Document Type


Date of Original Version



Civil and Environmental Engineering


Acid mine drainage (AMD) is a persistent and extensive source of water pollution and ecological degradation. Cotreating munici- pal wastewater (MWW) with AMD using existing infrastructure at conventional wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) may serve as a potential option for AMD abatement. However, commonly elevated iron and aluminum concentrations and low pH of AMD could negatively impact various processes at a WWTP. The focus of this mini review was on determining how cotreating MWW with AMD could impact the solids handling processes at a WWTP. While no studies have explored the solids that could be generated during cotreatment in a WWTP, numerous articles separately discuss the solids generated during AMD or MWW treatment. Reviewing this literature revealed that iron and aluminum, common metals in AMD, are already present in MWW sludge and typically benefit most solids handling processes. The addition of AMD would elevate iron and aluminum concentration but would likely result in improved sludge dewatering, removal of odor-causing compounds during processing, and a decreased bioavailability of trace metals and water-soluble P in land applications. This review concludes that cotreating MWW with moderate to low volumes (<50%) of AMD at WWTPs will have minimal impact on, and likely improve, solids handling processes.