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2022 Outstanding Achievements in Environmental Science & Technology Award:
08:00am - 11:20am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Bryan Brooks, Organizer, Presider; Dr. Wonyong Choi, Organizer; Margaret Mills, Organizer; Shane Snyder, Organizer; Julie Zimmerman, Organizer
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid
Division/Committee: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry

Environmental Science & Technology, Environmental Science & Technology Letters, ACS ES&T Engineering and ACS ES&T Water are continuing their annual symposium series with this ENVR session highlighting the work of award-winning environmental science researchers. The invited speakers include journal editors, best paper award winners, and the winner of the 2022 Outstanding Achievements in Environmental Science & Technology Award, which will be presented during the session.

Tuesday
Introductory Remarks
08:00am - 08:20am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid

Tuesday
3654778 - Phytoremediation, bioaugmentation and the plant microbiome
08:20am - 09:00am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Jerald Schnoor, Presenter
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid
Phytoremediation, using plants to help clean the environment, has become mainstream practice over the past 25 years. Usually microbes in the rhizosphere of trees and grasses provide the ecosystem service of biodegrading target organic contaminants to less toxic or (even) inocuous end-products. Sometimes, the plant itself provides the enzymatic power for biodegradation of contaminants following uptake by roots and translocation to shoots/stems or leaves. Plants and microbes have co-evolved through symbiotic relationships that include nutrient fixation and bioavailability, exudates as substrates, plant protection from pathogens, and microbial production of plant growth hormones. Endophytic microbes which naturallly live in, on, and around the plant may sometimes be utilized to facilitate biodegradation of xenobioitics.Such interactions facilitate transformation of organic compounds in soil and groundwater, either through co-metabolic or metabolic degradation of contaminants. Fertilization or biostimulation of rhizosphere microorganisms has long been known as a strategy for enhanced bioremediation, while bioaugmentation is another strategy in which specific microbes are added to the rhizosphere environment (or subtracted?) to facilitate biodegradation. But how does one ensure that the desirable bioaugmented microorganisms will survive in the complex microbiome of the subsurface environment?

Here, we consider how to improve the survivability of target rhizosphere microbes to utilize xenobiotic organic compounds either as substrates via metabolism (as a sole carbon and energy source) or in fortuitous co-metabolic reactions where auxiliary substrates are introduced, or when plant exudates serve as primary substrates. Much like the use of probiotics in the human gut, we are trying to understand how to modify the plant microbiome into favorable community assemblages to accomplish the overall purpose of phytoremediation. Microbiome editing of the plant rhizosphere is in its infancy as a phytotechnology.

In this paper, we discuss the problem of 1,4-dioxane and chlorinated solvents as co-contaminants in a system planted with hybrid poplar and bioaugmented with bacteria capable of metabolic degradation. Bioenrichment with vitamins, introduction of auxiliary substrates, and establishment of consortia are investigated.

Tuesday
3666012 - Evolution of research on next-generation desalination and water purification membranes
09:00am - 09:40am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid
Water scarcity is one of the greatest global crises of our time. Increasing water supply beyond what is available from the hydrological cycle can be achieved by seawater desalination and wastewater reuse. Highly effective, low-cost, robust membrane-based technologies for desalination and wastewater reuse are needed, with minimal impact on the environment. However, progress in current state-of-the-art water purification membranes has been limited. We will critically discuss and evaluate recent research efforts in the past 15 years to (i) lower energy consumption for water desalination by improving membrane water permeability, (ii) reduce the efficiency of water desalination via increased water-salt selectivity, and (iii) enhance membrane ion selectivity for applications at the water-energy nexus. The presentation will focus on the emerging area of ion selectivity where high precision ion separation is desired. We will highlight how insights from nanofluidics and ion-selective biological channels establish the basis for a new class of membranes with ion-ion selectivity. A few examples will be provided to elucidate the mechanisms of ion transport and selectivity in membranes with sub-nanometer pores. These include the transport of monovalent ions in reverse osmosis membranes and the role of host-guest chemistry in controlling the electivity of divalent metal ions. We will conclude with a discussion on research directions and critical challenges for developing ion-selective membranes
Tuesday
Discussion
09:40am - 09:50am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid

Tuesday
Intermission
09:50am - 10:05am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid

Tuesday
3648719 - Paper-based device for rapid and on-site wastewater surveillance
10:05am - 10:25am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Dr Zhugen Yang, Presenter
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid
Wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE)has emerged as a powerful tool for early warning public health. However, it remains challenging for analysis of wastewater in particular for rapid and on-site detection, which is a highly demand for track down the infections. Rapid sensors are of significant importance for both chemicals (e.g. illicit drugs) and microbial analysis in wastewater (e.g. infection including SARS-CoV-2 for early warning of a pandemic). Here we present a low-cost, deployable paper-based biosensor device for rapid analysis of chemicals and pathogens for WBE. Following the demonstration of the paper-based device for field-testing of infectious in Indian local farm and for malaria testing in a primary school in Uganda in Africa, we will further show this device for the rapid analysis of pathogens in water and wastewater in a low resource setting (e.g., in quarantine hotel around London Heathrow airport). The device utilised a paper microfluidic for sample preparation and extract nucleic acid from various wastewater samples, followed by isothermal amplification for species-specific pathogen detection with a visual dye for rapid readout. This enables to capture of images with a mobile phone camera for a semi-quantification. This paper-based device is currently developing to trace the source of SARS-CoV-2 in a local treatment plant and near-source tracking for early warning of the pandemic, as part of a UK national wastewater epidemiology surveillance programme (N-WESP) for COVID-19.
Tuesday
3656790 - Microbial electrochemical monitoring of volatile fatty acids during anaerobic digestion
10:25am - 10:45am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Yifeng Zhang, Presenter
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid
Volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentration is known as an important indicator to control and optimize anaerobic digestion (AD) process. In this study, an innovative VFA biosensor was developed based on the principle of a microbial desalination cell. The correlation between current densities and VFA concentrations was first evaluated with synthetic digestate. Two linear relationships were observed between current densities and VFA levels from 1 to 30 mM (0.04 to 8.50 mA/m2, R2 = 0.97) and then from 30 to 200 mM (8.50 to 10.80 mA/m2, R2 = 0.95). The detection range was much broader than that of other existing VFA biosensors. The biosensor had no response to protein and lipid which are frequently found along with VFAs in organic waste streams from AD, suggesting the selective detection of VFAs. The current displayed different responses to VFA levels when different ionic strengths and external resistances were applied, though linear relationships were always observed. Finally, the biosensor was further explored with real AD effluents and the results did not show significance differences with those measured by GC. The simple and efficient biosensor showed promising potential for online, inexpensive, and reliable measurement of VFA levels during AD and other anaerobic processes.
Tuesday
3649215 - Enhancing scientific support for implementing the multilateral environmental agreements on chemicals and waste: Mapping policy needs for scientific evidence
10:45am - 11:05am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Zhanyun Wang, Presenter
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid
Multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) play a fundamental role in achieving sound management of chemicals and waste at the global level. For example, 30 chemicals or groups of chemicals have been listed under the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) for global elimination or restriction. However, as the MEAs have grown more complex over time, it is increasingly challenging for Parties, particularly low- and middle-income countries, to develop and implement national measures in accordance with the MEAs’ provisions and decisions. An online survey under the joint “From Science to Action” initiative under the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions identified several major science–policy gaps, including (1) data gaps and the lack of capacity to generate data in low- and middle-income countries, (2) the lack of national capacity to review and assess information, and (3) challenges in knowledge translating and making scientific information accessible to policy- and decision-makers.
This presentation builds on a series of reviews that analyze detailed needs for policy-relevant science under several MEAs on chemicals and waste. The goal is to highlight these needs in order to foster timely research and scientific support for implementing the MEAs. The target audience is not only scientists and practitioners from various disciplines of natural and social sciences and from all sectors (academia, civil society organizations, industry and governmental institutions), but also funding agencies. In brief, it discusses needs for scientific evidence related to existing policy processes set by the MEAs’ provisions and decisions, including both needs relating to the general implementation matters and needs relating to specific chemicals or implementation matters with specific policy time windows. Also, it looks into needs for scientific evidence that go beyond existing policy processes, but are nevertheless important in order to improve the overall effectiveness of the MEAs’ implementation. It further provides practical guidance on how scientists and practitioners may provide their support to the MEAs’ implementation, followed by a brief outlook.

Tuesday
Discussion
11:05am - 11:15am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid

Tuesday
Concluding Remarks
11:15am - 11:20am USA / Canada - Pacific - March 22, 2022 | Location: Gallery 2 (Omni San Diego Hotel)
Division: [ENVR] Division of Environmental Chemistry
Session Type: Oral - Hybrid