Johns Hopkins raps AP story on lead experiment

Full story: Baltimore Sun
For about 20 years, Dr. Michael Klag has used a fertilizer made from Milwaukee municipal sludge on azaleas and yew shrubs at his suburban Baltimore home. Read more
Jackson Browne

Sparta, NJ

#1 Jun 14, 2008
Regarding Ritter’s new AP version of an unwise lead abatement project carried out in a poor Baltimore neighborhood, the AP should have stuck with its earlier coverage of this project by John Heilprin and Kevin Vineys. The earlier version was totally accurate. This one is not.
Contrary to what it states, EPAs own documents and peer reviewed published research all indicate that sewage sludge composts are not risk-free. Sludge compost can legally contain mercury, cadmium, arsenic, high levels of lead viable pathogens and thousands of unregulated industrial chemicals that are not regulated. This material should never have been spread on the front yards in residential neighborhoods.
Sludge victim

Lemoyne, PA

#2 Jun 14, 2008
Why didn't Hopkins use real dirt instead of "Compost"made from Baltimore Cities Sewage Sludge??? Class A sludge can have just as many harmful pollutants as Class B just not detectable amounts of one of the 2 bacteria they test for and lower levels of the 9 metals they test for. The other Hundreds of thousands of pollutants can still be there. AP needs to do an indepth story on how the Sewage Treatment plants process the sludge,a detailed story on Orgro would be good, once that is public knowledge a first grader will come up with what all could still be in it. Hospital waste(which there are many in Balt.), Industrial waste, pharmacuticals, mortuary waste and everything else that goes down the sewers is in sludge and composting it does not remove many of the toxins. Many bacteria and viruses, prions etc are still present. Super bugs like MRSA are probably still alive and well. The original article done by AP was more accurate and truthful, sludge is sludge, some might be better than others but it all is bad because there is no process they do to remove the possible pollutants. If the country only knew the rest of the story about how Class B sludge has been crammed down rural Americas throats making many sick they would kring..........
Sharon Force

Nashville, TN

#3 Jun 14, 2008
It's about time politicians get outraged and demand further investigation into the land-application of sludge--an ill-conceived, EPA-sanctioned policy that puts the environment and all life at risk.
Unfortunately, those Baltimore families are NOT the only ones who were...who ARE unwitting participants in/victims of the 'grand experiement' of 'beneficial use'. More than half the sludge generated in this country--5 million dry tons--is spread annually on citrus groves, fruit orchards, dairy lands...'from sea to shining sea'.
Another outstanding Associated Press story, "Sewage-Based Fertilizer Safety Doubted" (3/08) reported a settlement on behalf of Georgia dairy farmers in compensation for loss of cattle and permanently-polluted farmland as a direct result of using treated sludge--'biosolids'--as fertilizer.
Perhaps those investigating the most recent outbreak of salmonella in the nation's food supply would do well to determine if the affected tomatoes were 'sludged'!
Balto Dad

Windsor Mill, MD

#4 Jun 15, 2008
Sludge victim wrote:
Why didn't Hopkins use real dirt instead of "Compost"made from Baltimore Cities Sewage Sludge??? Class A sludge can have just as many harmful pollutants as Class B just not detectable amounts of one of the 2 bacteria they test for and lower levels of the 9 metals they test for. The other Hundreds of thousands of pollutants can still be there. AP needs to do an indepth story on how the Sewage Treatment plants process the sludge,a detailed story on Orgro would be good, once that is public knowledge a first grader will come up with what all could still be in it. Hospital waste(which there are many in Balt.), Industrial waste, pharmacuticals, mortuary waste and everything else that goes down the sewers is in sludge and composting it does not remove many of the toxins. Many bacteria and viruses, prions etc are still present. Super bugs like MRSA are probably still alive and well. The original article done by AP was more accurate and truthful, sludge is sludge, some might be better than others but it all is bad because there is no process they do to remove the possible pollutants. If the country only knew the rest of the story about how Class B sludge has been crammed down rural Americas throats making many sick they would kring..........
Man, read the study. I'm sure it's outlined there how they treated it.

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