Applied sciences

Archives of Environmental Protection


Archives of Environmental Protection | 2020 | vol. 46 | No 4 |

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Due to the increased environmental awareness, green chemistry becomes an important element of environmental protection. Unfortunately, it generate specific environmental costs, which are related to the use of toxic chemical reagents and waste generation. The most frequently determined analytes include inorganic and organic anions and cations. The methods used so far for their analysis in water, sewage and various other types of samples are increasingly being replaced by ion chromatography methods. This paper presents the most important advantages and limitations of ion chromatography in the context of “green analytical chemistry.” The progress of ion chromatography in gradient and isocratic elution, capillary and multidimensional ion chromatography, as well as miniaturization and methods of sample preparation for analysis, which allow to classify this technique as green analytical chemistry, are described.

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Authors and Affiliations

Rajmund Michalski
Paulina Pecyna-Utylska
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In environmental matrices there are mixtures of parent drug and its metabolites. The majority of research is focused on the biological activity and toxic effect of diclofenac (DCF), there is little research on the biological activity of DCF metabolites and their mixtures. The study focused on the assessment of the biological impact of DCF, its metabolites 4’-hydroxydiclofenac (4’-OHDCF) and 5-hydroxydiclofenac (5-OHDCF) and their mixtures on E. coli strains. The biological effects of tested chemicals were evaluated using the following: E. coli K-12 cells viability assay, the inhibition of bacteria culture growth, ROS (reactive oxygene species) generation and glutathione (GSH) content estimation. Moreover, we examined the influence of the mixture of DCF with caffeic acid (CA) on E. coli cells viability. Our results showed the strongest impact of the mixtures of DCF with 4’-OHDCF and 5-OHDCF on E. coli SM biosensor strains in comparison to parent chemicals. Similar results were obtained in viability test, where we noticed the highest reduction in E. coli cell viability after bacteria incubation with the mixtures of DCF with 4’-OHDCF and 5-OHDCF. Similarly, these mixtures strongly inhibited the growth of E. coli culture. We also found synergistic effect of caffeic acid in combination with DCF on E. coli cells viability. After bacteria treatment with the mixture of DCF and its metabolites we also noted the strongest amount of ROS generation and GSH depletion in E. coli culture. It suggests that oxidative stress is the most important mechanism underlying the activity of DCF and its metabolites.

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Authors and Affiliations

Marzena Matejczyk
Piotr Ofman
Katarzyna Dąbrowska
Renata Świsłocka
Włodzimierz Lewandowski
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This study aimed to determine the influence of the electric current density on the rate of nitrogen compounds removal (rN) and the specific rate of denitrification (rD) in a rotating electrochemical disk contractor (RECDC) and a rotating electro-biological disk contactor (REBDC). In REBDC and RECDC, the cathode consisted of disks with immobilized biomass and disk, from which biofilm was periodically removed, respectively. An aluminum anode was mounted in contactor chambers. The study was conducted using synthetic wastewater with characteristics similar to wastewater from soilless cultivation of tomatoes. The first stage of the study determined rN and rD in the RECDC. The second stage determined rN and rD in the REBDC. Four hydraulic retention times (HRT) were tested: 4 h, 8 h, 12 h, and 24 h, with electric current densities of 0.63 A/m2, 1.25 A/m2, 2.50 A/m2, 5.00 A/m2, and 10.00 A/m2. In RECDC, a linear dependency was observed between rN and current density in the examined HRTs, whereas in REBDC, a logarithmic dependency was confirmed between rN and current density. In both contactors, an exponential dependency was observed between rD and current density. The specific rate of denitrification decreased when the current density and HRT were increased. The study showed that, in both contactors, the rate of total nitrogen removal increased when the current density was increased and the HRT was decreased.

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Authors and Affiliations

Joanna Rodziewicz
Wojciech Janczukowicz
Artur Mielcarek
Kamil Bryszewski
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Operations conducted by petroleum industry generate an entire range of drilling waste. The chemical composition of drilling waste and its toxicity depend primarily on the geological and technological conditions of drilling, the type of drilled rock deposits and on the type and composition of the drilling mud used. In the course of drilling operations, drilling fluids are in constant contact with bacteria, fungi and other organisms infecting the mud. Pioneer species, capable of surviving and using the resources of this specific environment, are selected. For this reason, the effectiveness of microbiota survival on different types of spent drilling muds and in different dilutions with brown soil was measured. Spent drilling muds samples came from drilling operations in various regions of Poland, e.g. Subcarpathia, the Polish Lowland and Pomerania regions. Oxygen consumption after 96 h was around 20 μg·g‒1 dry mass in soil or soil/drilling water-based mud mixture. Soil mixes contained 10 wt% synthetic base, mud had a higher oxygen consumption – 38 μg · g‒1 dry mass. Oxygen consumption decreases sharply as the content of the spent synthetic base mud fraction increases. A higher concentration of spent SBM (35 wt%) reduced the aerobic metabolism by slightly more than 50%. A high concentration of reduced carbon decreased the respiratory quotient (RQ) value to 0.7. All the researched drilling waste shows microbiological activity. At the full concentration of drilling fluids and non-dilution options, the chemical composition (salinity, inhibitors, etc.) strongly inhibits microbiota development and consequently, respiration

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Authors and Affiliations

Aleksandra Jamrozik
Roman Żurek
Andrzej Gonet
Rafał Wiśniowski
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The article presents the research into hygienizing process of chicken manure using calcium peroxide (CaO2) as an environmentally friendly biological deactivation agent. The influence of the addition of CaO2 to chicken manure on the bioavailability of phosphorus was also analyzed. The process of biological deactivation using CaO2, CaO and Ca(OH)2 agents was analyzed applying the disk diffusion method. To optimize the effect of the hygienizing parameters, (CaO2 concentration, pH, temperature and time) on the reduction of Enterobacteriaceae count the Taguchi method was applied. The content of bioavailable phosphorus was measured with the Egner-Riehm method and determined with spectrophotometry. The reduction in bacterial count followed an increase in the concentration of CaO2 in a sample. The optimal experimental conditions (CaO2=10.5 wt.%, pH=9.5, T=40°C, t=180 h) enabled a significant decrease in the Enterobacteriaceae count, from 107 cfu/g to 102 cfu/g. Analysis of the samples with Egner-Riehm method showed that the phosphorus content decreased with the addition of biocide CaO2: from 26.6 mg/l (for 3.5 wt.%) to 3.5 mg/l (for 10.5 wt.%). These values were slightly higher than the content of phosphorus deactivated with Ca(OH)2 i.e., from 11.25 mg/l (for 3.5 wt.%) to 4.49 mg/l (for 10.5 wt.%). The application of CaO2 for hygienizing chicken manure enables effective reduction of Enterobacteriaceae count to an acceptable level (below 1000 cfu/g). In comparison with the traditional techniques of hygienization, the application of CaO2 has a positive effect on the recovery of bioavailable phosphorus.

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Authors and Affiliations

Angelika Więckol-Ryk
Barbara Białecka
Maciej Thomas
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The anammox (anaerobic ammonia oxidation) process is one of the most efficient processes of nitrogen removal from wastewater. Although there are some applications of anammox-based technologies, it is still difficult to apply this process widely because of the high optimal temperature around 30–40°C. Thus, the main objective of this study was to evaluate the short-term effects of MnO2 on the anammox and nitrification process activity at a wide range of temperatures between 10 and 30°C, using statistical methods based on the central composite design (CCD). The influence of MnO2 on anammox and nitrification activity, suspended biomass from the laboratory-scale sequencing batch reactor (SBR), and activated sludge from WWTP, respectively, was used. MnO2 concentration range was set between 15 and 85 mg/L, and the temperature range was set between 10 and 30°C. Anammox and nitrification process activity was measured based on the batch test and oxygen uptake rate (OUR), respectively. The results were statistically analyzed. Results revealed that nanoparticles can slightly improve anammox activity by several percent, by up to 10%, but in most cases MnO2 influence was insignificant. The optimal concentration for the anammox stimulation at temperatures below 20°C was evaluated between 40 and 60 mg/L, corresponding to 36 and 56 mg/g VSS. Manganese oxides contribution in the nitrogen removal processes was proved and they should be considered in the field of the anammox process. Thus, further studies are suggested to investigate the long-term effects of MnO2 on the low-temperature anammox process, overcoming possibility of inhibition

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Authors and Affiliations

Mariusz Tomaszewski
Filip Gamoń
Grzegorz Cema
Aleksandra Ziembińska-Buczyńska
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In Mexico, one of the principal natural resources is oil, however, the activity related to it has generated hydrocarbon spills on agricultural soils. The aim of this study was to evaluate the biodegradability of diesel by means of indigenous bacteria isolated from agricultural soil contaminated with 68 900 mg kg-1 diesel. We examined indigenous bacterial strains in agricultural soils contaminated with diesel from Acatzingo, Puebla, Mexico. We performed a physicochemical soil characterization, and a bacterial population quantification favoring sporulated bacteria of the genera Bacillus and Paenibacillus taken from the study site. Six bacterial strains were isolated. The identification was made based on the 16S rRNA gene and API systems. The tolerance and biodegradation capacity in diesel were determined at 4 000 to 24 000 mg L-1 of diesel. Residual concentrations of diesel were determined by GC-FID. Soil contaminated with diesel alters the concentrations of organic matter, phosphorus and nitrogen. Analysis of soil samples showed heat resistant bacterial populations of 106 cfu g-1 dry soil. Six strains from soil pollution were identified – Pseudomonas stutzeri M1CH1, Bacillus pumilus M1CH1b, Bacillus cereus M1CH10, Bacillus subtilis M1CH15a, and Paenibacillus lautus strains M1CH19 and M1CH27. These bacteria showed different degradation behavior. Bacillus pumilus M1HC1b and Paenibacillus lautus M1CH27 use diesel oil as the sole carbon source. Bacillus pumilus degraded high concentrations of diesel (24 000 mg L-1), while for Paenibacillus lautus it became toxic and the degradation was less.

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Authors and Affiliations

Amparo Mauricio-Gutiérrez
Rocío Machorro-Velázquez
Teresita Jiménez-Salgado
Candelario Vázquez-Crúz
María Patricia Sánchez-Alonso
Armando Tapia-Hernández
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The main objective of presented research work was the assessment of the impact of reduced straw content, as organic carbon source, on the course of sewage sludge composting process. During the research work performed in industrial conditions, the composting process going in periodically overturned windrows differing in proportion of dehydrated sludge, straw and structural material being 4:1:1 and 8:1:2 respectively, was observed. The consequence of increase of sludge concentration with relation to straw was decrease of C:N ratio in the input material from 11.5 to 8.5. The following parameters were analyzed as indicators for the assessment of the composting process: contents of fulvic acids (FA), humic acids (HA), lignin, cellulose and hemicellulose as well as absorbance in UV/VIS (λ=280, 465 and 665 nm) range. The results obtained have indicated that the increase of sludge content extends the elevated temperature (T>50°C) period from 42 days to approximately 65 days. Our tests did not confirm that limitation of straw content added to sewage sludge had any adverse effect on the course of composting. PI index (HA/FA), which qualifies the compost as mature in the first case – No 1, exceeds limit value of 3.6 on the 83rd day whereas, in the second case No 2, on the 48th day.

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Authors and Affiliations

Robert Sidełko
Bartosz Walendzik
Małgorzata Smuga-Kogut
Beata Janowska
Kazimierz Szymański
Anna Głowacka
Aleksandra Leśniańska
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Hydropower use of watercourses has tangible consequences for the environment, society and economy. Based on a literature review and their own research, the authors present current data on changes in the ecological status of waters within run-of-river and reservoir hydropower plants, i.e. changes in biological elements (benthic macroinvertebrates, plankton, ichthyofauna, macrophytes), as well as hydromorphological and physicochemical changes. Previous researchers have noted that the impact of hydropower use of rivers on ecological status of those rivers is extensive, consisting of, among others, changes in species structure and populations of macrophytes, benthic macroinvertebrates, plankton and ichthyofauna (positive as well as negative changes), algal blooms due to increased turbidity, constrained migration of water organisms, changes in temperature within hydroelectric power plants, the phenomenon of supersaturation, eutrophication, changes in hydrological conditions (e.g., increased amplitudes of diurnal water levels and their consequent annual reduction), and increased erosion below the damming and deposition of bottom sediments on the damming barriers. In addition to such changes in ecological status, hydropower use also has a visible impact on socio-economic conditions (e.g., living standards of the population) and the environment (e.g., quality of bottom sediments and biodiversity). The article offers an assessment of the impact of hydropower use of rivers on ecological status (biological, hydromorphological, physicochemical elements and hydrological conditions of such rivers), society, economy and environment; it also proposes a research scheme to assess the impact of hydropower structures.

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Authors and Affiliations

Paweł Tomczyk
Mirosław Wiatkowski
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In water systems, both biologically and chemically synthesized molecules may reduce environmental quality and influence essential ecosystems structure and function. These substances include aldehydes from various sources, also those relates to the activities of primary producers. The focus of the study was vertical distribution of several aliphatic aldehydes and phytoplankton biomass in an urban lake in Poznań (Wielkopolska Lakeland, Poland) under human pressure. Water samples were collected from surface lake to bottom, every 2 m. Plankton was analyzed under inverted and epifluorescence microscopes. The biomass was estimated from microscopic measurements and cell volume of each species. Thirteen aldehydes and acetone were analyzed using gas chromatography with an electron capture detector after derivatization and extraction processes. Aldehydes concentrations varied between 32.7 and 346.2 μg L-1. Formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and propanal were characterized by the highest concentration both at low and high phytoplankton biomass. Phytoplankton biomass included prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, and ranged between 0.25 and 2.94 mg L-1. Cryptophytes and diatoms were often the most important components of phytoplankton communities, although in some cases the haptophytes and dinophytes comprised a much higher proportion. Total aldehyde concentration was significantly correlated with total phytoplankton biomass (r=0.705, p <0.05), and even higher correlation was observed between acetone and phytoplankton biomass (r=0.917). This indicates phytoplankton as an important source of carbonyl compounds in surface waters. Thus, the knowledge of different aspects of their origin and distribution in the lake is important both in ecological research and in water management.

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Authors and Affiliations

Elżbieta Szeląg-Wasielewska
Agata Dąbrowska
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The research determined the concentrations of selected polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in water and sediments of Kłodnica River reservoirs and distribution depending on number of rings, ecotoxicological impact on studied ecosystems and possible sources of origin. Samples were subjected to qualitative and quantitative analysis by gas chromatography coupled with a GC-MS mass detector, using a ZB-5MS column and electron ionization. The sum of 16 PAHs in water ranged 0.111–0.301 μg/L (mean 0.200 μg/L) in Dzierżno Duże, 0.0410–0.784 μg/L (mean 0.303 μg/L) in Dzierżno Małe and 0.0920–1.52 μg/L (mean 0.596 μg/L) in Pławniowice. While in sediments respectively: 17.5–37.2 μg/g (mean 26.8 μg/g), 4.33–8.81 μg/g (6.43 μg/g) and 2.27–9.50 μg/g (5.30 μg/g). The concentration of PAHs in sediments of reservoirs, which spatial management of the catchment area accounts for over 90% of agricultural and forest land, was up to eight times lower than in sediments of the reservoir which is 69%, while built-up and transport areas are 24%. In sediments of Dzierżno Małe and Pławniowice PAHs with 5 and 6 rings dominate, while in Dzierżno Duże – 2 and 3 rings. Higher concentrations of PAHs with higher molecular weight, found in the bottom water layers, confirm the role of the sedimentation process in the transport of these compounds in reservoirs. Assessment of sediment quality, based on ecotoxicological criteria, showed that PAHs may cause toxic effects in Dzierżno Duże, while in Dzierżno Małe and Pławniowice can cause sporadic adverse effects. The likely source of PAHs in reservoirs is low emissions.

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Authors and Affiliations

Alina Pohl
Maciej Kostecki
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The aim of this study was an assessment of feasibility of conversion of sewage holding (SH) tanks to rainwater harvesting (RWH) tanks in Poland. Such a conversion may partly solve the problem of water scarcity for irrigation of plants in individual small gardens and reduce tap water consumption. Seven methods of RWH tanks sizing were applied to an example of a small harvesting system of the roof area equal to the garden irrigation area of 100 m2 for three different irrigation doses. A new criterion was introduced to optimize the tank capacity. Economic optimization was provided for new RWH tanks and for the tanks adapted from abandoned SH tanks. Results obtained for a system sited in west-central Poland in an average year have shown that design capacity of RWH tanks varied markedly between sizing methods. The conversion of SH tanks to RWH tanks is profitable, especially for irrigation due to scarcity of water in relatively dry west-central regions. Conversion of individual SH tanks in a good technical state to RWH tanks is relatively simple and cheap. The potential increase in storage volume due to the conversion of individual SH tanks to RWH tanks could reach all over Poland 215–350 dam3 per year, and individually can save up to 18–25% of total annual water use.

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Authors and Affiliations

Sadżide Murat-Błażejewska
Ryszard Błażejewski

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Instructions for authors

Instructions for Authors

Archives of Environmental Protection is a quarterly published jointly by the Institute of Environmental Engineering of the Polish Academy of Sciences and the Committee of Environmental Engineering of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Thanks to the cooperation with outstanding scientists from all over the world we are able to provide our readers with carefully selected, most interesting and most valuable texts, presenting the latest state of research in the field of engineering and environmental protection.


The Journal principally accepts for publication original research papers covering such topics as:

- Air quality, air pollution prevention and treatment;

- Wastewater treatment and utilization;

- Waste management;

- Hydrology and water quality, water treatment;

- Soil protection and remediation;

- Transformations and transport of organic/inorganic pollutants in the environment;

- Measurement techniques used in environmental engineering and monitoring;

- Other topics directly related to environmental engineering and environment protection.

The Journal accepts also authoritative and critical reviews of the current state of knowledge in the topic directly relating to the environment protection.

If unsure whether the article is within the scope of the Journal, please send an abstract via e-mail to:

Preparation of the manuscript

The following are the requirements for manuscripts submitted for publication:

• The manuscript (with illustrations, tables, abstract and references) should not exceed 20 pages. In case the manuscript exceeds the required number of pages, we suggest contacting the Editor.

• The manuscript should be written in English.

• The manuscript ought to be submitted in doc or docx format in three files:

– text.doc – file containing the entire text, without title, keywords, authors names and affiliations, and without tables and figures;

– figures.doc – file containing illustrations with legends;

– tables.doc – file containing tables with legends;

• The text should be prepared in A4 format, 2.5 cm margins, 1.5 spaced, preferable using Time New Roman font with no less than 12 point. The text should be divided into sections and subsections according to general rules of manuscript editing. The proposed place of tables and figures insertion should be marked in the text.

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• Tables should always be divided into columns. When there are many results presented in the table it should also be divided into lines.

• References should be cited in the text of an article by providing the name and publication year in brackets, e.g. (Nowak 2019). When a cited paper has two authors, both surnames connected with the word “and” should be provided, e.g. (Nowak and Kowalski 2019). When a cited paper has more than one author, surname of its first author, abbreviation ‘et al.’ and publication year should be provided, e.g. (Kowalski et al. 2019). When there are more than two publications cited in one place they should be divided with coma, e.g. (Kowalski et al. 2019, Nowak 2019, Nowak and Kowalski 2019). Internet sources should be cited like other texts - providing the name and publication year in brackets.

• References should be listed at the end of the article ordered alphabetically by surname of the first author. References should be made according to the following rules:

1. Journal:

Surnames and initials. (publication year). Title of the article, Journal Name, volume, number, pages, DOI.

For example:

Nowak, S.W., Smith, A.J. & Taylor, K.T. (2019). Title of the article, Archives of Environmental Protection, 10, 2, pp. 93–98, DOI: 10.24425/aep.2019.126330.

2. Book:

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For example:

Kraszewski, J. & Kinecki, K. (2019). Title of book, Work & Sudies, Zabrze 2019.

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Surnames and initials of text authors. (publishing year). Title of cited chapter, in: Title of the book, Surnames and initials of editor(s). (Ed.)/(Eds.). Publisher, Place, pages.

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Reynor, J. & Taylor, K.T. (2019). Title of chapter, in: Title of the cited book, Kaźmierski, I. & Jasiński, C. (Eds.). Work & Studies, Zabrze, pp. 145–189.

4. Internet sources:

Surnames and initials or the name of the institution which published the text. (publication year). Title, (website address (accessed on)).

For example:

Kowalski, M. (2018). Title, ( (03.12.2018)).

5. Patents:

Orszulik, E. (2009). Palenisko fluidalne, Patent polski: nr PL20070383311 20070910 z 16 marca 2009.

Smith, I.M. (1988). U.S. Patent No. 123,445. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

6. Materials published in language other than English:

Titles of cited materials should be translated into English. Information of the language the materials were published in should be provided at the end.

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Nowak, S.W. & Taylor, K.T. (2019). Title of article, Journal Name, 10, 2, pp. 93–98, DOI: 10.24425/aep.2019.126330. (in Polish)

Not more than 30 references should be cited in the original research paper.

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By submitting the manuscript Author(s) warrant(s) that the article has not been previously published and is not under consideration by another journal. Authors claim responsibility and liability for the submitted article. The manuscripts should be submitted on-line using the Editorial System available at Authors are asked to propose at least 4 potential reviewers, including 2 from Poland, together with their e-mail addresses. The journal does not have article processing charges (APCs) nor article submission charges.

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All the submitted articles are assessed by the Editorial Board. If positively assessed by at least two editors, Editor in Chief, along with department editors selects two independent reviewers from recognized authorities in the discipline. Reviewers receive a text of the article (without personal data of Authors) and review forms applicable in the journal. In justified cases, reviewers receive additional questions regarding the article. Review process usually lasts from 1 to 4 months.

After completion of the review process Authors are informed of the results and - if both reviews are positive - asked to correct the text according to reviewers’ comments. Next, the revised work is verified by the editorial staff for factual and editorial content.

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The manuscript is accepted for publication on grounds of the opinions of independent reviewers and approval of Editorial Board. Authors are informed about the decision and also asked to pay processing charges and to send completed declaration of the transfer of copyright to the editorial office.

Proofreading and Author Correction

All articles published in the Archives of Environmental Protection go through professional proofreading process. If there are too many language errors that prevent understanding of the text, the article is sent back to Authors with a request to correct the indicated fragments or - in extreme cases – to re-translate the text.

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Archives of Environmental Protection jest czasopismem wydawanym w wolnym dostępie na licencji CC BY-NC-SA 4.0.

Archives of Environmental Protection is an open access journal with all content available with no charge in full text version. The journal content is available under the licencse CC BY-NC-SA 4.

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