Municipal composted biosolids

The International Compost Sanitation Forum and Message Board: Humanure Composting Around the World: Municipal composted biosolids
Author: Sally_A._White@interact.ccsd.net
Saturday, November 03, 2001 - 4:02 pm
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In the middle of the desert, gardening is an entirely different challenge. I've gotten permission and grant $ to install an organic experimental garden at my school. I want to use composted biosolids in one or two of the beds. The biosolids are composted in a two year cycle in a neighboring (2.5 hrs) community. Their biosolids, like those produced in my community are free from the troublesome heavy metals that exist elsewhere. I'm hoping that our garden and the resulting produce will result in our community starting composting locally produced biosolids from our waste water treatment plants. I can find all kinds of negative responses to using biosolids from waste water treatment plants, but none of the sites stated that the solids had been composted and tested for pathogens. Any help would be greatly appreciated. As Joe stated in "The Humanure Handbook": "Composting is the best thing you can do with sludge."

Author: Larry
Friday, November 11, 2005 - 2:21 pm
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Problems with municipal sewage treatment plants are increasingly in the news, since Sally wrote about her efforts to compost sludge from her local treatment facility. Upgrading the aging sewage infrastructure is hugely expensive. One might think waterless composting toilets would have considerable appeal to cash-strapped cities facing the needed repairs and expansions. But I don't see much planning yet for such an obvious solution in the US. Instead, the EPA just weakened wastewater effluent standards with a bizarrely named "Headworks Rule." Most significant are the exemptions of benzene and ethylene glycol (common toxic solvents) from wastewater testing requirements. Seems that the idea is if you can't clean up the pollution, just weaken the standards. Check it out at: http://www.epa.gov/epaoswer/hazwaste/id/headworks/index.htm

I would be very cautious about using composted bio-solids from a city facility on food crops. Recycling humanure in our backyard avoids contamination by toxic chemicals, saves water, and prevents pollution.

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