EPA'S PART 503 SLUDGE DISPOSAL REGULATION: WAS IT CREATED BY FOOLS OR CRIMINALS WHO WANT TO KILL US?
After EPA spent millions of dollars on a WEF Public relations campaign to get the public to buy into its policy of creating toxic open dumps of farmland, home lawns and gardens, EPA is turning the problem over to the states.
Now EPA is shifting the blame for open dumps to the states, "EPA's role in the management of industrial nonhazardous Waste [sludge] is very limited. Under RCRA Subtitle D, EPA issued minimal criteria prohibiting "open dumps" (40 CFR 257) in 1979. The states, not EPA, are responsible for implementing the "open dumping criteria," and EPA has no back-up enforcement role." (FR. 62, 19, p. 4284,
The problem is that after causing untold amounts of human health and environmental damage, the regulators look like fools and criminals. This was not unexpected by one man who wrote, "if Congress gives EPA regulatory authority over hazardous wastes? Will we have one policy for hazardous wastes which go through municipal treatment plants and a different policy if it goes through and industrial treatment plant? if so, we will end up in court looking like fools." WILLIAM SANJOUR, CHIEF, HAZARDOUS WASTE IMPLEMENTATION BRANCH
The major exclusion is the statutory exemption for agricultural stormwater runoff.
The infectious characteristics of sludge makes it a hazardous waste under RCRA, but it is not included under the hazardous waste regulation 40 CFR 261. Appendix VI to Part 261 [Reserved for Etiologic Agents] (Disease causing agents)
EPA has documented a list of 25 primary pathogens in sewage sludge(Federal Register (FR), 54, P.582) According to a study done by John Walker, when he was with the USDA in Beltsville, liming doesn't prevent regrowth of Salmonella. When John Walker (USDA) and a colleague conducted experiments to determine what would happen to disease organisms in limed soil, they found Salmonella organisms even at the highest lime levels, which indicated that Salmonella had regrown when the pH dropped. (p. 46)
EPA knowingly based the 1993 regulation on exclusions which do not exist for sewage sludge generated from a wastewater treatment plant. In a letter dated Feb. 7, 1986, to the Honorable Thomas P. O'Neil, Jr., Speaker. U.S. House of Representatives, The (EPA) Administrator, explained: "The purpose of the Domestic Sewage Study was to evaluate the impacts of waste discharged to public owned treatment works (POTW's) as a result of the Domestic Sewage Exclusion. The Domestic Sewage Exclusion, (specified in Section 1004(27) of RCRA) provides that a hazardous waste, when mixed with domestic sewage is no longer considered hazardous. Therefore, POTW's receiving hazardous waste in this manner are not subject to the RCRA treatment, storage and disposal facility requirements. The premise behind the Domestic Sewage Exclusion is that RCRA management of wastes within a POTW is unnecessary and redundant since these wastes are regulated under the Clean Water Act's regulatory programs." (NSA Public Facts # 100)
September 11, 1986 Applicability of RCRA to POTWs Receiving RCRA Hazardous Waste, "Generally, sewer line influents to POTWs will fall under the domestic sewage exclusion of 40 CFR 261.4(a) (1) and therefore are not considered to be "hazardous waste" under RCRA. However, waste received at a POTW by truck, rail or by a dedicated pipe (i.e., where the waste does not mix with domestic waste in the pipe before entering the POTW) is not covered by the domestic sewage exemption. If that waste is a listed hazardous waste or exhibits a hazardous waste characteristic, the POTW is required to obtain a RCRA permit for the treatment, storage and disposal of such waste.
For example, wastewater treatment sludge from the chemical conversion coating of aluminum is a listed hazardous waste in the RCRA regulations. If this waste is sent to a POTW via a sewer where the waste mixes with domestic sewage prior to reaching the POTW's treatment plant, then the waste would be covered by the domestic sewage exemption, and therefore would not subject the POTW to a RCRA permit. If, however, the same waste is trucked directly to the POTW, then the waste would still be considered "hazardous waste" and the POTW would be required to have a RCRA permit to accept such waste. FROM: Martha G. Prothro, Director, Permits Division (EN-336)" http://www.epa.gov/npdes/pubs/55_9-86.txtwww.deadlydeceit.com/EPA-hazmat.html
EPA claims sludge fertilizer is authorized under a domestic sewage exclusion in the RCRA. (27) The term ``solid waste'' includes sludge and sewage sludge, "but does not include solid or dissolved material in domestic sewage, or solid or dissolved materials in irrigation return flows or industrial discharges which are point sources subject to permits."
Yet EPA acknowledges in the regulation, "Domestic sewage is waste and waste water from humans or household operations that is discharged to or otherwise enters a treatment works." (40 CFR 503.9)
Furthermore, it claims, "This is a key definition, because the standards in the part 503 regulation apply to sewage sludge generated during the treatment of domestic sewage in a treatment works. When domestic sewage is in the influent to a treatment works, even if the influent also contains industrial wastewater, sewage sludge is generated during the treatment of the domestic sewage." (FR. 58, p. 9326 - 40 CFR 257 et al.)
Without using these "Terms of Art" EPA could not exclude sewage sludge from the environmental laws. Sewage sludge would be required to be placed in a landfill.
(26) The term ``sanitary landfill'' means a facility for the disposal of solid waste which meets the criteria published under section 6944 of this title,
Congress: (2) disposal of solid waste and hazardous waste in or on the land without careful planning and management can present a danger to human health and the environment.
RCRA (26A) The term ``sludge'' means any solid, semisolid or liquid waste generated from a municipal, commercial, or industrial wastewater treatment plant
RCRA(27) The term ``solid waste'' means any garbage, refuse, sludge from a waste treatment plant,
Congress: 7) it is the national policy that programs for the control of nonpoint sources of pollution be developed and implemented in an expeditious manner so as to enable the goals of this Act to be met through the control of both point and nonpoint sources of pollution
Furthermore, Under RCRA section 4004 (a), "...at a minimum, such criteria shall provide that a facility may be classified as a sanitary landfill and not an open dump only if there is no reasonable probability of adverse effects on health or the environment from disposal of solid waste at such facility.
EPA has said, "...If sewage sludge containing high levels of pathogenic organisms (e.g.,viruses, bacteria) or high concentrations of pollutants is improperly handled, the sludge could contaminate the soil, water, crops, livestock, fish and shellfish" (Preamble to 503, FR. 58, 32, p.9258).
Not only that, but "Sewage sludge with high concentrations of certain organic and metal pollutants may pose human health problems when disposed of in sludge only landfills (often referred to as mono-fills) or simply left on the land surface, if the pollutants leach from the sludge into ground water. Therefore, the pollutant concentrations may need to be limited or other measures such as impermeable liner's must be taken to ensure the ground water is not contaminated" (FR. 58, 32, p.9259)
Congress mandated EPA develop comprehensive regulations under the Clean Water Act (CWA) for the control of toxic pollutants in sludge and cautioned, "These regulations must be "adequate to protect human health and the environment from any reasonable anticipated adverse effect of each pollutant." Section 405(d) (2)(D)." (1993-FR. 58, p. 9250)
However, EPA acknowledged that it was not going to protect public health or the environment. "The Agency recognizes that today's rule [part 503] may not regulate all pollutants in sewage sludge that may adversely effect public health and the environment." (1993-FR. 58, 9253)
"The assessment does not quantify ecological losses caused by plant or animal toxicity, even though some numerical limits in today's proposal are based on animal and plant toxicity values. Methodologies and data are not yet available to accurately estimate the ecological impacts from the use and disposal of sludge." (FR. 54,p.5780)
EPA also found that, "In ocean disposal, certain pollutants often associated with municipal sludge, including mercury, cadmium, and polychlorinated biphenyls, can bioaccumulate. High levels of these pollutants can interfere with the reproductive systems of certain marine organisms, may produce toxic effects in aquatic life, or may present public health problems if individuals eat contaminated fish and shellfish." (FR. 58, 9259)
"EPA concluded that adequate protection of public health and the environment did not require the adoption of standards designed to protect human health or the environment under exposure conditions that are unlikely and where effects were not significant or widespread." (FR. 58, p. 9252) (Farm, home, garden)
(8) The term “environment” means (B) any other surface water, ground water, drinking water supply, land surface or subsurface strata, or ambient air within the United States or under the jurisdiction of the United States.
The ultimate insult to Congress and the American public was given in a letter to Congressman Conduit, dated October 1, 1993, by Martha G. Prothro, (EPA) Acting Assistant Administrator. She states that, "If the placement of sludge on land were considered to be "the normal application of fertilizer"--it--"would not give rise to CERCLA liability for the municipality generating the sewage sludge, the land applier, the land user or the land owner."
If sewage sludge was a safe fertilizer, there would be no need to remove the safety provisions of Federal Law, as the EPA claims it can do by simply considering sludge as a fertilizer. "If the placement of sludge on land were considered to be "the normal application of fertilizer," that placement could not give rise to liability under CERCLA." (Comprehensive Environmental Response and Liability Act) --- "Under CERCLA, protection from liability is also provided when there is a release of a CERCLA hazardous substance and the release occurs pursuant to Federal authorization. Thus under CERCLA, in defined circumstances, the application of sewage sludge to land in compliance with a permit required by section 405 of the Clean Water Act is a Federally permitted release as defined in CERCLA." ---"Consequent, releases of hazardous substances from the land application of sewage authorized under and in compliance with an NPDES permit would constitute a Federally permitted release." (FR. 58, p. 9262 - 40 CFR 257 et al.)
According to EPA, there is no difference in the sewage sludge for beneficial use under part 503 and sewage sludge that must be landfilled under 503. Under part 503, EPA offers the municipality an option to either violate the federal prohibition against open dumping of solid waste or comply with the law: "When the sewage sludge is not used to condition the soil or to fertilize crops or vegetation grown on the land, the sewage sludge is not being land applied. It is being disposed of on the land. In that case, the requirements in the subpart on surface disposal in the final part 503 regulation must be met." (FR. 58, p. 9330) (But even Class A Biosolid may be to comtaminated to be put in a surface disposal site under 503 which only list 3 of the nine metals.)
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) identified Priority Pollutants in regulations that deal with municipal and industrial wastewater (EPA, 1984) due to their toxicity to humans and the aquatic environment. These Priority Pollutants are divided into four classes; (1) heavy metals (oftentimes referred to as trace elements or trace metals) and cyanide, (2) volatile organic compounds, (3) semivolatile organic compounds, and (4) pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). In addition, nontoxic organic compounds in wastewater can be transformed into potential toxic chlorinated compounds, such as trihalomethanes, when chlorine is used for disinfection purposes (National Research Council, 1980)." (National Research Council Study, Use of Reclaimed Water and Sludge in Food Crop Production. 1996)
"(c) Section 301 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act is amended by adding at the end thereof the following new subsection: "(1) The Administrator may not modify any requirement of this section as it applies to any specific pollutant which is on the toxic pollutant list under section 307(a)(1) of this Act"." (91 STAT. 1950, PL 95-217, 1977, 33 USC 1311)
Not only that, but according to EPA, "The term "toxic pollutant" is not used in the final part 503 regulation because this generally is limited to the list of priority toxic pollutants developed by EPA. The Agency concluded that Congress intended that EPA develop the part 503 pollutant limits for a broader range of substances that might interfere with the use and disposal of sewage sludge, not just the 126 priority pollutants." (FR. 58, 32, p. 9327)
EPA wrote (1989) that five of the listed twenty-one carcinogens in sludge are carcinogenic (cancer causing agents) when inhaled in dust -- Arsenic, Beryllium, Cadmium, Chromium IV and Nickel. (FR 54, p. 5777)
On the second page (110) of Chapter 6, (Risk Assessment) EPA admits that it did not evaluate any of the hazardous metals in sludge because it considered them to be non-cancer causing agents for the 14 pathways evaluated. Not only that, but EPA admitted it did not evaluate any organic chemical that was not either already banned, no longer manufactured or had restricted use.
So we know the regulators were not fools when they told us there were only nine metals in sludge that may kill us and destroy the environment. They were smart enough to create and sell a regulation based on exclusions in the law, constitutional immunity, and a direct disregard for the laws. There is several long lists of toxic pollutants EPA knows may cause death, disease, cancer as well as physical and mental disorders, such as:
A) any substance designated pursuant to section 311(b)(2)(A) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act [33 U.S. C. 1321 (b)(2)(A)], (B) any element, compound, mixture, solution, or substance designated pursuant to section 9602 of this title, (C) any hazardous waste having the characteristics identified under or listed pursuant to section 3001 of the Solid Waste Disposal Act [42 U.S.C. 6921] (D) any toxic pollutant listed under section 307(a) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act [33 U.S.C. 1317 (a)], (E) any hazardous air pollutant listed under section 112 of the Clean Air Act [42 U.S.C. 7412], and (F) any imminently hazardous chemical substance or mixture with respect to which the Administrator has taken action pursuant to section 7 of the Toxic Substances Control Act [15 U.S.C. 2606].