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Biosolids News

May 15, 2011

NBP News




City of Richmond, VA Celebrates NBP EMS Certification

 The City of Richmond, VA Public Utilities Department (PUD) held a celebration of its NBP environmental management system (EMS) certification on May 9. The City of Richmond’s EMS underwent a successful third-party audit from NSF-International Strategic Registrations on January 14, 2011 and became the 32nd organization to achieve NBP certification.  City of Richmond EMS Third-Party Audit Report from NSF   City of Richmond PUD web page

Albany, Millersburg Water Reclamation Facility, OR Successfully Maintains NBP EMS Certification

The Albany-Millersburg Water Reclamation Facility in Albany, OR successfully maintained its NBP environmental management system (EMS) certification following an interim audit conducted by NSF- International Strategic Registrations on April 30, 2011. The results of the re-verification audit are positive and it is the decision of NSF that the organization’s EMS maintain its “Certification” status.  The scope of the third party re-verification audit included review of all of the core element requirements. The physical biosolids related facilities included in the audit and visited during the on-site audit were the liquid water process operations; the solids stabilization, conditioning, and handling facilities; the solids storage bins, the biosolids truck loading operations, and the “talking water” gardens. Interim Audit Report

Alexandria, VA Sanitation Authority Successfully Maintains NBP EMS Certification

The Alexandria Sanitation Authority successfully maintained its NBP environmental management system (EMS) certification following an interim audit conducted by NSF- International Strategic Registrations on May 2, 2011. The scope of the first interim audit included a review of areas generally related to the organization’s progress toward goals and objectives; EMS outcome requirements for environmental performance, regulatory compliance, relations with interested parties, and quality biosolids management practices; actions taken to correct minor nonconformances; the management review process; and corrective and preventive action requests and responses. This review generally included requirements found in elements 1, 2, 5, 6, 9, 14, 15, 16 and 17. The specific elements that were audited in their entirety were 3, 10 and 13. ASA 2011 Interim Audit Report

NBP New Free Biosolids Management Training & Assistance Opportunity

Thanks to funding supplied by EPA and WEF, the National Biosolids Partnership is offering an exclusive opportunity to 15 public utility agencies or “preparers” to obtain no-cost professional training and assistance to develop a biosolids management program. This program will follow the guidelines the NBP has published on its’ website and is designed, through a combination of webinars, group training and personal site visits to prepare the agency for a final third-party audit to obtain full NBP certification. There are currently 32 agencies which have obtained certification and many of their success stories are on the website as direct evidence of the many benefits of this program. NBP opened this recruitment period with an introductory webinar archived here for your review of some of the details and benefits from two currently certified agencies along with speakers from EPA and the NBP. The recruitment will close on June 1, 2011. The program is expected to be completed by August 1, 2012. To apply for an opportunity to join in this year’s class, please fill in our application and return it to the following address by June 1. Contact Jim Cox at or 703-684-2438 for more information. New NBP FAQ Biosolids Training Brochure

To view NBP Certified and Active Organizations, click here

To view NBP EMS Documents, click here  

Around the Nation




Blue Plains to Modernize Antiquated Sewers 

The The May 17 Washington Post reported that city, state and federal officials plan to gather Tuesday at the Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant to break ground on a $1.4 billion, three-year effort to reduce pollution. And in the fall, they plan to start work on a $2.6 billion effort to reduce wastewater overflows by updating sewers built before the Civil War. Tuesday’s groundbreaking will begin construction of a $1 billion facility to reduce nitrogen in wastewater. Nitrogen is a pollutant that helps create dead zones in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries by sucking up oxygen. The next step will be installation of a $400 million thermo-hydrolysis system in which tanks pressure-cook solid waste to kill pathogens, feed the waste to bacteria that excrete methane, and use the methane to generate enough electricity to power 40 percent of Blue Plains, the world’s largest wastewater treatment plant. The process would turn sludge into a super fertilizer called a Class A biosolids.  Blue Plains is considered a state-of-the-art facility, but the underground pipes leading to it date to another century. In an effort to end massive sewage overflows when it rains, officials at DC Water, which runs Blue Plains, plan to build a pipe as wide as a Metro tunnel about 100 feet underground from Nationals Park to the wastewater plant. Additional pipes are planned for other parts of the city over the next 14 years. Full Story

City of Waco, TX Cutting Energy Costs Through Innovative Practices  

The May 2011 issue of the Treatment Plant Operator reports that the City of Waco, TX Metropolitan Area Regional Sewerage has steadily increased efficiency over the last eight years, cutting its energy use by 35 percent through innovative practices for an annual savings of about $675,000. Its focus on renewable energy and efficiency earned an Environmental Excellence Award from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality in 2010. From 2002 to 2005, the plant reduced electricity demand from the grid an average of 12 percent per year by increasing methane production in its anaerobic digesters. It now produces one-third of its own power. With a current average flow of 25 mgd, the 37.8 mgd (design) plant will soon be generating even more of its own power while increasing its total capacity to 45 mgd and its high- strength waste processing by 200,000 gpd. That will be achieved when three retired digesters are brought back to life this year and updated with dome covers, new mixers, heat exchangers and waste gas burners to achieve full acetogenic and methanogenic anaerobic digestion. Full Story

On-Farm Anaerobic Digester Trends in the U.S.

The April 2011 issue of BioCycle reports on On-Farm Anaerobic Digester Trends in the U.S.  EPA’s AgSTAR is a voluntary outreach and educational program promoting the recovery and use of methane from livestock manure. EPA and USDA — whose Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) and other mechanisms has helped fund on-farm biogas projects — have been working together since AgSTAR’s inception in 1993 and in May 2010 signed an interagency agreement to promote digester systems nationwide. AgSTAR is also working closely with the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy and its Dairy Power Program, which signed a Memorandum of Understanding with USDA in December 2009 with the intent of helping reduce the carbon footprint of the dairy industry by 25 percent by 2020. Since the USDA first added an energy title to the federal Farm Bill in 2003, the agency has awarded more than $40 million in grants to more than 100 on-farm digester systems. About 20 AD projects have come online annually since 2003 (many of these received USDA funding assistance), accounting for more than 140 of the 167 currently in existence in the U.S. Full Story 

Orange County Sanitation District’s Wastewater Recycling Garners Awards 

The May 5 Surf City, CA Voice reported that in 2003, Orange County Sanitation District (OCSD became the first wastewater agency in the nation to be certified for its Biosolids Management Program (BMP) by the National Biosolids Partnership, a non-profit coalition of water quality organizations that recognizes biosolids programs for sustainable management practices that go beyond regulatory compliance. OCSD serves 21 cities with a total population of 2.5 million and in 2010 treated an average daily wastewater inflow of 208 million gallons, enough to fill Angel stadium nearly three times. Its BMP, which converts the solid components of sewage into either soil amendments or fuel, has recently won awards for innovation and environmental stewardship. Full Story

To view NBP News Center, click here

To view biosolids contacts across the nation, click here





Residuals and Biosolids 2011: Adapting Residuals Management to a Changing Climate
  • WEF is proud to present the 25th Annual Residuals and Biosolids Conference, focusing this year on local and national perspectives on sustainable biosolids management technologies and programs that instill these new policies. The conference will be held May 22–25, 2011 at the Sacramento, CA Convention Center. Registration information 

    Four Innovative Pre-Conference Workshops
  • 18 Technical Sessions
    Topics addressed this year include building public support and addressing political and media issues, future opportunities and emerging technologies, marketing of biosolids and residuals products, environmental management systems, thickening and dewatering, odor and pathogen control, and much more. View the Draft Agenda (PDF).

  • Wastewater Challenge!
    The 2011 WEF Wastewater Challenge, taking place Sunday, May 22 at 8:00 am, is a national competition that's both challenging and fun. This hands-on event requires teams of students to treat agricultural runoff from a biosolids compost facility in order to protect a wetland ecosystem, using an assortment of household products. For additional information, visit
  • Friends of Biosolids Social Event at the California State Railroad Museum
    Join your colleagues Tuesday, May 24 at the California State Railroad Museum located in Old Sacramento. Widely regarded as North America’s most popular railroad museum, there is something here for everyone! A $20 ticket includes a five minute bus ride, two drink tickets, and generous hors d’oeuvres.  

Residuals & Biosolids 2011 Specialty Conference Meeting Schedule

Saturday, May 21                                                                 Time

·        NBP Meeting with Certified Agencies                               1:00 – 5:00 pm

Monday, May 23

  • Agricultural & Ind. Byproducts Subcommittee                  7:30 – 8:30 pm
  • ABBA Biosolids Organization Luncheon Meeting            12:00-1:30 pm
  • Outreach & Education Subcommittee                              4:30-5:30 pm

Tuesday, May 24

  • Bioenergy Technology Subcommittee                               7:00-8:30 am
  • Specialty Conference Subcommittee                              12:30-2:00 pm
  • Carbon Task Force/Biofuels Work Group                          4:30-5:30 pm

Wednesday, May 25

·         Residuals & Biosolids Committee                                    7:00-8:30 am

Residuals & Biosolids Committee Meeting Materials and Updates


2011 Residuals & Biosolids Specialty Conference On-Site Program

2012 WEF Residuals & Biosolids Special Conference – Call for Abstracts

The 2012 WEF Residuals & Biosolids Specialty Conference – Call for Abstracts is now open.  The conference will be held from March 25-28, 2012 at the Raleigh Convention Center in Raleigh, NC. Abstract submittal deadline is June 24, 2011.

·         Submit Abstract Online  

·         Workshop or Session Proposal Form  

·         Call for Abstracts (PDF)

More information from WEF

To view WEF conferences and webcasts, click here





NBP April 21 Implementing the New Sewage Sludge Incineration MACT Standard Webcast Audio Recording Available for Viewing  

The audio recording for the National Biosolids Partnership (NBP) April 21 webcast on Implementing the New Sewage Sludge Incineration MACT Standard – Issues and Challenges Ahead is also available for viewing by clicking here. The Power Point PDF files for the April 21 webcast and past NBP webcasts are available for downloading by clicking here. 

To view NBP webcast presentations, click here