Anaerobic digestion is a process in which microorganisms convert organic matter into biogas in the absence of oxygen. It is an energy-efficient process that is typically utilized to treat high-strength wastewater containing high concentrations of biodegradable organic matter (measured as BOD, COD, and/or TSS). An anaerobic system can be used for pretreatment prior to discharging to a municipal wastewater treatment plant or used for the treatment and reduction of solids generated in the activated sludge process.
Anaerobic processes use substantially less energy, require less chemicals, and incur lower sludge handling costs compared to aerobic treatment options. In addition, the biogas produced in the anaerobic process is a source of renewable energy that can be used to displace fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas, or to generate electricity.
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