Fabricated Soil Development

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City of Abbotsford

The Joint Abbotsford Mission Environmental System (J.A.M.E.S.) wastewater treatment facility selected the fabrication of a growing media as a cost-effective, environmentally conscious and local opportunity to diversify their biosolids management program. SYLVIS was retained to undertake applied research in the determination and development of a biosolids soil product.

Different feedstock ingredients were identified and a series of optimum mix ratios were established using a computer model. Over twenty different formulations were mixed on site and assessed for regulatory compliance and product quality. The growing media were initially evaluated for physical and aesthetic characteristics, eliminating blends that were too sticky, heavy or lighter in colour. Analyses were completed on the short-listed growing media.

The optimal feedstock ingredients, mix ratios and final soil product was identified based upon: availability and cost of different feedstock materials; aesthetic soil quality characteristics including colour, texture and odour; physical and fertility parameters; and, regulatory compliance.

Through a tiered evaluation approach SYLVIS identified an optimal soil that meets landscape standards and regulatory requirements. SYLVIS also performed independent third-party quality audits to ensure optimal product quality and provided feedback to the client for continuous improvement.

This applied research completed by SYLVIS provided an operational beneficial biosolids management opportunity for the City of Abbotsford.