Global Biosolids Market

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Global Biosolids Market: Industry Analysis (2017 – 2020), Growth Trends and Market Forecast (2021 – 2025)

Biosolids: An Effective Out-of-Waste Material

It is estimated that around 80% (90% in developing countries) of the wastewater, worldwide, is released into the environment untreated. Wastewater sewage contains nutrients that can be used for agriculture purpose. As the resources around the world become scarce and expensive, it is important to convert wastewater into a beneficial asset. Biosolids are organic materials derived from the wastewater treatment of domestic and industrial sewage sludge.Biosolids, have gathered a significant movement as an alternative to dispose of digested municipal sludge.

It is estimated that more than 35 million tons of biosolids were produced around the globe in the year 2018. Europe alone accounted for more than one-fourth of the global production in 2018. European Commission and European Governments have supported biosolids asbest environmental solution for waste disposal. U.S., the largest producer in North America consumes most of the biosolids for land application. Companies in the U.S such as Mannco are focused on developing new technologies to produce low cost, energy efficient and exceptional quality (EQ) biosolids. China is likely to surpass North America in the coming years. China has invested heavily in wastewater treatment technologies in the recent past and strategic plans to increase the investment in environmental protection, biosolids certainly fits the bill for waste disposal.

Class A Bioplastics to Gain Immense Popularity

Based upon regulations, biosolids can be classified as Class A and Class B. Class A biosolids are free of pathogens and can be used in applications where public contact is likely. Class A meets the standards set by governing bodies such as U.S. EPA. On the other hand, Class B has low level of pathogens and is used in farms or land reclamation applications. However, due to bad odor, high vector attraction and pathogens there is significant shift of customers from Class B to Class A. Furthermore, Class B also attracts a lot of attention from regulatory authorities and cannot be applied in home lawns and gardens.

In terms of consumption, agriculture accounted for more than 50% of the market in 2018. For their high nutrition value, containing micro and macro nutrients, major usage of Biosolids in agriculture are as: a fertilizer, soil replacement product or a soil conditioner. Other key applications of biosolids include landfilling, heat generation, landscaping, and construction materials wherein it can be used as a land reclamation material or as a fuel source.

Government Backing for Biosolids Program

Foremost factor behind the rising consumption of biosolids is increasing pressure from regulatory bodies to phase out landfilling, stringent regulations on wastewater, sewage treatment and waste disposal. European Union and U.S. government are closely scrutinizing landfill and incineration aspects and imposition of strict laws. Biosolids in land application offers greenhouse gas benefits with carbon recycling and nourishing vegetation for further CO2 capture.

Biosolids have the ability to eliminate need for commercial fertilizers. There is a growing trend towards the use of biosolids in amenity horticulture (floriculture, greenhouse container, arboriculture, etc.). Biosolids offers various benefits such as reducing the dependency on synthetic fertilizers, reduce greenhouse emissions, improve water holding capacity and improve soil structure. Biosolids is also expected to play an important role in treatment and reclamation of former mining sites. Biosolids can upgrade the mine land and assists in vegetation establishment.

Malodor Creating a Negative Perception among Consumers

In the past few years, malodor from biosolids has become a bothersome aspect in customer perception. Organizations such as EPA are emphasizing on need to get better support from the public to make these biosolids programs a successful model. Effectively and safely managing biosolids is also a major challenge for the community as they are produced in large quantities.

Transportation (and the cost of moving) of disposal water/waste, difficulties in raising capital for the new plants are few factors likely to restrict the market growth.

Competitors to Seek Partnerships to Stay Ahead

Companies operating in the biosolids market such as Cleanway, SUEZ and Thames Water have integrated business operations. These companies offer end-to-end business solutions and hold strong positions in their respective regions. Companies are also coming up new strategies to form a partnership with fertilizer companies to develop new application avenues. In 2019, Aries Clean Energy received approvals for its world’s first large scale biosolids gasification plant. This will convert waste into renewable energy and biochar. With the need of cost competitive technologies and innovation, many companies expected to come up with disruptive technologies over the next few years to come.

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