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The Problem

About Biosolids

The biosolids problem and how we solve it.

An age-old problem that
has yet to be solved,
until now.

Biosolids Impact:

Community Health

Pathogen & Vectors

GHG Emissions

Soil Contamination

Landfill Odors

Soil Health

Nutrient Runoff

Aquatic Dead Zones

The Biosolids Problem is Getting Worse

  • Biosolids disposal is a major source of GHG emissions and a material cost to New Yorkers. 

  • The biosolids disposal problem in NY is getting worse with no inexpensive solution in sight. 

  • We create a “beneficial use” byproduct that destroys PFAS and other contaminants. 

  • We solve a costly problem that local governments have with biosolids disposal.

  • Biosolids recycling options are becoming constrained by their contaminants.

Waste Not: How We Solve the Biosolids Problem

Click on an item to view an in-depth explanation.

Environmentally friendliest biosolids disposal solution.
  • Destroys PFAS, VOCs, microplastics, pathogens, and other contaminants in biosolids. 
  • Achieves lowest emissions of any biosolids disposal method that remediates PFAS.  
  • Reduces GHG emissions from biosolids disposal and chemical fertilizer manufacturing.
  • Sequesters beneficial carbon in soil where it is needed. 
Low emissions and air treatment are vital to our success.

Ensuring our air emissions are safe, our GHG emissions are low, and our odors are impeccably managed are the primary factors that will determine our success with public utilities.

SBS employs benchmark air treatment to protect human health and our reputation. 

  • Building Design – Contains fugitive odor from biosolids receiving and processing.
  • Pyrolysis – Separates PFAS and contaminants from biosolids. 
  • Thermal Oxidation – Staged combustion reduces NOx and removes PFAS and contaminants.
  • High-efficiency Dry Cyclones – Recover most of the dried material. 
  • Wet Venturi Scrubber – Removes the remaining fine particles.  
  • Hydrated Lime Scrubber – Removes sulfur dioxide (SO₂) and neutralize odor compounds.
  • Ammonia Scrubber – Removes ammonia (NH₄) odors.
  • Dual-stage Bio-scrubbers – Polishes odors and further removesSO₂.
Remediates PFAS and contaminants.

Biosolids have traces of many contaminants, including PFAS, that must be remediated.

  • Pharmaceutical products, micro-plastics, hormones, cleaners, oils, fats, greases, VOCs and many other contaminants that make their way into sewage. 
  • These contaminants make it through the drying stage of our competitors and are present in all dried biosolids products that are currently sold and distributed nation-wide (i.e., Milorganite).  
  • In the SBS process, these contaminants are separated from the solids in the pyrolysis stage.
  • Once in a gaseous form these contaminants are quickly destroyed by thermal oxidation. 

Pyrolysis is a decontamination technology that works extremely well with biosolids.

  • Dried biosolids are heated in an oxygen-free environment at over 1,100°F for up to 30 minutes which causes even the toughest contaminants to separate and become part of the syngas.  
  • Syngas is kept hot for the several seconds of its existence to ensure molecules don’t start reconnecting and forming air emissions.
  • PFAS compounds are liberated from solids into a volatile gas state where they are destroyed by thermal oxidation (2,300°F).  
  • Syngas is thermally oxidized in stages to achieve the lowest NOx emissions possible.

Pyrolysis has been similarly used to remediate soil contaminants for decades, albeit without the advanced air treatment solution that we employ.

Our technology aligns with the latest US EPA guidance for PFAS destruction and disposal.

The USEPA Interim Guidance released April 8, 2024 (https://www.epa.gov/pfas/interim-guidance-destroying-and-disposing-certain-pfas-and-pfas-containing-materials-are-not) highlights the need for new, state-of-the-art biosolids management facilities that are designed from the onset with PFAS destruction in mind.  The Saratoga Biochar represents the first facility of its kind that takes a holistic approach to PFAS separation and remediation. The EPA guidance provided validation of our process design parameters for using pyrolysis to separate PFAS compounds at 1,100°F, which is the same temperature we target as a material temperature to separate PFAS compounds using pyrolysis, as well as the destruction of PFAS compounds at a minimum temperature of 2,012°F via thermal oxidation, which is below the 2,300°F temperature we target in our advanced, multi-stage thermal oxidation process. 

If your question is not answered, don’t hesitate to contact us.