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From : 
"hshields" <hshields@worldpath.net>
Reply-To :  "hshields" <hshields@worldpath.net>
To :  "PENNSYLVANIA - BEN OOSTDAM" <boostdam@hotmail.com>
Subject :  Fw: Sierra Club: EPA SEWAGE SLUDGE RULES DO NOT PROTECT HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Date :  Mon, 16 Jul 2001 10:08:52 -0400
----- Original Message -----
From: Len Martin <http://lw2fd.hotmail.msn.com/cgi-bin/compose?curmbox=F000000001&a=918ffa097f7986946993ced1fd5f0de3&mailto=1&to=lcmartin@csrlink.net&msg=MSG995292257.32&start=2357562&len=16607&src=&type=x>
To: Helane Shields <http://lw2fd.hotmail.msn.com/cgi-bin/compose?curmbox=F000000001&a=918ffa097f7986946993ced1fd5f0de3&mailto=1&to=hshields@worldpath.net&msg=MSG995292257.32&start=2357562&len=16607&src=&type=x>
Sent: Monday, March 26, 2001 10:42 AM
Subject: Sierra Club: EPA SEWAGE SLUDGE RULES DO NOT PROTECT HEALTH AND THE
ENVIRONMENT


> EPA SEWAGE SLUDGE RULES DO NOT PROTECT HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT
> -
> HOW YOU CAN LEARN MORE AND HELP
>
> Last week, on March 14-15, 2001, the National Academy of Science's new
> "Committee on Toxicants and Pathogens in Biosolid Fertilizers" had their
>
> first meeting as part of a new 18-month study of the adequacy of the
> science and methodology behind EPA's regulations for the management of
> sewage sludge, the "biosolids rules"(1).  Since this program began in
> 1993, neighbors of sludge sites, concerned citizens, environmental
> groups,
> and scientists have protested the weaknesses of this program and the
> harm
> resulting from it.  Recents reports from both the EPA Office of
> Inspector
> General and the National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety
> have
> reinforced their concerns (2,3).  A major congressional hearing in March
>
> 2000 featured invited speakers who testified that public health and the
> environment are not adequaately protected (4,5). The National Academy of
>
> Sciences (NAS) was then asked to review the science behind EPA's
> biosolids
> standards and how the relevant chemical pollutants were identified.
> There will be additional meetings of this committee; the next one will
> be
> June 4-5, 2001 in Irvine, California, but the public can communicate
> with
> the committee at any time through its public access web site(1).
>
> A great deal of information is now available to assist concerned
> citizens in
> preparing comments on the need for much more stringent regulation of
> sewage
> sludge.  The March 2000 EPA Office of Inspector General's audit report,
> "Biosolids Management and Enforcement" (3), concluded:  "The EPA does
> not
> have an effective program for ensuring compliance with the land
> application
> (of sewage sludge) requirements of Part 503.  Accordingly, while EPA
> promotes land application, EPA cannot assure the public that current
> land
> application practices are protective of human health and the
> environment."
> The report also criticized EPA for lack of enforcement and for not
> maintaining data on cumulative sludge applications, a requirement of the
> 503
> rules.
>
> The  National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
> report
> (3) evaluated worker complaints, interviewed workers, and tested air and
>
> waste samples.  They concluded "The detection of enteric bacteria in a
> limited number of air and bulk samples confirms the potential for
> workers to
> be exposed to organisms which have been associated with gastrointestinal
>
> symptoms and illness. Operations where employees are potentially exposed
> to
> Class B biosolids include transport, loading, unloading, and application
>
> activities. Other potentially exposed workers include compost workers,
> surface miners working around reclamation sites, and farmers."   NIOSH
> recommended additional practices to prevent the risk of disease among
> workers who are exposed on the job to biosolids used to fertilize
> agricultural lands or mine reclamation sites.  "Workers are the
> individuals
> most likely to be exposed to biosolids, but practical steps can be taken
> to
> limit exposures and prevent the possible risk of disease transmission.
> In
> the absence of definitive information about the extent of risk to
> workers,
> our recommendations are based on good public health practice."
>
> In 1997, scientists at Cornell University documented the problems with
> EPA's
> "biosolids rules" in their report "The Case for Caution:
> Recommendations
> for the Land Application of Sewage Sludge" (6).  It was updated in 1999.
>
> They concluded that "Current US federal regulations governing the land
> application of sewage sl