Biosolids are the mostly organic by-product of modern wastewater treatment, processed into a product suitable for use in soil. Applying biosolids to agricultural land:
- Supplies organic nutrients to the soil, including organic nitrogen, phosphorus, a small amount of potassium, and essential micronutrients such as copper, zinc, iron and boron.
- Increases crop production.
- Is a way to recycle.
- Provides cities and towns with an environmentally responsible, cost-effective and safe way to manage residuals.
- Costs less that landfilling and saves on diminishing landfill space.
- Protects water quality.
- Reduces soil erosion.
- Biosolids sold in retail stores can be used in landscaping and gardening.
For a global perspecive on the uses of biosolids, the Global GAP document provides compelling summaries of how biosolids works as a resource and why its use is a safe environmental practice. BIOSOLIDS LAND APPLICATION AND FOOD CROP QUALITY ASSURANCE SCHEME
An alternative use is biosolids-to-fuel. Pound for pound, biosolids is similar to soft coal in its content of energy. It can be burned to produce energy for steam, but advanced technologies can turn it into fuel that replaces fossil sources.
When agencies choose to deliver biosolids to a municipal solid waste landfill, the biosolids is deployed to decompose waste and to generate methane that modern landfills capture for running electric generators
For a compendium of fact sheets and Frequently Asked Questions Visit the Biosolids FAQ page