City spreading  “Biosolids” (sewage sludge) on local farm field raises concern

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  1. It is so important to understand that sewer sludge aka biosolids is NOT just human excrement – it is a concentration of all domestic and industrial pollutants that go down drains and sewers. It has some good stuff in it, which plants can use, but a huge load of thousands of other contaminants.  Please read what independent scientists have to say on this issue –

    Prof. Murray McBride, Cornell University – “Agricultural soils are a unique and valuable resource. Protecting agricultural soils requires anticipating and avoiding potential harms since once contaminated with persistent pollutants, the damage will remain for the foreseeable future. Once contaminated, stopping the application of pollutants such as metals and many organic chemicals that are in sewage biosolids will not correct the problem. The contamination will remain for decades or centuries. It is thus critical to prevent this essentially permanent degradation”

    Prof. Jordan Peccia- Yale University – “Land application is often accompanied by strong odors, and biosolids contain heavy metals, hazardous organic chemicals, microbial pathogens, and antibiotic resistant bacteria … A recent study found more than 27 different forms of human viruses in the sewage sludges of five large U.S. cities, ranging from Adenovirus to Corona virus to HIV. … Metals and organic chemicals that resist biological mineralization can sorb to solid particles and also accumulate in sludge. These include polybrominated flame retardants, pharmaceuticals like Prozac and Tagamet, human hormones such as estrogen, antibiotics, narcotics including cocaine, and the metabolites of these compounds.”

    Dr. Sierra Rayne – “The science doesn’t support the disposal of sewage sludge across the landscape. The supposed benefits are more than offset by the risks to human and environmental health. As scientists, we have been watching the issue with increasing concern.
    An unimaginably large number of chemical and biological contaminants exist in these materials, and they persist in the product up to, and after, land disposal. Scientific investigations have identified only a tiny fraction of the total contaminant load. We cannot even say with any degree of confidence what the true range of contaminant risk is from the sludge … Governments are playing Russian roulette with sewage sludge. Over time, there is a high probability this game will be lost at the public’s expense.”

    Brian Bienkowski (Scientific American – May 12, 2014) – “Sewage sludge used as fertilizer on farms can leave traces of prescription drugs and household chemicals deep in the soil, according to a new study by federal scientists. The findings suggest that the widespread use of biosolids could contaminate groundwater near farms with a variety of chemicals, including anti-depressants such as Prozac and hormone-disrupting compounds in antibacterial soaps …The researchers looked for 57 “emerging” contaminants that are increasingly showing up in the environment. Ten were detected in the soil at depths between 7 and 50 inches 18 months after the treated sludge was applied. None was in the field’s soil beforehand… Other studies have found hormones, detergents, fragrances, drugs, disinfectants, and plasticizers in treated sludge used as fertilizer. But this is the first study to show how they can persist and move in soil.”

    Dr. Richard Honour – “”Few in any governments appreciate that nearly all chronic diseases are caused by long-term exposure to low levels of environmental contaminants and pollutants. We should be trying to minimize this exposure, not amplifying it. It is time to end land disposal of Toxic Sewer sludge, and look at cleaner, greener alternatives – gasification / pyrolysis.”
    Let’s get on the right side of history, and use this waste resource to make energy. It is time to stop covering Mother Earth with our cities’ toxic sewage.

    Prominent Scientists and Universities outline the Dangers of Biosolids –
    1. Canadian Scientists – http://bit.ly/1sb2qOP
    2. UK Scientists- Aberdeen / Glasgow Universities – http://www.wte-ltd.co.uk/sewage_sludge_biosolids.html
    3. Cornell –  http://cwmi.css.cornell.edu/case.pdf
    4. http://nwtoxiccommunities.org/links/biosolids-and-sludges
    5. See this link on regulatory failures and risks – https://bioscienceresource.org/sewage-sludge-biosolids-land-application-health-risks-and-regulation-2/
    6. Overview of the issues – http://bit.ly/2kehQlP by Dr. Thomas Maler
    7. Scientific American – https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/drugs-chemicals-seep-deep-into-soil-from-sewage-sludge/
    8. Ten Toxic Truths By Professor Marc Cohen – https://www.organicgardener.com.au/blogs/ten-toxic-truths
    9. https://www.theinvestigativefund.org/investigation/2013/10/23/sewage-waste-lands/
    10. https://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/a-free-fertilizer-for-farmers-sludge-can-pose-health-and-environmental-risks/Content?oid=1562962
    11. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzfNSw9xG-c&feature=youtu.be

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