Oil spill incidents are hazardous and have prolonged damage to the marine environment. Management and spill clean-up procedures are practical and rapid, with several shortcomings. Coco peat (CP) and coco fibre (CF) are refined from coconut waste, and their abundance makes them desirable for diesel spillage treatment. Using a filter-based system, the selectivity of coco peat sorbent was tested using CP, CF and peat-fibre mix (CPM). CP exhibited maximal diesel sorption capacity with minimal seawater uptake, thus being selected for further optimisation analysis. The heat treatment considerably improved the sorption capacity and efficiency of diesel absorbed by CP, as supported by FTIR and VPSEM-EDX analysis. Conventional one-factor-at-a-time (OFAT) examined the performance of diesel sorption by CP under varying parameters, namely temperature, time of heating, packing density and diesel concentration. The significant factors were statistically evaluated using response surface methodology (RSM) via Plackett-Burman design (PB) and central composite design (CCD). Three significant (p < 0.05) factors (time, packing density and diesel concentration) were identified by PB and further analysed for interactions among the parameters. CCD predicted efficiency of diesel absorbed at 59.92% (71.90 mL) (initial diesel concentration of 30% v/v) and the experimental model validated the design with 59.17% (71.00 mL) diesel sorbed at the optimised conditions of 14.1 min of heating (200 °C) with packing density of 0.08 g/cm3 and 30% (v/v) of diesel concentration. The performance of CP in RSM (59.17%) was better than that in OFAT (58.33%). The discoveries imply that natural sorbent materials such as CP in oil spill clean-up operations can be advantageous and environmentally feasible. This study also demonstrated the diesel-filter system as a pilot study for the prospective up-scale application of oil spills.
ASJC Scopus subject areas