Municipal wastewater treatment generates tons of dried and composted sludge that are often applied to yards and pastures for their nutrient value. Current testing includes ensures the absence of enteric microbes and metals in the biosolids so the product is considered safe for most applications. However, recent research into xenobiotic or resistant chemicals that remain after biological treatment is causing some concern.
The USGS recently released a study of nine different commercially sold biosolids and tested for 87 different organic chemicals. Every sample had at least 25 of the chemicals present with one having 45 chemicals detected. Total summed concentrations ranged from 64 to 1,811 mg/kg (parts per million)
Erik Rumbaugh has been involved in biological waste treatment for over 20 years. He has worked with industrial and municipal wastewater facilities to ensure optimal performance of their treatment systems. He is a founder of Aster Bio (www.asterbio.com) specializing in biological waste treatment.
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