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Development of EPA's new methods to quantify vector attraction of wastewater sludges

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EPA's 1979 and 1993 sludge regulations require that sewage sludge be reduced in vector attraction before it can be applied to the land. In the 1979 regulation, satisfactory vector attraction reduction (VAR) could be demonstrated if treatment processes reduced the volatile solids content of sludge by 38%. The 1993 regulation adds two alternative test methods for aerobic sludges for determining whether VAR has been adequate. In the first method, specific oxygen uptake rate (SOUR) of the sludge must be <1.5 mg O2/hr/g total solids, and in the second method, the additional volatile solids reduction (AVSR) that occurs when the sludge is further digested for 30 days must be <15%. Experimentation with the new tests is described. Comparisons among the three methods showed that the 38% VSR requirement and the SOUR test were equivalent only near 20°C. The AVSR test was more conservative than either of the other tests.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 1996-05-01

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  • Water Environment Research (WER) is published monthly, including an annual Literature Review. A subscription to WER includes access to the latest content back to 1992, as well as access to fast track articles. An individual subscription is valid for 12 months from month of purchase.

    Water Environment Research (WER) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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