Bio-based sorbents are preferred over chemical-based methods for the clean-up of crude oil spills in marine environments because bio-based sorbents are more environmentally friendly. This study evaluates the use of peat-derived biochar (PB) as a bio-sorbent for the sorption and removal of crude oil spills from synthetic seawater. Experiments were designed to determine the effect of four operating factors (PB/crude oil contact time, PB dosage, oil dosage, and temperature) on two performance indicators (crude oil sorption capacity of PB, S, and oil removal efficiency, R%). Regression models containing linear, quadratic, and two-way interaction terms were developed to predict S and R% from the four factors. Response surface methodology (RSM) was employed to identify the optimum conditions for the sorption and removal of crude oil from seawater. The performance indicators were predicted with a high degree of accuracy, i.e. with coefficient of determination (R2) values exceeding 90%. The optimum values of S and R% were estimated to be 32.5 g of crude oil/g of sorbent and 91.2% respectively. These optimum values were attained after 70 min of PB/crude oil contact time and at a temperature of 45 °C. The spent sorbent maintained its performance after three cycles of regeneration and reuse, suggesting that the material is reusable.
- Crude oil spill
- Peat-derived biochar
- Statistical analysis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Engineering
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law