AbstractThe capacity for removal of heavy metals from liquid streams by formation of complexes with lignins oxidized by acid treatment was studied. Lignins were obtained from different sources: sulfuric acid pre-treated cane bagasse, soda pulping bagasse, eucalypt Kraft lignin, and commercial Kraft lignin. These lignins were characterized using different techniques to determine Klason lignin, carbohydrates, total acids, ashes, and their main functional groups: phenolic-OH, carbonyls, etc. The studied lignins were determined spectroscopically using FTIR. In order to increase the metal adsorption capacity, lignins were oxidized at 100°C during 2 h, using aqueous solutions of H2O2 in distilled water solvent and HCl catalyst. Some lignin adsorption isotherms were constructed before and after the oxidation process to define Cd(II) ion removal capacity.