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EPA MAKES FINAL DECISION ON DIOXIN IN SEWAGE SLUDGE

Release Date: 12/21/2001
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FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, DECEMBER 21, 2001

EPA MAKES FINAL DECISION ON DIOXIN IN SEWAGE SLUDGE

Cathy Milbourn 202-564-7824 / milbourn.cathy@epa.gov


Under a Dec.15 deadline, EPA made a final decision not to regulate dioxin in sewage sludge that is incinerated or placed in sludge landfills or containment ponds. EPA based its decision on an evaluation of the risk of exposure for people most likely to be exposed to dioxin from these sources. EPA concluded that existing regulations for incinerators, landfills or containment ponds adequately protect human health and the environment by limiting exposure to pollutants, including dioxins. The agency continues to discus the final schedule for issuing a separate decision for dioxin in sewage sludge that is land applied. Dioxins are a group of highly toxic persistent compounds which are a byproduct of certain combustion and chemical manufacturing processes. Sewage sludge is the byproduct of the treatment processes which purify wastewater before it is released into local waterways. For more information about this decision, visit: http://www.epa.gov/waterscience/biosolids/ . For more information on dioxins, visit: http://www.epa.gov/opptintr/pbt/dioxins.htm .

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