More than eight million tons of sludge — the muddied, dry substance left behind after sewage is treated — is produced in the U.S. each year. No one knows exactly how harmful sludge may be, but some activists say it’s toxic. We examine how sludge is treated and regulated.


  • Robert Hale Professor of Marine Science in the Department of Environmental and Aquatic Animal Health at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary.
  • Laura Orlando Resource Institute for Low Entropy Systems (RILES)
  • Chris Peot Manager of Biosolids, Blue Plains Advanced Waste Water Treatment Plant, DC Water and Sewer Authority

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