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Study: Low levels of pollutants found in sludge

A new study by the Europeans Commission Joint Research Centre (JRC) looking into potential compounds to amend the directive on Sewage Sludge has found that there none pose a significant risk. The original directive dates back to 1986 and is largely considered to be entirely outdated with only 7 heavy metals (cadmium, copper, nickel, lead, zinc, mercury and chromium) having set limits. However the study, which aimed to establish an approach to identify and prioritise compounds being considered for the directive rewrite, has concluded that there is no need to change the directive. The study took 63 samples from 15 member states during 2011 that were then tested for the presence of 22 chemical elements and 92 organic compounds. The results showed that all 114 substances had levels too low to create a measurable risk. The study has come into criticisms due to its disregard for pharmaceuticals (such as diclofenac which ranged from 1.3 to 429 nanograms per gram of sludge) READ MORE

Issue 22