What's in My Organic Fertilizer?

There seems to be something seriously (and intentionally) deceptive, if not downright criminal about biosolids being labeled as natural and organic fertilizer. Don’t know what biosolids are? That’s because the sewage sludge industry (yes, there is a sewage sludge industry with its own lobby) has created the euphemism biosolids to replace the term sewage sludge. That’s right. Human waste. Industrial waste. Hospital waste. The end product of wastewater treatment plants.

Sewage sludge regularly tests positive for thousands of contaminants: a host of heavy metals, flame-retardants, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, pharmaceuticals, phthalates, dioxins, steroids and hormones. Only a handful of these contaminants are even regulated by the U.S. government, but somehow spreading this sludge on farm fields as fertilizer to grow our food seems like a good idea?

How is this possible? Well, we used to dump sewage sludge into the ocean. Then we realized it killed everything on the ocean or where it was dumped. So in 1993 (when the 1987 ocean dumping ban took effect) the EPA, using outdated science, and undoubtedly in u- enced by lobbyists, created new regulations for ‘land application,’ claiming sludge could betrans- formed into ‘compost.’What? Compost? Really!? Not only will ‘land application’ pollute the whole chain of life for which soil is the base, scientists also found that noroviruses often survive the treatment process.

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