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Williamson County (Texas) landowner nixes application to bring sewage sludge to Granger farm


By Benjamin Wermund AMERICAN-STATESMAN STAFF

Updated: 11:42 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Published: 8:43 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Treated sewage sludge will not be dumped on a northeastern Williamson County farm as nearby residents had feared after the landowner canned an agreement that would have brought human-made leftovers from a nearby wastewater treatment facility to his pastures.

Synagro planned to deliver sludge — also known as biosolids — from a sewage treatment plant in Waller County, but the Houston-based company pulled its permit application this week. The move came after landowner Jim Schwertner sent a letter last week notifying the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, the state's environmental agency, that he was no longer interested in using the sludge on his farm.

Lisa Wheeler, a spokeswoman for the environmental agency, said the agency has not received Synagro's notice yet.

Residents around Schwertner's farm, just east of Granger, had spoken out against the potential dumping of the sludge on the piece of farmland, saying they were worried it could contaminate their well water and the air around the farm.

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