Integrated CO2 capture, wastewater treatment and biofuel production by microalgae culturing - A review

Shaikh A. Razzak, Mohammad M. Hossain, Rahima A. Lucky, Amarjeet S. Bassi, Hugo De Lasa*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

464 Scopus citations


Algae have recently received growing attention given its prospects as a source of renewable energy and its potential for CO2 capture. Algae culture is of increasing value given that: (i) algae can be cultivated on non-agricultural land using wastewater, (ii) algae can provide a high yield on a per unit of light irradiated area, (iii) algae growth requires CO2 and nutrients that can be obtained from wastewater and fossil fuel combustion and (iv) algae contains high oil and starch making possible the production of high quality biodiesel. Thus, algae culture can contribute to CO2 fixation, wastewater treatment and can be a source of bioenergy. This article presents a critical review, focusing on various microalgae species that consume CO2 and nutrients from wastewater, and provide high quality biofuel. In this respect, a number of relevant topics are discussed in this review: (a) the media for algae culture, (b) the photobioreactor, (c) the associated wastewater treatment processes, (d) the CO2 capture mechanism and (e) microalgal harvesting. This review also considers various aspects of the biomass processing such as (a) lipid extraction, (b) thermodynamics of the produced biomass conversion, (c) biomass gasification, (d) biodiesel production, (e) catalysts, (f) reaction pathways/mechanisms and (g) reaction kinetics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)622-653
Number of pages32
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
StatePublished - 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge the support provided by NSTIP-KACST for project NSTIP # 11-ENV1644-04 . Authors also like to thank King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM) and The University of Western Ontario. Authors would like to acknowledge Ms. F. de Lasa for her assistance on the preparation of this manuscript.


  • Biofuel
  • CO capture
  • Digester effluent
  • Microlgae
  • Photobioreactor
  • Transesterification
  • Wastewater treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


Dive into the research topics of 'Integrated CO2 capture, wastewater treatment and biofuel production by microalgae culturing - A review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this