Pollution Research Paper

Vol 39, Issue 2, 2020; Page No.(268-277 )

POLYPROPYLENE DEGRADATION POTENTIAL OF MICROBES ISOLATED FROM SOLID WASTE DUMPING SITE

PRAMILA OLIYA, SANJEEV SINGH1, NAVODIT GOEL, UDAI PRATAP SINGH AND ABHINAV KR. SRIVASTAVA

Abstract

Modernisation has increased the demand and uncontrolled use of plastics (polypropylene) in day to day activities. Lengthy natural degradation time of plastic causes soil, water and air pollution and serious environmental and health hazards. The physical and chemical methods for plastic disposal have proved to be ineffective. Hence, alternative methods of plastic degradation which are faster and eco-friendly are being considered to serve the purpose. In recent studies, several fungi and bacteria have been observed to perform such plastic degradation. Keeping this in view, the present study aimed at analysing the potential of bacteria and fungus in their efficacy to decompose plastic and convert it into inorganic harmless compounds. The dumping site soil around the Jalandhar city of Punjab region was the source of potential plastic degrading bacteria and fungus. The isolated bacteria and fungus which showed plastic decomposing properties were identified as Staphylococcus sp. and Aspergillus fumigatus respectively. The ability of polypropylene degradation by these microbes was tested under In vitro broth conditions over an incubation period of 2, 4 and 6 months. The biodegradation was calculated in terms of weight loss percentage of the polymer. Both the microbes demonstrated promising capacity to degrade plastic under laboratory conditions. Upto 18.08% degradation of plastic material was achieved by the isolated microbes. The scanning electron microscopic analysis of the residual polymer after microbial action on it revealed the presence of cracks and porosity on plastic strip surface and its FTIR analysis confirmed the stretching of functional group, thus validating the decomposition of polypropylene.

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