Saline fish wastewater in biogas plants - Biomethanation toxicity and safe use

Carlos O. Letelier-Gordo, Enrico Mancini, Per Bovbjerg Pedersen, Irini Angelidaki, Ioannis A. Fotidis*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Increasing marine land-based recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) and stricter environmental regulations, pose new challenges to the aquaculture industry on how to treat and dispose saline fish wastewater. The fish wastewater could be incorporated into biogas reactors, but currently, the effects of salinity on the biomethanation process are poorly known. This study aimed to assess the toxicity of fish wastewater with different salinities on the biomethanation process and to propose optimum co-digestion scenarios for maximal methane potential and safe use in biogas plants. Results showed that, depending on salinity and organic content, it is possible to efficiently co-digest from 3.22 to 61.85% fish wastewater (v/v, wastewater/manure) and improve the maximum methane production rate from 2.72 to 61.85%, respectively compared to cow manure mono-digestion. Additionally, salinity was identified as the main inhibitor of biomethanation process with a half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of 4.37 g L-1, while sulphate reduction was identified as a secondary inhibitor.
Original languageEnglish
Article number111233
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Biochemical methane potential
  • Co-digestion
  • Fish wastewater
  • Inhibition
  • Saline effluents


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