2006 Volume 21 Issue 2 Pages 122-129
Thailand is the world leader in natural rubber production and export. Intermediate products from natural rubber industries include ribbed smoked sheets (RSS) , air dried sheets (ADS) , block rubber, crepe rubber, and concentrated rubber latex. In these production processes, many environmental problems arise. These include air, water, and odor pollutions. In this article, environmental problems and existing control techniques in each rubber production are reviewed. In rubber sheet drying industry, main concern is the smoke particles from fuel wood burning because of the presence of hazardous components such as PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) associated with the particles. The PAH concentration is very high in the workspace and this could have adverse effect on workers' health. Moreover, the wastewater in rubber drying cooperatives is not treated properly. Appropriate technologies are needed in dealing with both smoke particles and wastewater problems. In rubber latex industry, main concern is wastewater but it is generally well treated. The odor problem arising from ammonia used for latex preservation remains, however, unsolved. In rubber glove industry, main problem is the wastewater and it is treated the same way as in rubber latex industry.