Biosolids Land Application Program

Program Background

The City of Steinbach takes its water stewardship role seriously. In 2018, the city is applying for a long-term land application license that allows for the dispersal of biosolids as required. Until now, a license request was submitted for every one time application. This process required the city to engage and pay for professional services (e.g. consulting engineers and agrologists), as well as complete a lengthy application process for every submission. A long-term license will allow the city to continue its operations, without the need for individual application requests, improving efficiency and decreasing associated costs.

The city’s operations will not be changing, only the Environment Act License under which it operates.

Regardless of the license, the City of Steinbach continues to work with and adhere to all guidelines set out by Manitoba Sustainable Development and complies with all applicable Acts and Regulations, including the Manitoba Water Protection Act, the Manitoba Environment Act and the Nutrient Management Regulation.


What are Biosolids?
Biosolids, or sewage sludge, are the nutrient-rich organic materials resulting from treatment of sewage in a wastewater treatment facility. 


What is Biosolids Land Application?
The process of applying biosolids to farmland, supplying nutrients and improved soil quality.


How else can Biosolids be disposed of?
There are three ways to dispose of biosolids - incineration, landfills, and land application. The City’s Wastewater program utilizes the land application process to reuse and recycle nutrients in the biosolids. Other disposal options do not recover nutrients or provide reuse benefits. 


What are the benefits of Biosolids Land Application?
This process provides many agricultural benefits including increased nutrients for local farmland, improved soil structure, drainage and erosion protection, reduction of fertilizer costs and improved crop yields. This process also benefits the environment by reducing greenhouse gases and eliminating disposal of biosolids into landfills.


What has Steinbach done in the past?
The City of Steinbach last completed a bisolids land application in 2015 and prior to that in 2002. 


Where could Biosolids be land applied?
Biosolids could only be applied to agricultural land that is suitable based on established criteria by Manitoba Sustainable Development and cooperating farm producers’ approval. Suitable agricultural land criteria are based on soil characteristics, farm management practices, and sensitive features. The City of Steinbach will work with local farm producers and Manitoba Sustainable Development to identify suitable local agricultural land and develop a comprehensive land application plan for biosolids land application.


Are Biosolids Safe?
Biosolids land application is a safe, sustainable, provincially regulated strategy for biosolids management widely used in Canada and all over the world.


How often will Biosolids Land Application take place?
The City of Steinbach applies biosolids as warranted by the capacity of the City’s wastewater treatment facility. As the City continues to grow, biosolids application requirements may also increase. The land application license that the City is applying for in 2018 takes into account the City’s expected growth as well as wastewater treatment facility management requirements and plans accordingly.  


I’m a Farm Producer in the Steinbach area, how can I learn about participating in this program?
The City of Steinbach encourages any agricultural producers interested in participating in the program to contact the City by calling 204-346-6214 or completing the form below. We are happy to provide further details about the program and answer any questions you may have.


How can I learn more?
To learn more about the City of Steinbach’s Biosolids Land Application Program, complete and submit the below form.   


Contact the City about the Biosolids Land Application Program

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