria is directly related to the development of the cities and has a significant variation among the cities. If the rate of industrialization increases it is thought that the amount of wastes will also increase (Sharma and Shah 2005), unless application of scientific waste management such as waste recycling.

The scenario of waste management (WM) is significantly different between developed and developing nations because developing nations are lacking proper collection and disposal mechanism of waste. So, WM has become very critical and receives priority due to progressive concern related to environmental degradation and sustainability (Brewer 2001). Uncontrolled, haphazard and unscientific means of dumping of wastes on the outskirts of towns and periphery of villages results in overflowing landfills, which are not only impossible to return to a suitable condition but also have solemn environmental implications in terms of soil and groundwater pollution and contribution to global warming.

An effective or operative system of WM is the need of the hour and should be economically and environmentally sustainable.

There are various popular methods of WM and treatment which are practised regularly such as the following:

  1. Incineration method โ€“ here wastes and trash materials are treated with high temperature.
  2. Sanitary landfills โ€“ this method is more useful and practised through-out the world. Practically sanitary landfills are the sites where wastes are kept isolated from the environment.
  3. Recycling โ€“ it means transformation of materials into new form for use. (4) Avoidance and reduction โ€“ avoidance means reuse of second-hand products, designing reusable products and, instead of buying new, repairing broken items.

Bacteria and other microbes are often associated with illnesses, but they have an important role in the waste recycling process. They are responsible for the biodegradation of organic materials and nutrient recycling in the natural environment. In addition to this fundamental role, microbes are also essential to the fermentation stages of waste recycling, biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystems, helpful in the treatment of waste-waters and in the production of alternative energy.

Microorganisms recycle nutrients in the environment, by decomposing organic materials. Organic materials, such as animal carcasses and tree trunks, decay by the action of decomposing microbes, which are also responsible for getting rid of industrial and household waste. Through a process called biodegradation, microbes use nutrients and chemical substances found in the environment for their own survival. The nutrients from the breakdown of these products are free in the environment to feed plants or algae, which in turn feed all animals.

People have used bacteria, yeasts and other microbes to produce many foods and beverages since ancient times. Bread is the result of a microbial fermentation of sugars to produce carbon dioxide, which are liberated in the dough making the bread rise. Microbes are also fundamental in the production of beer and wine, converting sugars into alcohol. Microbial fermentation is also a step during the chemical process of waste recycling. Aspergillus carbonarius is a microorganism used in the biodegradation of chromium shavings, which are part of tannery waste. When degrading brewery waste and other organic materials, microbes can produce methane gas, the major component of natural gas. As of February 2011, scientists at Cornell University, NY, are also researching the use of microbial communities to produce liquid biofuels, reports Science Daily. Anaerobic microorganisms, which live in oxygen laking environments, can also convert a mixture of manure and energy crops, such as: sugar cane, maize.

So cleaning of polluted environment in a sustainable way is very much necessary; in this regard the role of microorganism in WM and biodegradation of contaminants has intensified in recent years (Banerjee 2018). Different microorganism based biotechnological tools such as bioremediation, biodegrada-tion, biocomposting and biotransformation have been used to accumulate and degrade huge range of contaminants effectively (Banerjee 2018). Maghraby and Hassan (2018) reported that Cladophora sp. (green algae) has high bioaccumulation capability for toxic metals and can be used as potent and alternative WM agent. Moreover, microbial ecology is a major important factor for proper functioning of biological processes of waste water (WW) treatment systems. Martinez (2018) demonstrate that archaea and bacteria are dominant in the bioreactors of effective Role of Microorganism in Waste Management and Environmental.

So use of microorganisms with different biotechnologies is the most effective method to treat different wastes, in addition to being eco-friendly, cost-effective and environmentally sustainable method. The main objective of this paper is to propose and promote the application of most affordable and environment-friendly method for treating polluted waste with the use of different microbial agents towards environmental and recycling sustainability.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

In Nigeria with a population of 182 million, waste generation and disposal is a problem with several challenges to be addressed. The municipal wastes in Nigeria are from domestic, agricultural and industrial sources, and may be grouped into liquid, solid, gaseous and hazardous. However, the most problematic are the liquid and solid wastes.

The liquid wastes are wastewater arising from municipal and industrial sources, while the solid waste management is a complex major issue that requires technology, human resources and funding. A lot of harmonized effort must be put into the control of wastes at all stages of production, collection, transportation, treatment, recycling and ultimate disposal in order to achieve the desired results.

Recycling as one of the major waste management strategy involves the passing of a substance through a system that enables that substance to be reused. Waste recycling involves the collection of waste materials and the separation and clean-up of those materials. Recycling waste means that fewer new products and consumables need to be produced, saving raw materials and reducing energy consumption. Thus, the process is considered significant and the role of micro organism in this activity must not be under emphasized.

Bacteria and other microbes are often associated with illnesses, but they have an important role in the waste recycling process. They are responsible for the biodegradation of organic materials and nutrient recycling in the natural environment. In addition to this fundamental role, microbes are also essential to the fermentation stages of waste recycling, biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystems, helpful in the treatment of wastewaters and in the production of alternative energy.

Microbes, or microscopic organisms, are widely used in large-scale industrial processes. They are crucial for the production of a variety of metabolites, such as ethanol, butanol, lactic acid and riboflavin, as well as the transformation of chemicals that help to reduce environmental pollution. For instance, microbes can be used to create biofertilizers or to reduce metal pollutants. Microbes can also be used to produce certain non-microbial products, such as the diabetes medication insulin. In the light of the above, we therefore seek to assess the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling in the Nigerian society.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The main aim of this study is to examine the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling Hence, the study will be channeled to the following specific objectives;

  1. To determine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of organic material in waste recycling.
  2. To ascertain whether micro organisms plays significant role in fermentation stages of waste recycling.
  3. To examine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem.
  4. To determine whether micro organisms are helpful in the treatment of waste waters.

1.4 Research Questions

The following research questions will guide this study:

  1. Are micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of organic material in waste recycling?
  2. Does micro organisms play significant role in fermentation stages of waste recycling?
  3. Does micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem?
  4. Are micro organisms helpful in the treatment of wastewaters?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses will validate this study:

  • H0: Micro organisms do not play significant role in waste recycling.
  • Ha: Micro organisms do play significant role in waste recycling.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The relevance of this study cannot be over emphaised as it will widen or enlighten key authorities on the usefulness of micro organisms in carrying out waste management through the waste recycling techniques.

Additionally, subsequent researchers will use it as literature review. This means that, other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regards to the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling.


1.7 Scope of the Study

This study is structured to generally examine the prevalence the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling. However, the study will further examine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of organic material in waste recycling, to ascertain whether micro organisms plays significant role in fermentation stages of waste recycling, to examine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem, and to examine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem. The respondents for this study will comprise of the staff of Shongai Packaging Industry Ltd, Ogun State


1.8 Limitations of the Study

Like in every human endeavour, the researcher encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited choice of sample size. More so, the researcher simultaneously engaged in this study with other academic work. As a result, the amount of time spent on research will be reduced.

Moreover, the case study method utilized in the study posed some challenges to the investigator including the possibility of biases and poor judgment of issues. However, the investigator relied on respect for the general principles of procedures, justice, fairness, objectivity in observation and recording, and weighing of evidence to overcome the challenges.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Waste

Waste is generated from human activity mostly.

Waste Management

Waste management is basically the storage, collection and disposal and managing of waste materials. The main aim of WM is to reduce the effects and consequences of wastes on human health and environment.

Recycling

This is to pass a substance through a system that enables that substance to be reused. Waste recycling involves the collection of waste materials and the separation and clean-up of those materials.

Microorganisms

These are ubiquitous in nature where they have a variety of essential functions.


1.10 Organization of the Study

The study is categorized into five chapters. The first chapter presents the background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, research questions and hypothesis, the significance of the study, scope/limitations of the study, and definition of terms. The chapter two covers the review of literature with emphasis on conceptual framework, theoretical framework, and empirical review. Likewise, the chapter three which is the research methodology, specifically covers the research design, population of the study, sample size determination, sample size, and selection technique and procedure, research instrument and administration, method of data collection, method of data analysis, validity and reliability of the study, and ethical consideration. The second to last chapter being the chapter four presents the data presentation and analysis, while the last chapter(chapter five) contains the summary, conclusion and recommendation.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.


5.2 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was on the role of micro-organisms in waste recycling. The study is was specifically set to determine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of organic material in waste recycling, ascertain whether micro organisms plays significant role in fermentation stages of waste recycling, examine whether micro organisms plays significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem, and determine whether micro organisms are helpful in the treatment of waste waters. The study was carried out in Shongai Packaging Industry Ltd, Ogun State.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 35 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent arestaff of Shongai Packaging Industry Ltd, Ogun State.


5.3 Conclusions

Based on the findings of this study, the researcher made the following conclusion.

  1. Micro organisms plays a significant role in biodegradation of organic material in waste recycling.
  2. Micro organisms plays a significant role in fermentation stages of waste recycling.
  3. Micro organisms plays a significant role in biodegradation of oil in the marine ecosystem.
  4. Micro organisms are helpful in the treatment of waste waters.

5.4 Recommendations

Based on the findings of the study, the following recommendations are proffered.

  1. Relevant government parastatals should consolidate on their programs and projects like of the Integrated Solid Waste Management System (ISWM) project that educate residents on proper ways to manage waste, and management of waste collection โ€ข
  2. Waste separation at the source should be done to allow for more effective and efficient waste collection and management
  3. Microbiological methods of waste management should be developed and utilized, not only for environmental clean-up but also for the value-added benefits of such methods.
  4. Lastly, waste collection systems should be enhanced for sustainable and more hygienic environmental conditions especially around populated areas of the municipalities.

The Role Of Micro-Organisms In Waste Recycling


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