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EPA orders 28 facilities to apply for biosolids permit

Release Date: 5/5/2003
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      Denver -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ordered 20 Colorado and eight Montana facilities to apply for sewage sludge permit coverage to comply with section 402 of the Clean Water Act. The permit requires facilities which generate, use or dispose of biosolids to complete certain monitoring and reporting requirements, and is designed to improve facilities' compliance with existing biosolids regulations. Biosolids, or sewage sludge, are treated organic solids from wastewater treatment plants which are suitable for recycling as a soil amendment.

      Biosolids from domestic sewage must be properly managed to ensure that there is no threat to public health or the environment. If the biosolids are not properly managed, people and animals could be exposed to unsafe levels of pathogens such as bacteria and viruses that still exist in the biosolids.

      Most of the regulated facilities have already complied with the permit application requirement. Those that have not complied have 30 days from receipt of the order to comply or face penalties.

      The general permit became effective August 16, 2002. Facilities requiring coverage under the general permit need to file a Notice of Intent (NOI) to be covered under the permit. The NOIs were due November 15, 2002, and EPA sent notices to the affected facilities prior to August 2002 reminding them of the permit coverage requirement. EPA has received required NOIs from over 150 facilities.

      The NOIs require basic facility information, including a description of the facility, its biosolids treatment method, testing results, disposal practices, and related information. The information requested is consistent with the facilities' standard annual reporting requirements.
Facilities which failed to apply for the permit and received Orders:
City of Alamosa
City of Aurora
Town of Berthoud
Cortez Sanitation District (3 wastewater treatment plants)
City of Delta
Inverness Sanitation District
City of Gunnison
City of Idaho Springs
City of Lafayette
City of Loveland
Town of Lyons
Pueblo West Metro District
City of Salida
Town of Telluride
City of Trinidad (2 wastewater treatment plants)
West Glenwood Springs Sanitation District
City of Woodland Park

Big Butte Compost Butte, MT
Bigfork Sanitation District
EKO Compost Missoula MT
Glacier Gold, LLC Olney, MT
City of Lewiston
City of Libby
City of Livingston
City of Missoula