The mission of Northwest Biosolids is to advance environmental sustainability through the beneficial use of biosolids
We strive to:
Be the Pacific Northwest regional voice for biosolids
Share historic and current knowledge and issues
Advance the knowledge of biosolids management through collaboration with research institutions
Increase the use of biosolids products and broaden beneficial use markets by understanding customer needs
In 1987 Wastewater utilities across the Pacific Northwest banded together to create a unified regional voice for biosolids recycling.
The Clean Water Act, passed in 1972, required full solids treatment, leading to an influx of treated solids and multiple rules regulating their use. While the national biosolids regulation was released in 1994 following a rigorous risk assessment, there continued to be conflicting local rules and opinions that led to confusing biosolids programs and rate-payers over the most responsible and productive use for biosolids. In 1993, Northwest Biosolids incorporated as the 1st regional biosolids association in the United States with a hefty charge to research the flood of questions laid out before utilities and their communities:
- What is in biosolids?
- How do treatment methods effect biosolids?
- When and where is it safe to use?
- Are there benefits to using biosolids?
- What happens to contaminants in biosolids?
- What are the best markets for biosolids?
The organization began pooling resources to partner with local universities to fund research projects that helped answer these questions. This access to research allowed Northwest Biosolids to have an informed voice in regulations development and outreach to our communities. For nearly 30 years, this model of a regional biosolids network has helped to shape regulations, inform best management practices and share practical answers to biosolids use in our region.