2
Biosolids Management

Wastewater treatment necessarily produces two end products: effluent and sewage sludge. All wastewater generated in homes, businesses, industries, and other venues that is conveyed to wastewater treatment plants is treated to allow effluent discharge back into the surface and groundwaters of the United States. Sewage sludge is likewise treated in the wastewater process, generally through aerobic or anaerobic microbial activity for specified time periods and temperatures. Both effluent and sewage sludge require treatment to ensure that their release into the environment is protective of human health and the environment as required by the Clean Water Act (CWA). Sewage sludge is defined as the solid, semi-solid, or liquid residue generated during the treatment of domestic sewage in a treatment works, and biosolids are defined in this report as sewage sludge that has been treated to meet standards for land application under Part 503 of the CWA or any other equivalent land-application standards.

Of the nation’s estimated 263 million people in 1996, 190 million of them or 72% contributed wastewater directly through a sewerage system to approximately 16,000 publicly owned treatment works (POTW) (EPA 2000a). The remaining 73 million people discharged wastewater to some form of on-site treatment system or holding tank, more than half of which also is ultimately discharged to a POTW (Razvi 2000). Each person discharging human waste to a wastewater treatment system produces approximately 47 dry pounds (21 kilograms) of sewage sludge each year (EPA 1993). As the population of the



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices 2 Biosolids Management Wastewater treatment necessarily produces two end products: effluent and sewage sludge. All wastewater generated in homes, businesses, industries, and other venues that is conveyed to wastewater treatment plants is treated to allow effluent discharge back into the surface and groundwaters of the United States. Sewage sludge is likewise treated in the wastewater process, generally through aerobic or anaerobic microbial activity for specified time periods and temperatures. Both effluent and sewage sludge require treatment to ensure that their release into the environment is protective of human health and the environment as required by the Clean Water Act (CWA). Sewage sludge is defined as the solid, semi-solid, or liquid residue generated during the treatment of domestic sewage in a treatment works, and biosolids are defined in this report as sewage sludge that has been treated to meet standards for land application under Part 503 of the CWA or any other equivalent land-application standards. Of the nation’s estimated 263 million people in 1996, 190 million of them or 72% contributed wastewater directly through a sewerage system to approximately 16,000 publicly owned treatment works (POTW) (EPA 2000a). The remaining 73 million people discharged wastewater to some form of on-site treatment system or holding tank, more than half of which also is ultimately discharged to a POTW (Razvi 2000). Each person discharging human waste to a wastewater treatment system produces approximately 47 dry pounds (21 kilograms) of sewage sludge each year (EPA 1993). As the population of the

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices United States increases, the percentage of the population directly discharging to POTWs is projected to increase to 88% by 2016 (EPA 2000a). The ability to effectively treat and return wastewater and sewage sludge to the environment in a protective manner is of paramount importance from both a public-health and an environmental perspective. In partial recognition of this fact, Congress passed the CWA of 1972 and the federal government has contributed $61.1 billion in grants and $16.1 billion in low-interest loans to municipal and local governments between 1972 and 1999 for capital construction costs to provide necessary support for wastewater and sewage-sludge treatment and disposition of biosolids (EPA 2000a). Approximately 40% of that amount has been used for sewage sludge treatment and disposition of biosolids (Peavy et al. 1985). Sewage sludge is generated in several treatment processes that generally include primary (from primary clarification) and secondary (from secondary clarification) sewage sludge. The general process of treating wastewater and sewage sludge is illustrated in Figures 2–1 and 2–2. EPA is responsible under Section 405 of the CWA to promulgate regulations for sewage sludge use or disposal. The CWA Amendments of 1987 added special provisions that required EPA to identify toxic pollutants and set sewage-sludge standards that are “adequate to protect public health and the environment from any reasonably anticipated adverse effect of each pollutant” (emphasis added). Recognizing that sewage-sludge production will continue to increase and that sewage sludge possesses many potential beneficial properties for agricultural production, federal and state agencies have long advocated the recycling of it as biosolids through land application (EPA 1981, 1984, 1991). The other primary options for sewage sludge disposition are to bury it in a landfill or to incinerate it. Although these latter options possess inherent risks and environmental difficulties, these options are beyond the scope of this report (see Chapter 1). Of the 16,000 POTWs in the United States, approximately 8,650 generate sewage sludge that must be used or disposed of at least annually (Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, unpublished data, 2001). Based on data from 37 states, approximately 5,900 of these sewage sludge generators (68%) either land apply or publicly distribute over 3.4 million dry tons of biosolids each year (see also End Use Practice section of this chapter). Most of this recycling use is conducted without public opposition and with no documented adverse health effects. However, recent allegations of adverse health effects have received media and congressional attention. Chapter 3 assesses the epidemiological evidence and approach for health effects associated with biosolids production and application, but does not systematically investigate these allegations. Rather, the report examines the process by which the regulations were established and determines whether advances in risk-assessment methods warrant a revisiting of the process.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices FIGURE 2–1 The process schematic delineating water and wastewater treatment along with the sewage sludge stream.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices FIGURE 2–2 Sewage sludge treatment alternatives.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices This chapter briefly examines the development of the Part 503 rule, certain related issues, and what EPA has done to implement the rule since promulgation. It also reviews how states implement the rule, whether or not they have explicit delegated authority from EPA. An examination of biosolids regulations and practices in Europe is then used to compare and contrast these practices. An overview of the acceptable pathogen treatment controls and land application site restrictions, is presented, as well as associated methods for stabilization to reduce the attraction to vectors, such as rodents. Issues are raised that relate to the verification of the efficacy of treatment. Finally, this chapter examines end-use practices in the United States, biosolids quality achieved, data on nonregulated pollutants, risk-management practices inherent to land application of biosolids (primarily Class B) and to the risk-assessment process, and compliance and enforcement strategies and action taken by EPA or states. FEDERAL BIOSOLIDS REGULATIONS AND CURRENT STATE OF PROGRAM History The current biosolids standards became effective in Part 503 of Chapter 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (40 CFR 503) on March 22, 1993 (EPA 1993). More specifically, the regulations are established as General Requirements, Pollutant Limits, Management Practices, Operational Standards, Frequency of Monitoring Requirements, Record Keeping, and Reporting. The requirements apply to each of the three major methods of ultimate disposition of sewage sludge or biosolids: recycling and public distribution, burial in a municipal solid-waste landfill or a surface disposal site, or incineration. Enforceable standards are established for all three options, but this report focuses only on land application and public distribution. The standards were developed over more than 10 years and received both public and private input. From September 13, 1979, until 40 CFR 503 was published, standards for the land application of biosolids were set in 40 CFR Part 257 (EPA 1979). Research focusing on the beneficial micro- and macronutrients present in treated sewage sludge had been conducted at numerous universities before the publication of the 1979 regulations (e.g., Keeney et al. 1975). Indeed, Wisconsin statutes specifically encouraged the responsible recycling of biosolids through use on agricultural land beginning in 1973 (Wisconsin Statutes Assembly Bill 128, 1973).

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices Because POTWs typically have industrial contributors to their wastewater collection systems, wastewater pretreatment regulations became effective through 40 CFR Part 403 on June 26, 1978, with a stated objective to prevent the introduction of pollutants into POTWs which will interfere with the operation of a POTW, including interference with its use or disposal of municipal biosolids; prevent the introduction of pollutants into POTWs which will pass through the treatment works or otherwise be incompatible with such works; and improve opportunities to recycle and reclaim municipal and industrial wastewaters and biosolids (EPA 1999a). These regulations to control pollution dramatically reduced the concentrations of selected pollutants discharged to applicable sewerage systems and therefore also the concentrations in the resultant biosolids (see also Characterization of Biosolids section). Federal Policy EPA has had a long-standing policy of promoting the beneficial use of biosolids, and a regulatory mandate to review and revise related regulations periodically as new research warrants. In January 1981, EPA published a statement of federal policy and guidance with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for the proper management and necessary controls of land application of biosolids for the production of fruits and vegetables. EPA (1984) further formalized its policy of promoting beneficial use and developing a comprehensive regulatory approach as mandated by the CWA in the Federal Register on June 12, 1984. EPA again clarified that position through the publication of an interagency policy, which with six other federal agencies promoted the beneficial use of biosolids in the Federal Register on July 18, 1991 (EPA 1991). Section 402 of the CWA sets provisions for permitting discharges, including sewage sludge, to waters of the United States. As authorized by the CWA, the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program has been in place since 1972 and regulates point sources of water pollution, such as pollutants discharged from pipes or ditches. Many states consider the land application of biosolids to be a point-source discharge to groundwater and regulate this practice under the permit program. Individual homes that are connected to a municipal system, use a septic system, or do not

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices have a surface discharge do not need an NPDES permit; however, industrial, municipal, and other facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters. In most cases, the NPDES permit program is administered by authorized states. Chapter 40 of CFR 501 was published in 1989 to set a regulatory framework for states seeking delegated authority to implement a biosolids program under permits in compliance with Section 402. At present, there are five states that have received delegation (Oklahoma, Utah, Texas, Wisconsin, and South Dakota) and about 20 that are seeking such authority. Conversely, 44 states have received delegated implementation authority for the NPDES effluent permit program (EPA 1999a). Notably, delegation for the effluent permit program is funded, and delegation for and implementation of the biosolids program is not. Proposed Regulation 40 CFR 503 was published for public comments on February 6, 1989. EPA’s original risk assessment (see Chapter 5 for further information) defined the at-risk population as the most exposed individual (MEI). The MEI is a person who is maximally exposed to a pollutant in biosolids for a lifetime. EPA conducted an aggregate public-health risk assessment that estimated the risk from land application of biosolids in the absence of any regulation. That aggregate assessment found that the risk would be less than one cancer case per year and that approximately 1,000 persons would exceed a threshold lead concentration and 500 would experience some lead-related health effects. With the final regulation in place, the resultant risk was predicted to be less than one cancer case, less than one person exceeding a threshold blood lead level, and less than one person experiencing adverse lead effects (EPA 1993). In addition, this risk would present itself only at such time as all assumptions in the risk assessment were fulfilled. The Cooperative State Research Service Technical Committee W-170, composed of university researchers, organized a Peer Review Committee (PRC) from academia, EPA, environmental groups, and units of state and local government to provide expert and extensive comments to EPA on the proposed rule (Cooperative State Research Service Technical Committee W-170 1989). Two critical points were raised during the public comment period by the PRC: (1) The MEI was modeled with multiple layers of conservative exposures that could not exist in reality, and this contradicted the notion of reasonably anticipated adverse effects; and (2) the research for metal uptake was based on metal salts and pot studies in greenhouses rather than field research. They also recommended a risk-based approach to pathogens. Al-

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices though EPA had an official policy to promote beneficial use of biosolids, the proposed regulation would have substantially curtailed such use, thus encouraging increased surface disposal and incineration. As a result of this extensive peer review, EPA initiated additional research and substantially modified the risk assessment and ultimately the regulation. For example, EPA decided to use a highly exposed individual (HEI) rather than an MEI in the risk assessment. The HEI is a person who remains for an extended period at or adjacent to the site where maximum exposure occurs. The HEI represented a more reasonable case of exposure and still provided multiple safety factors of protection (EPA 1993, 1995a). Final Regulations There are three major categories of requirements establishing biosolids quality and site-management criteria for land application. Each of these categories is further divided into two sections. When biosolids meet the strictest section in all three categories, it is considered exceptional quality (EQ). Management-practice requirements establish site restrictions and limit application rates on agricultural land for the remaining non-EQ biosolids. The three requirement categories that establish biosolids quality are as follow: Pollutant concentrations versus ceiling concentrations. Class A pathogen criteria versus Class B pathogen criteria that include management practices. Process-control criteria to reduce attraction to vectors versus physical barriers from vectors. Biosolids that meet the requirements to be deemed EQ can be publicly distributed without further regulation under 40 CFR 503. (If biosolids do not meet the pollutant concentration limits and the other requirements, they can still be publicly distributed as long as an information sheet is included that specifies a maximum annual application rate.) It is further stipulated that biosolids must be land applied at an “agronomic rate” to not exceed the nitrogen requirements for the crop grown. This stipulation is to avoid loss from the root zone to the groundwater and to avoid excessive nitrogen buildup that may ultimately run off to surface water. The Part 503 federal regulations for pathogen and vector attraction control are and have been technologically based instead of risk based. That is in part due to unreliable pathogen assays and insufficient and variable data with respect to the fate and transport of pathogens in the natural environment (see Chapter 6 for more details).

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices Pollutant Concentrations Specific pollutant concentrations were derived for nine metals (EPA 1995a). The risk assessment examined 14 pathways of exposure and a maximum cumulative loading rate was determined for the most limiting pathway for each pollutant. These values are shown in column 2 of Table 2–1. Assumptions were then made that a site was used for 100 consecutive years at a loading rate of 10 MT/hectare per year. Next, a back calculation was used to determine a maximum concentration in the biosolids that would not allow the maximum cumulative loading rate to be attained. The pollutant concentration limits are intended to define biosolids that can be land applied without requiring the applier to track cumulative pollutant loadings. The methods used by EPA to identify the pollutant concentration limits are described in Chapter 5. That concentration became the pollutant concentration limit in all but two cases (see below). The current pollutant concentration limits are shown in column 3 of Table 2–1. A National Sewage Sludge Survey (NSSS) was conducted by EPA (1990) for the purpose of gathering needed data on sewage sludge quality in the nation. The ceiling limit was set at the 99th percentile level found in the NSSS or the risk-based number, whichever was greater. The current ceiling limit concentrations are shown in column 1 of Table 2–1. The risk-derived number became the ceiling limit only for chromium (which was later deleted from regulation; see discussion later in this chapter), selenium, and nickel.1 In those cases, the 99th percentile value became the pollutant concentration limit. Currently, both the ceiling concentration and pollutant concentration limits are risk based for nickel and selenium. Thus, land-applied biosolids that contain chemical concentrations less than those shown in column 3 of Table 2–1 do not need to track cumulative loadings to sites, because it is assumed that loadings will never approach the limits shown in column 2. If land-applied biosolids have any chemical concentrations between the values of column 3 and column 1, then cumulative loading records must be kept for any such bulk application. It is important to note that when biosolids are sold or given away in a bag or container that weighs less than 1 MT, it must meet the strictest standards for pathogen and vector control but does not need to meet the pollutant concentration limits shown in column 3 of Table 2–1. As noted previously, if it does not meet the column 3 limits, an information sheet must be supplied 1   The risk-based number and 99th percentile level found in the NSSS were the same for nickel.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices TABLE 2–1 Pollutant Concentration Limits and Loading Rates for Land Application in the United States Pollutant (1) Ceiling Concentration Limit (mg/kg)a (2) Cumulative Loading Rate Limit (kg/ha)a (3) Pollutant Concentration Limit (mg/kg)a (4) Annual Pollutant Loading Rate for Distributed Biosolids Exceeding Column 3 (kg/ha/y)a Arsenic 75 41 41 2.0 Cadmium 85 39 39 1.9 Copper 4,300 1,500 1,500 75 Lead 840 300 300 15 Mercury 57 17 17 0.85 Molybdenum 75 - - - Nickel 420 420 420 21 Selenium 100 100 100 5 Zinc 7,500 2,800 2,800 140 Applies to: All biosolids that are land applied Bulk biosolids Bulk or baggedb biosolids Baggedb biosolids where at least one element does not meet column 3 aDry weight basis. bBagged biosolids are sold or given away in a bag or container containing less than 1 metric ton (MT). Abbreviations: mg, milligram; kg, kilogram; ha, hectare; y, year. Source: Adapted from 40 CFR, Part 503.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices or instructions printed on the bag that prescribe loading rates that will not exceed annual loading rates shown in column 4. Because of the perceived infrequent use of this exception and the difficulty with tracking its use, the committee concluded that it would be simpler to require that all biosolids sold or given away be EQ. Pathogen Control Biosolids are divided into Class A and Class B on this basis of their pathogen content and control. Class A biosolids must undergo more extensive treatment than Class B biosolids (described below) to reduce pathogens, including bacteria, enteric viruses, and viable helminth ova, to below detectable amounts. Once these goals are achieved, Class A biosolids can be land applied without any pathogen-related restrictions at the site. Biosolids having the least further restrictions on land application are those meeting the Class A pathogen requirements, the vector control requirements, and the high-quality pollutant concentration limits for metals. If all these requirements are met, the biosolids can be used with no more restrictions than any other fertilizer or soil-amendment product. The Class B pathogen requirements were developed from the 1979 40 CFR 257 regulations for processes to significantly reduce pathogens (PSRP). In the initial development of those requirements, a PSRP was defined as a process that reduces pathogenic viruses, Salmonella bacteria, and indicator bacteria (fecal coliform) by at least 1 log (90%) (EPA 1989). The Class B biosolids requirements are intended to ensure that pathogens in biosolids have been reduced to amounts that are protective of public health and the environment under the specific use conditions. As a central element of the Class B criteria, site restrictions designed to minimize potential for human and animal contact apply until environmental factors have further reduced pathogens to low amounts. Thus, packaged Class B biosolids cannot be sold or given away for land application at public-contact sites, lawns, and home gardens but can be used in bulk quantities at appropriate types of land-application sites, such as agricultural lands, forests, and mine reclamation sites, provided the biosolids meet limits on pollutants, vector-attraction reduction, and other management requirements of Part 503 (EPA 1993). In addition, biosolids can be used as municipal-solid-waste (MSW) landfill cover in compliance with 40 CFR Part 258.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices furans, and coplanar PCBs, which they proposed to add to 40 CFR 503. The mean TEQ value for total dioxin and dioxin-like compounds was 31.60 nanograms per kilogram (ng/kg) DM, when nondetect measurements were summed at one-half the detection limit (EPA 2002a). AMSA also conducted a survey of member and nonmember facilities in late 2000 (Alvarado et al. 2001). A total of 197 biosolids samples were collected from 170 facilities and mean and median TEQ concentrations of 48.5 and 21.7 ng/kg were reported, respectively. The TEQ values ranged from 7.1 to 256 ng/kg with a single outlier of 3,590 ng/kg. Notably, these TEQ concentrations are lower than those reported in a similar survey conducted in 1994 (Green et al. 1995). This finding may be due to fewer medical-waste incinerators in operation and other reduced combustion sources of dioxin but may in large part be explained by improved analytical techniques. In all three surveys, nondetectable congeners were summed at one-half the detection concentration. As detection concentrations continue to decrease, so too do the added values of nondetections. The State of Vermont recently reported the results of a survey of the 17 dioxin and furan congeners (but excluded coplanar PCBs) in a sampling of 20 POTWs and 3 comingling EQ generating facilities (Kelley 2000). A total of 28 samples were collected in November and December 1996 and in August 1998. The mean and median TEQ concentrations were 11.22 and 8.55 ppt, respectively, and the range was from 1.32 to 59.44 ppt. One important difference in the Vermont survey data compared with the EPA and AMSA data is that nondetectable congeners were summed as zero rather than one-half the detection limit. COMPLIANCE ASSISTANCE AND ENFORCEMENT Perhaps the most common and vocal complaint of EPA’s biosolids program is the lack of federal presence to ensure compliance with the existing regulations. In the absence of that assurance, and as the report of the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) concluded (EPA 2000b), EPA cannot claim that the regulations are followed and that public health and the environment are protected as required by the CWA. States do, however, implement their own biosolids programs to some greater or lesser extent and actively participate in both compliance assistance and enforcement. State regulators report substantial compliance is prevalent when assessed. EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assistance has taken a formal position that biosolids are a low public-health and environmental priority, and thus no formal program policy is in place. However, according to EPA, all 10 regional offices will take appropriate action as required if a case is brought to their attention (D.Regas, EPA, personal communication to OIG, June 11,

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices 2001). Although some EPA regional offices are more aggressive and involved than others, little enforcement action is taken at the federal level. Furthermore, enforcement strategies differ between states and EPA; states tend to favor stepped enforcement that focuses on compliance assistance and education, and EPA is likely to levy monetary penalties with less discussion. EPA recently established an incident-response team, as part of the Biosolids Program Implementation Team, to address and investigate critical allegations of sewage sludge and biosolids violations and public-health threats. A problem this team has faced is that they are not notified of situations in a timely manner. There is currently no process for registration or follow-up on complaints and alleged violations. An administrative framework is necessary to track such allegations, investigations, and outcomes. FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS EPA provides insufficient support and oversight to the biosolids program. EPA gives low priority to its biosolids program, because it contends that risks from exposure to chemicals and pathogens in biosolids are low and that land-application programs generally function as intended and in compliance with the regulations. This contention should be better substantiated. Recommendations EPA should strengthen its biosolids-oversight program by increasing the amount of funding and staff (technical and administrative) devoted to it. EPA should provide additional funds (not diverted funds) to states to implement biosolids programs and facilitate delegation of authority to states to administer the federal biosolids regulations. Resources are also needed for conducting research into emerging issues and to revise the regulations as appropriate and in a timely fashion (e.g., molybdenum standards should be proposed). A process should be established to track allegations and sentinel events (compliance, management, or health based), investigations, and conclusions. Such tracking should be systematic, developed in cooperation with states, and should document both positive and negative outcomes. The Pathogen Equivalency Committee (PEC) performs invaluable technical support and process assessment. Recommendations The PEC should be funded, supported, and officially sanctioned as an integral part of the federal biosolids program. The following are important in supporting the PEC:

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices The PEC members should have a formal portion of their time allocated to PEC responsibilities. Travel funds should be put at the disposal of the PEC to enable meeting attendance and visits to selected sites of petitioners. There is a perception on the part of PEC members that EPA’s Cincinnati laboratories do not include biosolids as a formal part of their mission statement. This needs to be clarified and rectified. formal procedure for designation of backup members should be devised. Biosolids risk-management practices are an integral component of the risk assessment and technological criteria that were used to establish the standards of the Part 503 rule. They are therefore an important component of the regulations for chemicals and pathogens. Recommendations Studies should be conducted to determine whether the management practices specified in the Part 503 rule (e.g., 10-meter setback from waters) achieve their intended effect. Additional risk-management practices should be considered in future revisions to the Part 503 rule, including setbacks from residences or businesses, setbacks from private and public water-supply wells, slope restrictions, soil permeability and depth to groundwater or bedrock, and reexamination of whether a greater setback distance to surface water is warranted. Provisions for allowing distribution of Class A biosolids in bags or other containers (weighing less than 1 metric ton) should not be allowed when they do not meet pollutant concentration limits (i.e., all biosolids sold or given away should be EQ). Exemptions from nutrient management and site restrictions for land application of bulk EQ biosolids should be eliminated. There are several prescribed treatment processes that can be used to meet regulatory requirements for classifying biosolids as Class A or Class B. However, the efficacy of the treatment processes needs verification, and the stabilization regulations need to be refined for consistent control of vector attraction. Recommendations EPA should conduct national field and laboratory surveys to verify that Class A and Class B treatment processes perform as assumed by their engineering and design principles. Determinations should be made of pathogen density and elimination across the various accepted treatment processes and in the biosolids or environmental media over time. Standard treatment design criteria should be adopted nationally to ensure compliance with existing biosolids regulations.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices Stabilization controls need to be further refined and directly correlated to metabolic techniques (e.g., SOUR test, carbon dioxide metabolic release, methane metabolic release). The available methods for detecting and quantifying pathogens in biosolids have not been validated. There have been a number of advances in detection and quantification of pathogens in the environment and in approaches to environmental sample collection and processing. However, no consensus standards have been developed for pathogen measurements in biosolids. Recommendation EPA should support development, standardization, and validation of detection and quantification methods for pathogens and indicator organisms regulated under the Part 503 rule. The sufficiency of these methods and their results should be considered in conducting and interpreting future risk assessments and used to develop applicable risk-management technologies. The CWA requires EPA to establish biosolids regulations based on risk; however, it is important to acknowledge and consider other approaches to regulating land application of biosolids. Recommendation As part of the process of revising the Part 503 rule, EPA should review biosolids protocols used by other nations. This could provide valuable new perspectives and insights into the scientific, technical, and societal bases for the development and implementation of biosolids regulations. EPA and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cosponsored a workshop on emerging pathogens in June 2001 with international experts in the field. The committee supports the major research recommendations from that workshop (listed below). Recommendations Research is needed on the following topics: Pathogen survival in processing or emissions during the treatment process. Vectors carrying pathogens and toxins. Bioaerosols and other chemical aerosols. Test-method development and validation for various organisms in sewage sludge and biosolids. Field verification of efficacy of Class A and Class B treatment processes (including data to directly relate process controls to initial and final pathogen and indicator densities).

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices Development of indicator pathogens for assessment of impact and attenuation in field situations. REFERENCES Alvarado, M.J., S.Armstrong, and E.Crouch. 2001. The AMSA 2000/2001 Survey of Dioxin-like Compounds in Biosolids: Statistical Analyses. Prepared by Cam bridge Environmental, Inc., Cambridge, MA, for the Association of Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies (AMSA). October 30, 2001. [Online]. Available: http://www.amsa-cleanwater.org/advocacy/dioxin/final_report.pdf [May 17, 2002]. Burnham, J.C., N.Hatfield, G.F.Bennett, and T.J.Logan. 1992. Use of kiln dust with quicklime for effective municipal sludge pasteurization and stabilization with the N-Viro soil process. Pp. 128–141 in Innovations and Uses for Lime, D.D.Walker Jr., T.B.Hardy, D.C.Hoffman, and D.D.Stanley, eds. ASTM STP 1135. Phildelphia, PA: American Society for Testing and Materials. Burton, N.C., and D.Trout. 1999. NIOSH Health Hazard Evaluation Report: BioSolids Land Application Process, LeSourdsville, Ohio. HETA 98–0118–2748. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Cooperative State Research Service Technical Committee W-l70. 1989. Peer Review, Standards for the Disposal of Sewage Sludge, U.S. EPA Proposed Rule 40 CFR Parts-257 and 503 (February 6, 1989 Federal Register pp. 5746–5902). Submitted to William R.Diamond, Criteria and Standards Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency . Washington, DC: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Cooperative State Research Service. Council of the European Communities. 1986. Council Directive 86/278/EEC of 12 June 1986 on the Protection of the Environment, and in Particular of the Soil, When Sewage Sludge is Used in Agriculture. Community Legislation in Force. Document 386L0278. [Online]. Available: http://europa.eu.int/eur-lex/en/lif/dat/1986/en_386L0278.html. [September 12, 2001]. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1979. Criteria for classification of solid waste disposal facilities and practices. Fed. Regist. 44(179):53460–53464. (September 13, 1979). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1981. Land Application of Municipal Sewage Sludge for the Production of Fruits and Vegetables: A Statement of Federal Policy and Guidance. SW 905. U.S. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1984. Municipal sludge management policy; Notice. Fed. Regist. 49(114):24849–24850. (June 12, 1984). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1985. Pathogen Risk Assessment Feasibility Study. EPA 600/6–88/003. Office of Research and Development,

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices Office of Health and Environmental Assessment, Environmental Criteria and Assessment Office, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, OH. November 1985. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1989. Environmental Regulation and Technology: Control of the Pathogens in Municipal Wastewater Sludge for Land Application Under CFR Part 257. Office of Technology Transfer and Regulatory Support, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, OH. September 1989. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1990. National sewage sludge survey: Availability of information and data, and anticipated impacts on proposed regulations. Fed. Regist. 55(218):47210–47283. (November 9, 1990). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1991. Interagency policy on beneficial use of municipal sewage sludge on federal land. Notice. Fed. Regist. 56(138):33186–33188. (July 18, 1991). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1992. Technical Support Document for Reduction of Pathogens and Vector Attraction in Sewage Sludge. EPA 822/R-93–004. Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. November 1992. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1993. Federal Register: February 19, 1993. 40 CFR Parts 257, 403, and 503. The Standards for the Use or Disposal of Sewage Sludge. Final Rules. EPA 822/Z-93/001. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1994. Federal register amendment to 40 CFR503. Fed. Regist. 59(38):9095–9100. (February 25, 1994). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1995a. A Guide to the Biosolids Risk Assessments for the EPA Part 503 Rule. EPA 832-B-93–005.Office of Wastewater Management, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. September 1995. [Online]. Available: http://www.epa.gov/owm/bio/503rule/index.htm [December 20, 2001]. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1995b. Sewage sludge: Use or disposal standards. Fed. Regist. 60(206):54771–54792. (October 25, 1995). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1998. Part IV 40 CFR Parts 750 and 761. Disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Final Rule. Fed. Regist. 63(124):35383–35474. (June 29, 1998). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1999a. Introduction to the National Pretreatment Program. EPA-833-B-98–002. Office of Wastewater Management, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. February 1999. [Online]. Available: www.epa.gov/npdes/pubs/final99.pdf [March 19, 2002]. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1999b. Environmental Regulations and Technology: Control of Pathogens and Vector Attraction in Sewage Sludge. EPA/625/R-92/013. Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington DC. [Online]. Available: http://www.epa.gov/ttbnrmrl/625/R-92/013.htm [January 4, 2002].

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 1999c. Standards for the use or disposal of sewage sludge. Proposed rule. Fed. Regist. 64(246):72045–72062. (December 23, 1999). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2000a. Progress in Water Quality: An Evaluation of the National Investment in Municipal Wastewater Treatment. EPA-832-R-00–008. Office of Wastewater Management, Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. June 2000. [Online]. Available: http://www.epa.gov/OWOWM.html/wquality/benefits.htm [May 16, 2002]. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2000b. Water. Biosolids Management and Enforcement. Audit Report No. 2000-P-10. Office of Inspector General. March 20, 2000. [Online]. Available: http://www.epa.gov/oigearth/audit/list300/00P0010.pdf [December 20, 2001]. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2000c. OECA’s Response to IG Report on Biosolids (2000-P-10). Memorandum from Steven A.Herman, Assistant Administrator, Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, to Jonathan C.Fox, Assistant Administrator, Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. June 23, 2000. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2001a. Final Audit Report on Biosolids Management and Enforcement (No. 2000-P-10). Memorandum to Michael Simmons, Deputy Assistant Inspector General for Internal Audits, from Diane C.Regas, Acting Assistant Administrator, Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. June 11, 2001. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2001b. Agency Response to Biosolids Management and Enforcement Audit Report No. 2000-P-10. Memorandum to G.Tracy Mehan, Assistant Administrator for Water, and Sylvia K.Lowrance, Acting Assistant Administrator for Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, from Judith J.Vanderhoef, Project Manager, Headquarters Audit Division. October 5, 2001. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2001c. Workshop on Emerging Infectious Disease Agents and Associated With Animal Manures, Biosolids and Other Similar By-Products, Cincinnati, OH, June 4–6, 2001. National Risk Management Research Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Cincinnati, OH. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2002a. Standards for the Use or Disposal of Sewage Sludge; Notice. Fed. Regist. 67(113):40554–40576. (June 12, 2002). EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2002b. Biosolids Management and Enforcement OIG Audit Report No. 2000-P-10. Memorandum to Judith J. Vanderhoef, Project Manager, Headquarters Audit Division, and Michael Wall, Acting Divisional Inspector for Audit, Headquarters Audit Division, from G.Tracy Mehan, Assistant Administrator for Water, and Sylvia K.Lowrance, Acting Assistant Administrator for Enforcement and Compliance, Assurance , U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. Jan. 30, 2002. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). 2002c. Land Application of Biosolids. Status Report. 2002-S-000004. Office of Inspector General, U.S. Environmental Agency. March 28, 2002.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices European Communities. 2001. Disposal and Recycle Routes for Sewage Sludge. Part 1. Sludge Use Acceptance. Part 2. Regulatory Report. European Communities, DG Environment. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities. October 2001. [Online]. Available: http://europa.eu.int/comm/environment/sludge/sludge_disposal.htm [March 27, 2001]. European Union. 2000a. Waste management. Chapter 4 in Handbook for Implementation of EU Environmental Legislation. Enlargement and Co-Operation with European Third Countries. Europa. The European Union On-Line. [Online]. Available: http://europa.eu.int/comm/environment/enlarg/handbook/waste.pdf. [September 12, 2001]. European Union. 2000b. Working Document on Sludge, 3rd Draft. ENV.E.3/LM. European Union, Brussels. April 27, 2000. The European Union On-Line. Available: http://europa.eu.int/comm/environment/sludge/sludge_en.pdf [March 20, 2002]. Gendebien, A., C.Carlton-Smith, M.Izzo, and J.E.Hall. 1999. UK. Sewage Sludge Survey-National Presentation. R&D Technical Report P 165. Environmental Agency, Bristol, UK. GLUMB (Great Lakes-Upper Mississippi River Board of State and Provincial Public Health and Environmental Managers) . 1997. Recommended Standards for Wastewater Facilities. Albany, NY: Health Education Service. Green, L.C., E.A.C.Crouch, S.R.Armstrong, T.L.Lash, and R.L.Lester. 1995. Comments on: Estimating Exposure to Dioxin-Like Compounds: Review Draft. Cambridge Environmental Inc., Cambridge, MA. January 12, 1995. Haas, C.N. 2001. Assessment of the PEC Process. Report to U.S. EPA Pathogen Equivalency Committee (PEC), Philadelphia, PA. Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA. January 2, 2001. Harrison, E.Z., and M.M.Eaton. 2001. The role of municipalities in regulating the land application of sewage sludges and spetage. Nat. Res. J. 41(1):77–123. Keeney, D.R., K.W.Lee, and L.M.Walsh. 1975. Guidelines for the Application of Wastewater Sludge to Agricultural Land in Wisconsin. Technical Bulletin 88. Madison, WI: Department of Natural Resources. Kelley, E.F. 2000. Vermont Biosolids Dioxin Sampling Project, Final Report. Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation. December 7, 2000. Kester, G. 2000a. Letter to Chairman F.James Sensenbrenner, U.S. House of Representative, Committee on Science, Washington, DC, from G.Kester, State Residuals Coordinator, Bureau of Watershed Management, State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI. April 6, 2000. Kester, G. 2000b. Letter to Michael Cook, Director, Office of Wastewater Management, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, from G.Kester, Wisconsin Residuals Coordinator, Bureau of Watershed Management, State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI. February 23, 2000. Kester, G. 2000c. Letter to Mike Cook, Director, Office of Wastewater Management, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, from G. Kester, Wisconsin Residuals Coordinator, Bureau of Watershed Management, State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI. October 2, 2000.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices Kester, G. 2001a. Letter to Michael B.Cook, Director, Office of Wastewater Management; Elaine G.Stanley, Director, Office of Compliance; Brian J.Maas, Director, Water Enforcement Division; Eric V.Schaffer, Director, Office of Regulatory Enforcement; Elliott J.Gilberg, Director, Chemical, Commercial Services and Municipal Division; and Frederick F.Stiehl, Director, Environmental Planning, Targeting and Data Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, from G.Kester, State Residuals Coordinator, Bureau of Watershed Management, State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI. January 9, 2001. Kester, G. 2001b. Letter to The Honorable Christine Todd Whitman, Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, from G.Kester, State Residuals Coordinator, Bureau of Watershed Management, State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI. September 10, 2001. King County. 2000. Biosolids Quality Summary. Biosolids Management Program. King County Department of Natural Resources, Wastewater Treatment Division, Seattle, WA. July 2001. Kowal, N.E. 1985. Health Effects of Land Application of Municipal Sludge. EPA/600/1–85/015. Health Effects Research Laboratory, Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC. (cited in EPA 1992). Lodor, M.L. 2001. NIOSH reports omits significant details in LeSourdsville case. Biosolids Technical Bulletin 7(4):11–13. Matthews, P., ed. 1996. Global Atlas of Wastewater Sludge and Biosolids Use and Disposal. Scientific and Technical Report No. 4. London: International Association on Water Quality. 197 pp. McGrath, S.P., A.C.Chang, A.L.Page, and E.Witter. 1994. Land application of sewage sludge: Scientific perspectives of heavy metal loading limits in Europe and the United States. Environ. Rev. 2:108–118. Meyer, G.E. 1998. Letter to J.Charles Fox, Assistant Administrator, Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, from G.E.Meyer, Secretary, State of Wisconsin, Department of Natural Resources, Madison, WI. November 13, 1998. MMSD (Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District). 2001. Pretreatment Program Effectiveness Analysis 2000. Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District. May 2001. NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health). 2000. Workers Exposed to Class B Biosolids During and After Field Application. NIOSH Hazard ID. HID 10. DHHS (NIOSH) 2000–158. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Public Health Service, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. August 2000. NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health). 2002. Guidance for Controlling Potential Risks to Workers Exposed to Class B Biosolids. DHHS (NIOSH) 2002–149. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Public Health Service, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Preprint, June 12, 2002.

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices NRC (National Research Council). 1996. Use of Reclaimed Water and Sludge in Food Crop Production. Washington, DC: National Academy Press. O’Connor, G., R.B.Brobst, R.L.Chaney, R.L.Kincaid, L.R.McDowell, G.M. Pierzynski, A.Rubin, and G.G.Van Riper. 2001. A modified risk assessment to establish molybdenum standards for land application of biosolids. J. Environ. Qual. 30(5):1490–1507. Pedersen, D. 1981. Density Levels of Pathogenic Organisms in Municipal Wastewater Sludge: A Literature Review. EPA-600/2–81–170. NTIS PB82–102286. Boston, MA: Camp Dresser & McKee, Inc. Peavy, H.S., D.R.Rowe, and G.Tchobanoglous. 1985. P. 278 in Environmental Engineering. New York: McGraw-Hill. Portland 2002. Biosolids Management Plan. Bureau of Environmental Services, City of Portland. February 2002. Razvi, A. 2000. Audit Report of DNR Septage Management Program. College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. August 15, 2000. Reimers, R.S., A.C.Anderson, A.A.Abdelhgani, M.C.Lockwood, and L.E.White. 1986a. The usage of non-ionizing irradiation processes in the disinfection of water and wastes. Pp. 272–299 in Applied Fields for Energy Conservation, Water Treatment, and Industrial Applications, Final Report, R.S.Reimers, S.F.Bock, and L.E.White, eds. DOE/CE/40568-T1 (DE86014306). Washington, DC: Technical Information Center, Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Department of Energy. June 1986. Reimers, R.S., M.D.Little, A.J.Englande, D.B.McDonell, D.D.Bowman, and J.M. Hughes. 1986b. Investigation of Parasites in Sludges and Disinfection Tech niques. EPA 600/1–85/022. NTIS PB 86–135407. Prepared by the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA, for the Health Effects Research Laboratory, Research Triangle Park, NC. Reimers, R.S., A.J.Englande, R.M.Bakeer, D.D.Bowman, T.A.Calamari, H.B.Brad ford, C.F.Dufrechou, and M.M.Atique. 1999. Update on Current and Future Aspects of Resource Management for Animal Wastes. WEFTEC ’99 Pre-Con ference Workshop “Beneficial Use of Animal Waste Residuals-A Mandatory Aim for the 21st Century.” Water Environment Federation, Alexandria, VA. October 1999. Reimers, R.S., D.D.Bowman, P.L.Schafer, P.Tata, B.D.Leftwich, and M.M.Atique. 2001. Factors Affecting Lagoon Storage Disinfection of Biosolids. Proceedings of Joint WEF/AWWA/CWEA Specialty Conference “Biosolids 2001”, CD-ROM. Water Environmental Federation, Alexandria, VA. February 2001. Stehouwer, R.C., A.M.Wolf, and W.T.Doty. 2000. Chemical monitoring of sewage sludge in Pennsylvania: Variability and application uncertainty. J. Environ. Qual. 29(5):1686–1695. U.K. Department of the Environment. 1993. Sludge Use in Agriculture 1990/1991. Report to the EC Commission Under Directive 86/278/EEC. Department of the Environment. HMSO, London. Wisconsin Administrative Code. 1996. Domestic Sewage Sludge Management. Chapter NR 204. Register 491:15–37. Department of Natural Resources, State

OCR for page 31
Biosolids Applied to Land: Advancing Standards and Practices of Wisconsin Department of Administration. [Online]. Available: http://www.doa.state.wi.us/dsas/docserv/docsales/wiscode.asp [March 27, 2002].