[Fwd: N&O article on hog farm regs (fwd)]

Lawrence F. London, Jr. london at metalab.unc.edu
Sun Oct 31 21:55:47 EST 1999

On Fri, 15 Oct 1999, Russ Bulluck wrote:

> Carolina, The contract farmer doesn't own the pigs, or the building, but
> he does own the waste produced by the animals, and is responsible for it's
> disposal).
> Prior to the Floyd disaster, there was a two year moratorium on new hog
> farms (over a certain size), and the state was evaluating the efficacy of
> different waste handling systems (instead of lagoons).
> The swine manure that I used for my experiments came from a facility that
> was under evaluation.  It was basically a waste-water treatment facility
> that screened out the solids, and placed the water through primary and
> secondary treatment before reusing the water to wash out the houses, and
> begin the process again.


I am interested in possibilities for composting and recycling 
livestock waste. North Carolina farmers could really make good use of this
for broad acre cropping as well for small, vegetable and fruit operations.
There have been several threads on alternative waste treatment and
recycling in the permaculture newsgroup, alt.permaculture. I am copying a
portion of a recent thread here for you. BTW, maybe you know Halford House
at NCSU, who works on alternative waste treatment systems R&D - he has an
experimental installation at a business in Chapel Hill, on Mt Carmel Rd. -
his group's website (maybe part of the Sea Grant Program at NCSU?) is:
Water Recycling
(His links section is well worth seeing).

From: lflondon at mindspring.com (Lawrence F. London, Jr.)
Newsgroups: alt.permaculture
Subject: Re: composting toilets
Date: Mon, 01 Nov 1999 02:05:33 GMT
Organization: InterGarden

On Sun, 31 Oct 1999 22:51:21 -0000, "Heather" <hkthomas at tinet.ie>
>Lawrence F. London, Jr. wrote in message ...
>>Regarding reed bed wastewater treatment systems:
>>1) are they used exclusively for treating grey water,

>No, grey and black water from domestic systems. Also agricultural waste,
>slurry and residue from dairying and food processing. They've also been
>used to treat heavily polluted toxic waste, John Todds' - Living Machines
>are worth a look  in this respect.

I have an article in Country Journal magazine, written years ago, that
describes several of his installations, pics included. So I am
familiar with some of his work from this limited resource.

>The RBTS we design must include a septic tank. Like you say this

Aha, that explains all.

>digests the solids and presents the reed bed with a liquid to treat. No
>for the S/T to be above ground, pumps can be included. Once treated the
>effluent from the reed bed easily reaches 20/30 standard.

How difficult would it be to construct a John Todd-like system to
replace the septic tank in the system you describe? It would seem to
me that as his system included growing crops useful for other than
recycling nutrients and reducing or eliminating pathogenic
microorganism counts that it might be possible to put together
an integrated, modular system that inclduded a greenhouse 
for effective year-round waste processing and a reedbed system,
out-of-doors, for final water purification and recycling of
nutrients. The greenhouse could house above ground tanks
containing (as the CJ J. Todd article describes) a broad spectrum
of  aquatic life, including fish, snails, crayfish (maybe clams could
be used in an artificial "spillway/shallows"), and rooted and floating
plants. Growing convential crops would enlarge the range of 
plants and animals that could become part of the system. One idea,
commonly used in homebrew aquaculture systems, is to make floating
"barges" of plant litter on top of which soil and manure is placed and
crops planted thereon. I have an article in National Geographic 
on the people of Kashmir that describes this agricultural practice which
is commonly used by some of their farmers to grow produce for market. This
could also become another type of aquaponic system for recycling and
cropping. A windmill-driven slurry pump could pull semi-digested sludge
off the bottoms of the tanks and distribute this over the growing surfaces
of the floating "cropping-barges" - this function would be initiated
manually by the system operator. Fish, clams, snails & crayfish could
be grown for stock for other similar systems elsewhere.
All output of the system could become fertilizer. A stretch of
suitable land could be irrigated with broken-down-solids slurry from
the bottoms of the tanks to fertilize stands of bamboo, willow or any
of a large number of suitable plants. Having external systems capable of
effectively absorbing nutrients to which some of the liquid/slurry/sludge 
could be diverted would offer a means to reduce the load on the
main treatment system - this would be handy if the system went down 
or threatened to go down for one reason or another.
Towards the end of the system some of the almost-purified water could be
diverted to another stretch of land to keep it moist enough for land-based
crayfish to survive and breed  (these are big crayfish that are often
found in pastures near streams where the land has a high water table; they
tunnel into the soil to find adequate moisture to sustain themselves and

>Re; composting toilets, we'll have a 'normal' flush loo in the house
>conected of course to a R/B. However for the past 3-4 years we've been
>using a twin vault compost toilet as mentioned in the added post. It is a
>brilliant! Low cost to build, no running costs. not too wierd for the
>visiting mothers!! can look really pretty. For more details try to find a
>copy of Fertile Waste published by The Alternative Technology Centre

I forwarded this info to the pc list. Thanks.

Do you know of any websites fo this info & design?
It might be worth someone(s) preparing a blueprint, working plans,
specs, materials list and construction details to scan and put online.
I'd be willing to help with this. I have scanner and drafting tools.

Lawrence F. London, Jr.  Venaura Farm
/intergarden /intergarden/orgfarm /ecolandtech
lflondon at mindspring.com  london at metalab.unc.edu

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