Diverse industrial effluents may contain recalcitrant compounds such as chlorophenols. Besides, excessive use of pesticides in agriculture is a major cause of the appearance of chlorophenols in surface and groundwater. To mitigate and control the effects of chlorophenols in the environment, various methods have been developed for their elimination. Biological processes represent a sustainable and economical alternative that can lead to the mineralization of chlorophenols and be effective for the removal of these pollutants from different water bodies, such as rivers, groundwater, and wastewater. Some studies have reported that chlorophenols mineralization and nitrate reduction may simultaneously be performed. Other works have suggested that a reductive dechlorination occurs such as the first step and later, the phenol formed is subsequently mineralized by denitrification. However, the published information can be confusing as the denitrifying process is often associated with the sole nitrate consumption without corroborating the total reduction of nitrate to N2. Additionally, there are alternative systems that combine biological process with a chemical or electrochemical process for chlorophenols removal. This chapter focuses on the advances accomplished in the study of the removal of chlorophenols under denitrifying conditions with the aim of having a clearer panorama of the treatment alternatives that can be applied for treatment of this type of effluents.
Part of the book: Nitrification and Denitrification