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Characterizing and Determining Beneficial Use of Paper Production Residuals that Otherwise Become Waste

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Abstract

Background: Paper mill residuals differ depending on the process and associated chemicals needed to create the paper for the intended use. Finch Paper, LLC operates a paper mill in Glens Falls, New York. Finch starts with logs and produces high quality printing paper. They use the ammonium bisulfite pulping process to produce pulp from wood chips. The wastewater treatment system treats about 16 to 20 million gallons of wastewater a day. This process generates around 190 cubic yards of Waste Water Treatment Residual (WWTR) per day. Most chemical pulp mills in the United States use the Kraft process to make pulp. That process uses sodium hydroxide and sodium sulfide to make pulp from chips. As a result, Kraft WWTR contains a fair amount of sodium and sulfur. Finch’s process gives off a fair amount of nitrogen and sulfur. This indicates that the WWTR could have value as a fertilizer or as a valuable ingredient in compost.

In an effort to recycle more organic materials, Finch Paper, LLC funded a two-year research project cooperatively with Cornell Waste Management Institute (CWMI), Cornell Department of Crop and Soil Sciences (CSS) with guidance from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (NYSDAM). The purpose of this research was to find potential beneficial uses for their WWTR. Three of the four potential beneficial uses investigated have been implemented.

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Finch Paper, LLC

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2014

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Cornell Waste Management Institute

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benefical uses of paper mill residuals; composting

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