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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter July 22, 2021

Chemical removal of m-cresol: a critical review

  • Yi Yang ORCID logo EMAIL logo , Xiyi Li , Huiqi Zhu , Xuhui Xu and Lulu Bao


m-Cresol containing wastewater has generally become a globally environmental issue due to its refractory and high toxicity towards plants, animals and human being. The development of m-cresol related industries increases the risk of excessive m-cresol discharge, making high efficiency methods to treat m-cresol an urgent topic in both economic and environmental aspects. This review focuses on the chemical treatment methods of m-cresol wastewater, including chemical adsorption, photocatalytic degradation, electrocatalytic degradation and catalytic wet oxidation. The efficiency, cost and process optimization of different methods are discussed in detail. Chemical adsorption is convenient but has relatively low efficiency. Photocatalytic degradation is an easily operated technology with high efficiency, but the selection of catalyst is too limited and the cost of light source is relatively high. Electrocatalytic degradation is time-saving but energy-intensive, and operational difficulty brings a barrier to industrialization. Catalytic wet oxidation (CWO) is highly effective and easily modified, but the performance and stability of catalysts are still very moderate. Following this, the selection and application of different methods regarding the requirement of actual environment are analyzed. Finally, a perspective on the opportunities and development for efficient m-cresol removal method is given.

Corresponding author: Yi Yang, College of Education for the Future, Beijing Normal University, Zhuhai 519087, P. R. China, E-mail:

Funding source: Beijing Normal University 10.13039/501100002726

Award Identifier / Grant number: 29100-111032105

  1. Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

  2. Research funding: YY gratefully acknowledges the financial support from Beijing Normal University under the grant 29100-111032105.

  3. Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare no conflicts of interest regarding this article.


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Received: 2021-01-11
Accepted: 2021-04-04
Published Online: 2021-07-22
Published in Print: 2022-11-25

© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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