The Potential of Marine micro-algae grown in Wastewater to remove Nutrients and Produce Biomass



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


Kenya Aquatica Journal


Abstract Wastewater is a free source of nutrients for microalgae cultivation as it offers an opportunity to produce biofuel hence, significantly lowering their production costs. Microalgae was cultured in wastewater to determine the optimal condition for nutrients removal and production of low-cost biomass. Three different microalgal cultures containing cyanobacteria (Oscillatoria sp.), chlorophyte (Chlorella sp.) and diatoms (Entomoneis sp.) were cultivated in various mixtures of wastewater in seawater, ranging from 0% to 60% volume by volume (v/v). A significant difference (p˂0.05) was recorded between the concentration of phosphates and nitrates before and after the experimental period for all the cultures. Removal of phosphates in the wastewater cultures dominated by Oscillatoria, Entomoneis and Chlorella ranged between 25.4%-86.3%, 14%-100% and 85.7%-100% respectively, while removal of nitrates ranged between 7.5%-64.8%, 8.5%-64.1% and 4.0-67.6% respectively. A significant difference (p˂0.05) was also recorded in the microalgae growth for the different wastewater concentrations. The cultures dominated with Chlorella showed highest biomass production at 60% wastewater concentration, while cultures with Entomoneis and Oscillatoria had highest productivity at 20% wastewater concentration. Seemingly, the optimal conditions of wastewater treatment and biomass production of microalgae depends on the species and nutrient availability.




microalgae, wastewater, nutrients, biomass


Swaleh, M., Abubakar, L., Mwaguni, S., Munga, D., & Okuku, E. (2022). The potential of marine micro-algae grown in wastewater to remove nutrients and produce biomass. A Scientific Journal of Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute.