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Whole Effluent Toxicity from Active and Inactive Landfills: Variation of Leachate Impact on Fish (Pangasius sutchi)

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The use of landfill as a major waste disposal option is very predominant in most developing nations; hence most landfills or dump sites that abound in such places are termed “active” since they still receive MSW. However, the developed and developing nations still have closed landfills which are termed as “non-active.” Whole effluent (leachate) that is produced from dumping of waste becomes a subject of concern considering the potential impact on the environment. This study emphasized on the characterized discrete components of leachate from both active and non-active landfills with view of using bioassay to show their varying degree of toxicity on aquatic life. Pangasius sutchi was used as a test organism to analyze the acute toxic impact of leachate from both landfill classes. Although, there were qualitative similarities in the physico-chemical analyses of the leachate samples, the quantitative aspect was markedly different between the two landfills respectively. However, acute testing revealed that increased concentration of total components of the leachate may not be a complete reflection or factor for increased toxic impact but rather it may depend on the increased concentration of discrete components. Finney's probit analytical method recorded 3.2% v/v and 3.8% v/v LC50 for active and non-active landfills (in Asia Pacific) leachate respectively. Further statistical analysis and modeling showed high degree of disparity in toxicity. Ammonia toxicity was highly suspected when a non-active landfill leachate was used (880 mg/L of NH3–N). The study suggested that leachate from non-active landfill is more toxic than that from an active one, as against earlier studies that portends otherwise. Therefore bioassay can provide more indirect information on the potential impact of effluent rather than solely relying on chemical analysis.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2013

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  • ADVANCED SCIENCE LETTERS is an international peer-reviewed journal with a very wide-ranging coverage, consolidates research activities in all areas of (1) Physical Sciences, (2) Biological Sciences, (3) Mathematical Sciences, (4) Engineering, (5) Computer and Information Sciences, and (6) Geosciences to publish original short communications, full research papers and timely brief (mini) reviews with authors photo and biography encompassing the basic and applied research and current developments in educational aspects of these scientific areas.
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