Entrenchment of Sewage Sludge—a Disposal-Use Alternative

by L. J. Sikora, Biological Waste Management and Organic Resources Lab., Science and Education Administration, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Beltsville, Md.,
D. Colacicco, Economics, Statistics, and Cooperative Services, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Beltsville, Md.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1980, Vol. 50, Issue 4, Pg. 80-82

Document Type: Feature article


Entrenchment of sewage sludge is an alternative for the disposal and use of sewage sludge. Its advantages include high disposal rate, little odor problem, and no surface runoff. Two methods of sludge trenching are described, varying according to daily volume of sludge. Agricultural use of entrenched sludge is possible, depending upon the chemical composition of the sludge. Entrenched sludge stabilizes with time, with leachate from trenches generally containing nitrogen and chlorine but little metal. Environmental concerns, especially extent of ground water contamination, and typical costs of trenching systems are examined. Such trenching is recommended as a reliable and safe backup system to other disposal methods.

Subject Headings: Sewage | Sludge | Groundwater pollution | Odors | Runoff | Agricultural wastes | Leachates | Trenches

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