ORLANDO — An advisory committee suggested Wednesday several tweaks to how the state regulates spreading Class B biosolids on farmland, but suggested no dramatic changes. The panel assembled by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection did not, for example, support expanding a ban on using partially treated human waste, also commonly called sewage sludge, in South Florida to the St. Johns River watershed. The point of the panel, said Drew Bartlett, DEP’s deputy secretary for ecosystem restoration, “is to get to the point where we provide the level of protection to the rest of the state” the ban provides to South Florida. More: TCPalm’s award-winning “Laying Waste” investigation on biosolids Still, much of the panel’s discussion here Wednesday was on how biosolids appear to be polluting Indian River County’s Blue Cypress Lake, the headwaters of the river. More: Is sewage sludge from ranch fertilizer polluting Blue Cypress Lake? “Biosolids have value,” said Martin Burk, a representative of H&H Liquid Sludge Disposal Inc., one of the largest biosolid reuse and disposal companies in Florida. H&H hauled biosolids to Pressley Ranch near Blue Cypress Lake. “They should be used responsibly.” Burk asked the panel to “let science be your guide. Don’t get into personal feelings about waste.” Keep an eye on Panel members agreed biosolids… Read full this story
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