Southland Biosolids Continue to be Land Applied in Kern County

On Monday, August 13, 2007 U.S. District Court Judge Gary Allen Feess released his final ruling nullifying Measure E. Kern County’s voter-approved Measure E suspends use of imported treated biosolids as fertilizer on unincorporated land within Kern County. This issue has been litigated for roughly a decade.

The Commerce Clause of the Federal Constitution and the California Integrated Waste Management Act are cited as the legal basis for the decision. Kern County permits management of its biosolids in incorporated areas. Measure E, did not allow similar management activities in unincorporated areas this was interpreted as a violation of the Commerce Clause. In addition, the Waste Management Act encourages recycling practices such as the use of treated biosolids as a soil amendment. County supervisors will decide soon whether to appeal Feess’ ruling.

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