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Environmental Aspects in Textile Industry: Ecological Hazards and Remedial Measures

A study on environmental impact of textile industry and its remedies

Among many pollution-creating industries, textile has a larger share in terms of its impact with regard to noise, air and effluent. It is, therefore, felt worthwhile to study the ecological hazards associated with various operations of textiles. In this paper, pollution arising out of noise and air is discussed. Areas of concern and their appropriate rectifying procedures are also taken into account.

Ecological degradation happens in natural fibre right from cultivation to finishing of ultimate product. Prominent parameters and possible package of corrective measures are highlighted. Synthetic fibre industry is not an exception to environmental pollution and therefore various pollution-creating activities are pointed out. Management of various textile wastes is also mentioned in this paper.

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Man-Made Fibre Industry

Major raw material for synthetic fibres is obtained from petrochemical feedstock and is commonly known as monomer whereas cellulose is the major raw material for viscose and acetate. The type and average consumption of major raw material for individual fibre is given in Table VI.

A large number of various chemicals, besides pulp or monomer, as the case may be, are required during the manufacture of each fibre. Ingredients include acetic acid, titanium dioxide, spin finish, catalyst, methyl acrylate or vinyl acetate, sulphuric acid, sodium hydroxide, carbon disulphide, Zinc, sodium sulphate, di-sodium sulphide, acetic anhydride, thermal stabilizer, light stabilizer, antioxidants etc.


Raw materialCellulose pulpCaprolactumDMT& EGACNPropylene
Average Consumption114011001100 & 42010001000
Table VI: Major Material Consumption for Man-Made Fibre (Kg/ton product)

ACN is toxic and as a consequence stringent measure in acrylic manufacturing plant is necessary to ensure that it does not contaminate liquid discharge. One of the major pollutants in viscose plant liquid effluent causing concern is the presence of zinc. The average consumption of zinc is in the range of 15 Kg/MT fibres. The zinc concentration in the effluent is on an average 15-40 mg/l [13].

Temperature (ºC)3032
Total Suspended Solid (mg/l)13881736
Total Dissolved Solid (mg/l)16001542
BOD, 5 days, 20ºC, mg/l619580
Volatile Solids (mg/l)384632
COD, mg/l14591680
Alkalinity (as CaCo3), mg/l350730
Table VII: Parameters of Waste Water Generated by Synthetic Fibre Industry

The average consumption and parameters for liquid effluent discharged by nylon and polyester industries are given in Table VII. In India, for nylon and polyester, the wastewater generated is on an average of 170 m3/MT and for viscose 1200 m3/MT, respectively.

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