Thou art eating raw sewage, milord

Cows standing in field looking at camera
“Did somebody say feces?”
Image: JW LTD (Getty Images)
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Americans flush about 300 million pounds of cold, hard fecal matter every day—but what’s left over after that wastewater is cleaned and discharged? ’Tis poop, milord. Well, technically it’s something called “biosolid sludge,” and the waste management industry apparently sells it as fertilizer. The Guardian reports that it’s been infiltrating the food chain and making people sick for years:

“Now the practice is behind a growing number of public health problems. Spreading pollutant-filled biosolids on farmland is making people sick, contaminating drinking water and filling crops, livestock and humans with everything from pharmaceuticals to PFAS.”

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The situation is pretty dire. One University of North Carolina study found 75% of people living near farms that used biosolids had health issues like burning eyes, nausea, vomiting, and even boils. So, why are farmers doing this? According to The Guardian, the sludge is expensive to dispose of because it has to be landfilled. With that in mind, the waste management industry repackages the sludge as ultra-rich, ultra-cheap fertilizer, coating the nation’s farmland in layers of human excrement to turn a profit. Actually, it’s not just farmland: The Guardian reports that, in 2019, about 60% of sewage sludge was spread across farmland, gardens, and even schoolyards. It’s like my grandmother used to say: the grass is always greener where there’s poop.

So, what’s a farmer to do? The EPA does allow the use of biosolids, although the agency’s site cautions against the “distinctive smell” associated with the product. (Once again, ’tis poop.) But some farmers and environmentalists are understandably wary of the practice, which is why companies like GP Solutions are focusing on waste-free fertilizer alternatives. As more and more companies work to to reduce toxic sludge in the nation’s food chain, farmers will, with any luck, have the resources they need to end unsafe practices. Now I just have to figure out what to tell the members of my cover band, Sister Sludge.

Staff writer @ The Takeout. Pork shoulder princess @ Chicago.

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DISCUSSION

It is used on consumer produce. News flash, consumer bags of this stuff are taken home and used in home gardens. News flash, Google “Biosolids Biennial Review Reporting Period 2016–2017" which is 370 dangerous chemicals found in biosolids the US EPA will admit to finally. One is PFAS. It also has bacteria, viruses, micro plastic and heavy metals and potentially every chemical found in the US EPA’s TSCA Chemical Substance Inventory. (86,000) Here is a quote when we asked the US EPA 2019 about the safety now and in the past as they test the 370. Remember the consumer bags. “Right now, the EPA cannot say that the pollutants found in biosolids will not cause harmful effects to you, your crops or your livestock. We will know more when we assess these chemicals – something we are actively working on.” This was written by Elizabeth Resek, Biosolids Lead Health and Ecological Criteria Division Office of Science and Technology EPA/Office of Water 202-566-1228.

Just for grins, and there are 8 or more of these, read the US EPA Office of Inspector General report warnings 19-P-0002 and 14-P-0363 and then tell me there is not significant health risk of contamination of crops, livestock, surface and ground water and even the air you breath.

Farmer are mislead and even lied to to get them to take it. “Biosolids” being free makes it a tasty worm for the ignorant all while it is causing Americans health. This has been going on since 1996.

For the record it smells like a dead decaying carcass wrapped in sewage. You can not get the odor out of your nose. This is from a doctor Snyder on the odor: “Odor means that the material has destabilized and is still putrefying, emitting endotoxins and other harmful bio-aerosols.” That means if you breath enough of it, you will get sick and there has been sickness from this exposure.

Lillian, it’s not just “cold, hard fecal matter”. It is industrial, medical, storm drain and household toxic sewage with very limited treatment and testing.

And here is the punch line. It was made legal by your US and state Legislature just after they made law that east and west coast could no longer dump it in the ocean because it was killing everything.

I have just given you a pin prick of the conspiracy.

Go figure.

Craig Monk