Relating PFAS Leaching from Sewage Sludge and Biosolids to Water and Sludge Quality

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This webcast is presented in partnership with The Water Research Foundation.

Poly- and perfluoroalkyl acids (PFASs) are a diverse set of anionic, cationic, and zwitterionic synthetic organofluorine surfactants widely used in a variety of industrial and consumer applications for over 50 years (e.g., fabrics, paper goods, cookware). They are now found throughout the world in a variety of biological and environmental matrices, including in wastewater and sewage-derived sludges. PFASs sorption to sewage sludge and biosolids has been observed in the lab, and leaching from the sludges and biosolids has been inferred in agricultural fields.

This webcast will provide an overview of the first year of a three-year collaborative Water Research Foundation and National Science Foundation project linking PFASs leaching from sewage-derived solids to solid characteristics and water quality parameters. In this first year, PFAS sorption has been evaluated to understand how PFAS concentration and water quality affect PFAS distribution coefficients. The longer-term project goals will focus on the premise that organic matter characteristics can significantly affect PFASs leaching.

Dr. Erica McKenzie of Temple University will discuss the ongoing assessment of secondary sludge and biosolids characteristics that influence PFASs sorption capacity, and the effects of operational and solids management decisions on PFASs fate and transport. She will provide some early recommendations for wastewater treatment plant operators and biosolids users to minimize contamination from PFAS.

Speakers:

  • Erica McKenzie, Temple University
  • Lola Olabode, WRF

There will be 1.0 Professional Development Hours (PDHs) offered for this webcast. Please check with your state accreditation agency to determine if you qualify.