In the present work, we tested the validity of using novel, bio-augmented, aerobic composting with carcass-degrading microorganisms for the ex situ stabilization of carcasses at pilot scale with previously poorly decomposed carcasses excavated from a 3-year old burial site. The significantly decreased chemical oxygen demand (COD, 160,000 mg/kg to 40,000 mg/kg) and inorganic nitrogen species (total nitrogen, 5000 mg/kg to 2000 mg/kg) indicated effective bio-stabilization of carcasses by bio-augmented composting. The subsequent germination assays and the quantitative characterization of potentially pathogenic bacteria using NGS (next-generation sequencing) showed that the burial-composting sequential system with the carcass-degrading microorganisms and mechanical agitation successfully reduced plant toxicity as well as microbial risk to human health, suggesting that the composting by-product is suitable for farming or/and landfill use(s).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law