The Racine Wastewater Utility has a project due Jan. 27 for the hauling, storage and land spreading/disposal of about 12,000 tons of wastewater Class B biosolids on an annual basis.
Construction of a biosolids storage building in Racine County is needed to meet current DNR requirements of 180 days of biosolids storage.
Proposals will be evaluated based on price and other tangible benefits surrounding handling and beneficial reuse of the biosolids material in accordance with the state’s Department of Natural Resources regulations governing the materials.
It will be interesting to see if this project actually goes through after all of the problems the Neenah-Menahsa Sewerage Commission had with the proposed biosolids storage building/biosolid spreading on agricultural lands in Greenville, which was cancelled soon after a Rapid Health Impact Assessment report (PDF) was released in late October.
More than 1,000 residents signed a petition to stop the project. The report and petition was instigated after citizens learned of the project at a town meeting in late September.
The World Health Organization defines HIA as a “combination of procedures, methods and tools by which a policy, program or project may be judged as to its potential effects on the health of a population, and the distribution of those effects within the population.”
The purpose of the Health Impact Assessment for the proposed Greenville facility is to discuss the health impacts of a biosolids storage facility being proposed and to identify ways to decrease any adverse health impacts of the proposed biosolids storage facility.
The HIA prepared for Greenville was limited to looking at health issues most frequently cited in citizen forums (pathogens, chemicals, odor and groundwater contamination) due to the short time Outagamie County had to produce the report. Greenville homeowners expressed concerns about pathogens, toxic chemicals, decreased property values, smell and truck traffic, among other things.
If you live near the area of this proposed project, it may do you well to take a good look at the Greenville HIA and it may be an idea to request the same of Racine County if such a report for the proposed facility and area involved doesn’t already exist.
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Jeff Moore is a data reporter at The Daily Reporter. He can be reached at 414-225-1819.