Land application of sewage sludge incinerator ash for phosphorus recovery: A review

Persephone Ma, Carl Rosen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Phosphorus (P) is essential for all living things and an integral part of food production. However, significant amounts of P are functionally lost when wastewater byproducts, such as biosolids or sewage sludge incinerator ash (SSA), are not beneficially reused. Around 20% of sewage sludge produced in the US is incinerated and nearly 25% of sewage sludge is incinerated in European Union member countries. SSA contains significant amounts of P (up to 14% total P) and other beneficial elements but is typically sent to landfills for disposal. However, SSA has also been explored as one method of capturing and redirecting P back into the food system. Research investigating SSA characterization, P availability, and contaminant concentrations and behavior in soil is required to understand the effects of SSA land application on soil chemical properties and crop production. Several approaches for recovering P from SSA have been investigated that consider these factors. Ultimately, the opportunity for land application of SSA depends on the individual characteristics of a given SSA, ex. total P and contaminant concentrations, and the requirements and regulations of the region where it is produced and applied. In this review, we address the history of P recovery from SSA and discuss research regarding characterization, contaminants, P availability, and land application of SSA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number129609
JournalChemosphere
Volume274
Early online dateJan 23 2021
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - Jan 23 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank the Metropolitan Council in Minnesota , USA (award: 17I008 ) for their insight and financial support. We would also like to thank the Graduate School Office and the College of Food, Agriculture , and Natural Resource Science at the University of Minnesota for their support via graduate fellowships. We are grateful to Amy Hambrick of the US EPA, Robin Halperin of the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, Charley Hanson, April Sargent, and Michael Potash of RMI Recycles, and Matt Spidare of the Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati for their openness and engagement on incineration in the US, and Ned Beecher of North East Biosolids and Residuals Association for facilitating introductions. We would also like to thank Ludwig Hermann for providing AshDec® product for analysis and comparison and Rachel McDonald for her creative contribution.

Funding Information:
We would like to thank the Metropolitan Council in Minnesota, USA (award: 17I008) for their insight and financial support. We would also like to thank the Graduate School Office and the College of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resource Science at the University of Minnesota for their support via graduate fellowships. We are grateful to Amy Hambrick of the US EPA, Robin Halperin of the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, Charley Hanson, April Sargent, and Michael Potash of RMI Recycles, and Matt Spidare of the Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati for their openness and engagement on incineration in the US, and Ned Beecher of North East Biosolids and Residuals Association for facilitating introductions. We would also like to thank Ludwig Hermann for providing AshDec? product for analysis and comparison and Rachel McDonald for her creative contribution.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd

Copyright:
Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Agronomic performance
  • Biosolids
  • Phosphorus availability
  • Phosphorus recovery
  • Recycled fertilizer
  • Sewage sludge incinerator ash
  • Trace soil contaminants

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Review

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