AG Watch

LA sewage headed to Kings County by the end of the year

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Crop land near Kettleman City may soon be producing crops with the help of what's being flushed down millions of toilets in LA.

The sanitation districts of Los Angeles County are building this massive facility. The plan is to truck treated human waste from LA bring it here mix it with plant material and wood chips, compost it and apply it to up to 30 thousand acres of farm land.

Kings County Supervisor Richard Valle, who represents the area believes the County's strict ordinances will assure it's safe.

"The public health and safety of Kettleman City residents has been a priority since day one," said Supervisor Richard Valle. "I understand the Kings County ordinance protects environment, water quality and public health."

Kings County signed off on the plan several years ago with assurances from the state the treated waste would be safe.

LA County Sanitation Engineer Ajay Malik tells Action News there's nothing to worry about.

Malik said, "There's strict regulation in terms of certain toxic compounds, and you cannot exceed certain levels of toxic compounds and we certainly will be well below those standards."

But using treated sewage on crops is controversial. Merced County stopped allowing Bay Area waste from being used on its farmland 20 years ago. Kern County is in a court battle trying to stop human waste from being spread on its land.

But the debate over the stuff being used in Kings County appears to have stopped.

Westlake farms plans to use the compost but only on nonfood crops like cotton. The first shipment is expected to arrive in October.

(Copyright ©2014 KFSN-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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Tags:
ag report, kettleman city, kings county, hanford, lemoore, ag watch, gene haagenson
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