INNOVATIVE ANIMAL MANURE TREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES FOR ENHANCED ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
Location: Coastal Plain Soil, Water and Plant Conservation Research
Title: REDUCTION OF AMMONIA EMISSIONS FROM SWINE LAGOONS USING ALTERNATIVE WASTEWATER TREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES
Submitted to: Proceedings of the Workshop on Agricultural Air Quality: State of the Science
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: February 15, 2006
Publication Date: June 5, 2006
Citation: Szogi, A.A., Vanotti, M.B. 2006. Reduction of ammonia emissions from swine lagoons using alternative wastewater treatment technologies. In: Workshop on Agricultural Air Quality Proceedings, June 5-8, 2006, Washington, DC. p. 1155-1160.
There is a need for treatment technologies that can effectively address environmental concerns associated with ammonia emissions from anaerobic lagoons, typically used to manage manure. To meet this need, we conducted a study to determine the effects of water quality improvement in swine lagoons on ammonia emission rates using alternative wastewater treatments. This determination was done in three contiguous swine production units that had similar animal production management and lagoons with similar surface area (about 0.9 ha each), but their waste management was substantially different. In the first production unit, a full-scale wastewater treatment plant produced a clean effluent that in turn converted the old lagoon into a water storage pond. In the second production unit, the traditional anaerobic lagoon treatment method was maintained as a control. In the third production unit, raw flushed manure was treated through a solid-liquid separation system before anaerobic lagoon storage. Passive flux samplers were used to measure simultaneously the ammonia gas fluxes from the lagoons receiving treated water and the traditional anaerobic lagoon. Ammonia emissions from the traditional anaerobic lagoon (control) totaled 12,540 kg N/lagoon/year (13,633 kg N/ha/year). This result compares to lower ammonia emissions of 3,355 kg N/lagoon/yr (or 3,647 kg N/ha/yr) from the anaerobic lagoon with solid-liquid separation, and 1,210 kg N/lagoon/yr (or 1,311 kg N/ha/yr) from the converted lagoon. In the anaerobic lagoon with solid-liquid separation, total annual ammonia emissions were reduced by 73% with respect to those of the traditional lagoon. In the converted lagoon, remarkable water quality improvements such as lower N concentrations substantially reduced annual ammonia emissions by 90% with respect to those found in the traditional anaerobic lagoon. These results overall demonstrate that alternative new wastewater technologies can substantially reduce ammonia emissions from confined swine production.