To The Daily Sun,
I am writing this in response to The Sun's Jan. 23 article about the petitioned anti-sludge ordinance in Gilmanton.
Sewage sludge is probably the most pollutant-rich material of the 21st century. Of the 90,000 industrial chemicals in commerce today, most end up in sewage. Every New Hampshire entity connected to a sewer can legally pipe its hazardous waste into the facility as long as it fills out the required forms. As these pollutants are removed from the waste water, most end up in sludge.
This includes not just lead, mercury, arsenic, cadmium, and zinc, but a vast array of other unregulated or inadequately-regulated pollutants such as PCBs, dioxins, EDCs, PAHs, flame retardants, phthalates, solvents, and PFOAs, most of which are highly toxic, persistent, accumulate in the food chain and soil, and can damage organisms in tiny amounts, in parts per trillion.
Hundreds of sludge-exposed neighbors in 38 states have reported serious respiratory symptoms, including asthma attacks, nausea, vomiting, skin rashes, and sinus infections. Several deaths — including one in New Hampshire — have been linked to biosolids exposure.
We are glad that the Planning Board will continue this conversation and not just listen to anecdotal reports of farmers, or to Mike Rainey, who has publicly referred to credible unbiased sludge research by the internationally renowned Cornell Waste Institute as "garbage."
For credible peer reviewed scientific information about the many risks linked to biosolids see http://www.sludgenews.org/resources/
For the inside story of how sludge brokers, DES, EPA, NEBRA, industry-funded researchers, and sewage treatment plant trade groups collaborate to cover up hundreds of harmful incidents linked to sludge exposure, ignore or manipulate scientific data, and silence critics, see http://www.sludgefacts.org/IJOEH_1104_Snyder.pdf
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