Sludge as a Benefit

A Program for Beneficial Reuse*

DEP’s 14 wastewater treatment plants handle an average of 1.3 billion gallons of wastewater every day, which generate approximately 1,200 tons per day of solid byproducts that are also known as biosolids or treated sludge. Environmental Protection Commissioner Carter Strickland today announced the selection of WeCare Organics in response to a Request for Proposals to transport, process, and market biosolids for beneficial reuse.

Under the new proposed contract, WeCare Organics will bring up to 400 tons per day of biosolids to its processing site in rural eastern Pennsylvania where it will be stabilized with lime and made into a product suitable for beneficial reuse. WeCare will use the organic material for mine reclamation projects or sell it as compost to garden centers, nurseries, and landscape supply companies. Once approved, the new five-year contract will start in spring 2012 at a cost of approximately $56 million.

“Our selection today fulfills (the) promise to process sludge in a beneficial way … Converting our sludge from waste to a valuable resource moves us closer to achieving Mayor Bloomberg’s vision for a greener, greater New York.” said Commissioner Strickland.

In June 2010, DEP terminated its contract with the New York Organic Fertilizer Company due to its increasing costs in processing approximately 600 of the 1,200 tons of sludge that the wastewater treatment process produces each day for use as fertilizer. At the time the contract was terminated, it cost approximately $30 million per year. Under the new proposed contract, WeCare Organics, based out of Jordan, NY will collect up to 400 tons a day of biosolids after it has been dewatered at a cost of about $11 million per year — a roughly 50% savings over the NYOFCo contract on a cost per ton of biosolids basis.

Sewage sludge is the bulk of the residual material removed during the wastewater treatment process. Wastewater treatment plants use physical, chemical and biological processes to remove on average more than 90% of the organic material in sewage. Raw sludge is first digested in oxygen-free tanks where it is heated and mixed for several days. The final treated sludge, also known as biosolids, is treated to remove nearly all of the pathogens that can be found in raw sludge.

Impact Environmental Consulting is committed to performing responsive, efficient and comprehensive environmental services that remain current with these changes. For a complete listing of services, please visit www.impactenvironmental.com.

*Extracted from:http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/html/home/home.shtml


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One Step Closer to High-Quality Water

On-Site Stormwater Controls for Construction Projects

DEP Commissioner Strickland is trumpeting the significance of the New Construction Projects Stormwater Rule as crucial to the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan, and particularly as another benchmark in ongoing efforts to improve overall water quality in the region.

“New developments will now be part of the solution in our efforts to have a cleaner and more beautiful harbor,” said Commissioner Strickland.

“In the past, runoff from buildings and pavement added significant volume in our combined sewer system that ultimately discharges a mix of stormwater and sewage directly into the city’s surrounding waterways when it rains. The new stormwater rule requires new construction and major building alterations to capture substantially more runoff through cost-effective measures, providing additional capacity in the combined sewer system. This new rule is the result of years of discussions with real estate, development and environmental stakeholders. It is an integral part of the groundbreaking NYC Green Infrastructure Plan, which proposes a more sustainable and adaptive approach to improve the water quality in New York Harbor for improved development and recreational opportunities, while also saving billions of dollars for our ratepayers.”

Steven Spinola, President of the Real Estate Board of New York, has said “The stormwater rule, as a critical part of the City’s Green Infrastructure Plan that will reap billions in savings over 20 years, will provide great relief to residents and businesses during economically difficult times.”

DEP itself employs nearly 6,000 employees and has a robust capital program with a planned $13.2 billion in investments over the next 10 years. Financial projections have shown these expenditures may be expected to create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year over this period.

New York City, like other older urban areas, is largely serviced by a combined sewer system where stormwater and wastewater are carried through a single pipe. During heavy storms, the system can exceed its capacity and must discharge a mix of stormwater and wastewater – called a combined sewer overflow, or CSO – into New York Harbor. Enhancing an already existing requirement, the rule will employ a wide range of on-site stormwater control techniques to all new development, redevelopment and major alterations in combined sewer areas. DEP estimates that the rule will limit stormwater discharge on development lots to approximately 10% of present permitted flow to the combined sewer system using cost-effective detention, infiltration, and recycling techniques such as blue roofs, green roofs, or subsurface gravel beds and stormwater chambers. This rule will lead to on-site control systems that are projected to reduce combined sewer overflows by as much as 800 million gallons over the next 20 years based on historic development trends. No existing homes or developments will be affected by the new rule. The rule delivers a key component of the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan announced by Mayor Bloomberg in 2010. The NYC Green Infrastructure Plan proposed a total investment of $2.4 billion over the next 20 years in green infrastructure to improve harbor water quality by capturing and retaining stormwater runoff before it enters the sewer system. The cost impact of the new standard on a project’s development is estimated to be an additional 0.3% to 1.5% of total construction costs.

The new rule can be viewed at ww.nyc.gov/dep<http://www.nyc.gov/dep

Impact Environmental Consulting is committed to performing responsive, efficient and comprehensive environmental services that remain current with these changes. For a complete listing of services, please visit www.impactenvironmental.com.


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