Combined sewage overflow, although more visible, is not as serious as remedying the problem by piping the polluted water into sewage treatment plants. Here the toxic pollutants in the waste water are REMOVED, so the treated water can be returned to the canal, but the removed pollutants end up in the resulting sludge or biosolids, which is then conveniently shipped out of state and dumped on rural farm land as "fertilizer," sickening people and animals, polluting wells, and degrading healthy soil. Biosolids generated in urban industrialized centers contain thousands of industrial chemicals. Every entity connected to a sewer is permitted to discharge, every month, 33 pounds of hazardous waste into sewage treatment plants. This includes hospital waste, superfund leachates and fracking fluids. In addition sewage treatment plants are breeding grounds for antibiotic resistant bacteria.
Good news for the canal is bad news for the land where we graze our animals and grow our food. For the many serious risks associated with using sludge as fertilizer, visit
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