Association News

New ASTM Subcommittee focuses on organic waste discharge.

Press Release Summary:

Mar 20, 2013 - Subcommittee D34.02 has been formed to develop proposed standards to analyze organic compounds discharged into sanitary sewers. Proposed standards developed by this subcommittee will deal with organic compounds that cause damage to treatment plants and whether such compounds will harm aquatic species or animals that feed on aquatic species. End results will help producers plan and develop products for those concerned with certain organic compounds in recycled waste products.

ASTM International - West Conshohocken, PA

Original Press Release

ASTM International Waste Management Committee Forms New Subcommittee on Organic Wastes Discharge

Press release date: Mar 15, 2013

W. CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa.—A new ASTM subcommittee will develop proposed standards to analyze organic compounds discharged into sanitary sewers. Subcommittee D34.02 on Discharge of Organic Wastes into Sanitary Sewers is part of ASTM International Committee D34 on Waste Management.

“Considering the need for low detection limits and measurements that would assure all of the compounds of interest have been measured, sanitary sewers offer a challenge,” says John Burnett, laboratory supervisor, Engineering and Regulation Division, Bureau of Utilities, Department of Public Works of Baltimore County, Md. Burnett notes that there is a high content of organic solids in sewers and it is often possible that many of the compounds of interest may be strongly associated with those solids and not be measured accurately.

“There are currently no methods available for analysis of many specific organic compounds that have been discharged into sanitary sewers,” says Burnett.  “As a result, it is not possible to judge the impact on the environment or the treatment plant.”

Proposed standards developed by the subcommittee will deal with organic compounds that cause damage to treatment plants and whether such compounds will harm aquatic species or animals that feed on aquatic species.

“Development of standards by D34.02 will provide defensible data for calculating limits on the quantity of compounds that can be introduced into the sewer,” says Burnett. “This, in turn, would assist in the establishment of guidelines for the application of municipal sludge to farmland for the production of organic foods. It would help producers plan and develop products for those who may have concerns over the presence of certain organic compounds in recycled waste products.”

All interested parties, particularly chemists and individuals with knowledge of industrial processes, are welcome to join in the standards developing activities of D34.02. ASTM International welcomes participation in the development of its standards. For more information on becoming an ASTM member, visit www.astm.org/JOIN.

ASTM International is one of the largest international standards development and delivery systems in the world. ASTM International meets the World Trade Organization (WTO) principles for the development of international standards: coherence, consensus, development dimension, effectiveness, impartiality, openness, relevance and transparency. ASTM standards are accepted and used in research and development, product testing, quality systems and commercial transactions.

For more news in this sector, visit www.astm.org/sn-environmental or follow us on Twitter @ASTMEnvironment.

ASTM Committee D34 Next Meeting: April 2-3, 2013, EPA Headquarters, Las Vegas, Nev.

Technical Contact: John E. Burnett, Department of Public Works of Baltimore County, Columbia, Md., Phone: 410-887-5488; jeburnett@baltimorecountymd

ASTM Staff Contact: Alyson Fick, Phone: 610-832-9710; afick@astm.org
ASTM PR Contact: Barbara Schindler, Phone: 610-832-9603; bschindl@astm.org