Assessing biosolid treatment processes on pollutant environmental fate and plant uptake following land application.

EPA Grant Number: R840252
Title: Assessing biosolid treatment processes on pollutant environmental fate and plant uptake following land application.
Investigators: Li, Hui , Carignan, Courtney , Zhang, Wei , Ippolito, James , Huang, Qingguo , Norton, John
Institution: Michigan State University , Colorado State University , University of Georgia Research Foundation , Great Lake Water Authority
EPA Project Officer: Packard, Benjamin H
Project Period: September 1, 2021 through August 31, 2024
Project Amount: $1,498,000
RFA: National Priorities: Evaluation of Pollutants in Biosolids (2021) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Water , Water Treatment , Water Quality

Objective:

The project aims to (1) fill the knowledge gaps on the occurrence, fate, transport, and plant uptake of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) and per-polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) at the nexus of biosolids, soil, water, and crops via performing systematically designed laboratory and field experiments; (2) integrate the data to develop quantitative models for evaluating human exposure through biosolids application pathway; and (3) disseminate the research results through community engagement and extension activities.

Approach:

The objectives will be achieved through the tasks of: (1) surveillance of impacts of biosolids treatment processes on PPCPs and PFASs concentration and leachability, (2) environmental fate and transport of PPCPs and PFASs in soils amended with biosolids, (3) accumulation of PPCPs and PFASs in agricultural crops from biosolids-amended soils and relation with their presence in soil pore water, (4) field experiments to measure the accumulation of PPCPs and PFASs in crops from biosolids land application, (5) modeling human exposure to PPCPs and PFASs through biosolids application pathway, and (6) community engagement and communication through extension activities.

Expected Results:

Results of this project will produce new scientific data and improve our knowledge on occurrence, fate, transport, plant uptake, and human exposure to PPCPs and PFASs from land-applied biosolids. Analytical methods to be developed could serve as the trials for EPA methods to analyze PPCPs and PFASs in biosolids and plants. Results will be organized into reports and peer-reviewed publications that will be widely disseminated through websites, project reports, journal articles, workshop/conference presentations, extension bulletins and outreach materials. User-friendly models will be developed to evaluate occurrence, fate, transport, and plant uptake of PPCPs and PFASs released from biosolids. A field guide summarizing risk factors contributing to human exposure to PPCPs and PFASs from biosolids application pathway will be created to identify high-, medium-, and low-risk scenarios.

Supplemental Keywords:

Persistent Organic Pollutants, Water, Soil, Plant, Bioavailability, Exposure Assessment, Sorption, Transformation, Bioconcentration Factor, Food Safety, Water Pollution, Risk Assessment, Soil Amendment, Public Policy, Environmental Chemistry, Agriculture, Soil Quality, Wastewater Treatment.