Synagro Faces Lawsuit from Texas Farmers Over Biosolids Practices

Farmers sue major waste company Synagro over biosolids harming crops, soil; company defends practices as safe and compliant.

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Synagro Faces Lawsuit from Texas Farmers Over Biosolids Practices

Synagro Faces Lawsuit from Texas Farmers Over Biosolids Practices

Synagro, a major waste management company, is defending its biosolids practices amidst a lawsuit filed by a group of Texas farmers. The farmers allege that Synagro's application of treated sewage sludge, known as biosolids, on agricultural land has caused harm to their crops and soil. Synagro maintains that its practices are safe and comply with all regulations.

The lawsuit, filed in a Texas state court, claims that Synagro's biosolids contain heavy metals and other contaminants that have damaged crops and rendered some farmland unusable. The farmers are seeking compensation for their losses and an injunction to halt Synagro's biosolids application in the affected areas. They argue that Synagro failed to properly test and monitor the biosolids for potential hazards.

In response, Synagro asserts that its biosolids meet all federal and state standards for land application. The company states that biosolids are a safe and effective fertilizer that provide nutrients to the soil and help reduce reliance on synthetic fertilizers. Synagro points to numerous studies and regulatory oversight that support the safety of biosolids when applied according to guidelines.

"We stand behind the quality and safety of our biosolids program," said a Synagro spokesperson. "We work closely with regulators and follow all necessary testing and application protocols. These allegations are without merit, and we will vigorously defend our practices in court."

Why this matters: The outcome of this lawsuit could have implications for the use of biosolids in agriculture nationwide. Biosolids are a widely used soil amendment, but concerns persist about potential contamination and long-term effects on soil health.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, which regulates biosolids in the state, has not commented on the specific allegations but says it will monitor the situation. The agency notes that biosolids are subject to strict testing and application requirements to protect public health and the environment. As the lawsuit proceeds, it will likely focus attention on the current discussion about the advantages and disadvantages of biosolids in modern farming practices.

Key Takeaways

  • Synagro, a waste management firm, defends its biosolids practices amid Texas farmer lawsuit.
  • Farmers allege Synagro's biosolids contain contaminants that damaged crops and farmland.
  • Synagro claims its biosolids meet regulations and are a safe, effective fertilizer.
  • Lawsuit outcome could impact biosolids use in agriculture nationwide.
  • Regulators monitor situation, as lawsuit focuses on biosolids' advantages and disadvantages.