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FROM REGULATOR TO CONTRACTOR BACK TO REGULATOR: PERSPECTIVES ON BIOSOLIDS RECYCLING

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Perspectives on biosolids recycling are provided by a person who has been involved with biosolids recycling issues for more than a quarter of a century as a regulator and a private sector contractor. The discussion focuses on how contractors and regulators tend to view biosolids recycling activities. The contractor is interested in making money and keeping good relationships with his clients, the regulators and the public. The regulator is shown to be in a rather difficult position which has created a huge national problem resulting from the fact that for the most part, the federal, state and local regulatory priority for biosolids recycling activities is very low. There are some exceptions; however, the vast majority of biosolids projects have little, if any, inspection and are thus prone to fall into operating conditions that are in violation of applicable laws and regulations. Specific case histories show some of the more common problems and lapses that have occurred primarily because of the lack of adequate regulatory oversight. In conclusion, the author looks into the future for biosolids recycling. The point is made that biosolids professionals all know that for biosolids recycling to be, and remain, a viable and sustainable option, it must be done right. The author believes that the best way for this to happen is for municipalities to develop and implement an environmental management system (EMS) for biosolids.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2007-01-01

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