In 2013, the biosolids land application program at a mid-sized Pennsylvania municipal water reclamation facility was jeopardized due to unrelenting nuisance odor complaints from neighbors near farm fields receiving biosolids. The Authority engaged Material Matters, Inc. to assist with the investigation to improve product quality and develop practical operational protocols for routine monitoring and control. Material Matters conducted a study at the facility to assess the quality of the biosolids generated at the facility, and, in turn, develop a strategy to perform in-house odor testing to improve Class B alkaline-biosolids product quality.
The City of Chattanooga personnel expressed an interest in pursuing Class A Exceptional Quality (EQ) designation for the biosolids generated from their JVAP Filter Press. Material Matters prepared a sampling plan and analyzed data from months of sampling events to support the Class A/EQ status for the JVAP system. We worked closely with Chattanooga personnel to develop protocols for processing and testing in order to meet state and federal standards. Based on analysis of the data collected, Chattanooga proved the JVAP process met Class A EQ criteria, allowing the City to have additional flexibility and options for the final disposition of their biosolids.
Material Matters was enlisted in the spring of 2013 by the Wyoming Valley Sanitary Authority (WVSA) to assist with developing a beneficial use program that would replace their existing biosolids disposal via on-site incineration with disposal of the ash in a local landfill. Material Matters conducted a lime addition study at the WVSA wastewater treatment plant to determine how much lime addition is required to: meet pathogen reduction (PR) standards and vector attraction reduction (VAR) standards; manage nuisance odors generated by undigested biosolids cake; and determine if a lime-stabilized biosolids beneficial use program is a cost-effective option compared with incineration. The evaluation included a bench-scale lime addition/mixing study determine the optimal lime addition rate for PR/VAR and odor control, and was followed by with a full-scale pilot at the WWTP. Material Matters also identified potential beneficial users for the Authority, and completed a cost analysis to confirm that lime addition / beneficial use is a cost-effective option for the Authority.