By: Kevin Bonney
To determine whether biosolids can be applied to a particular farm site, an evaluation of the site’s suitability is generally performed by the land applier. The evaluation examines water supplies, soil characteristics, slopes, vegetation, crop needs and the distances to surface and groundwater.
There are different rules for different classes of biosolids.
Class A biosolids contain no detectible levels of pathogens. Class A biosolids that meet strict vector attraction reduction requirements and low level metals contents, only have to apply for permits to ensure that these very tough standards have been met.
Class B biosolids are treated but still contain detectible levels of pathogens. There are buffer requirements, public access, and crop harvesting restrictions for virtually all forms of Class B biosolids.
Nutrient management planning ensures that the appropriate quantity and quality of biosolids are land applied to the farmland. The biosolids application is specifically calculated to match the nutrient uptake requirements of the particular crop. Nutrient management technicians work with the farm community to ensure proper land application and nutrient control.
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