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Environmental Protection

In our soap and detergent plant, the waste mainly consists of the types of acid
and caustic potash that we used to make our soap. Before disposing our waste,
we intend to clarify it, and ensure that it is not harming the environment in any
way.

The steady waste discharge rate of the plant is about 3000kg per hour of waste,
mainly in the form of unreacted acids used in the soap-making process. This is
continuous and not intermittent. However, should any emergency occur, such as
a total plant shutdown, spills and leakages or any other manner through which
the products and waste products are released into the environment, this is
intermittent.

Environmental Issues caused by the products

To make soap and detergent we are using mild acids and bases to create the
surfactant, however, the soap and detergents themselves may have some
effects on the environment should they be released into a waterbody
(intermittently). The table below shows the hazards caused to the environment
by incidents of such manner.

Table 3:

Product Hazard to the environment

Liquid soap Liquid soap has a relatively low concentration of BOD, biochemical
oxygen demand, compared to other forms of surfactants. They
also have low values of COD, chemical oxygen demand. This
means that if released into a water body, algae bloom will occur,
causing organisms to be starved of oxygen. However, the value of
BOD and COD are relatively lower compared to bar soaps. The
algal bloom issue can be prevented by mixing or pushing the
algae deep into the water, where it cannot retrieve sufficient
oxygen. Although surfactants are not toxic, it may cause other
biological issues once it foams into waterbodies where organisms
thrive.

Liquid detergent Like liquid soap, the values of BOD and COD are relatively lower,
thus having the same effect on the environment as liquid soap.
The consequences of this will be mild algae blooms, and
disruption of biological systems present in water bodies where the
detergent is accidentally disposed off in.
However, should an emergency resulting in an intermittent release of chemicals
take place, reactants of the soap-making and detergent making process will also
cause environmental harm, so the properties and hazards that might be caused
by the reactants of soap and detergent are listed in the table below.

Reactant Hazard
Palmitic acid
Lauric Acid
Oleic acid
Caustic potash
STPP
Coconut diethanolamine
Linear alkylbenzene sulphate

What to include next. How to eliminate the things that cause environmental
harm

Acid cleaning
Sludge removal
Recycle stream- minimize waste