Wednesday, November 10, 2010

So, What Are We Killing Actually?

I was at a sewage conference last week and one of the biggest issues are Sanitary Sewer Overflows caused by the flushing of antibacterial wipes down the toilet. They ruin and plug lift station pumps. Ooops.

here is an article that details the algacidal properties of these agents. The other is how these compounds are now making it back to the environment.

After a while, you have to wonder whether what we are intentionally killing in terms of microbes is worth what we are unintentionally killing in terms of phyto and zooplankton. And are we breeding the dreaded superbugs. Already, endocrine disruptors that make it through wastewater plants are changing the genetics in the plants that are grown in the biosolids. But if you can't use the biosolids for fertilizer, where do you bury it all? Already, the Colorado plains take most of the biosolids generated by NYC. Is there room in NYC for 80 train car loads per week to be buried?

These are honest questions. How much waste do we generate that there are no perfect solutions for?


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