Choctaw outlaws use of solid human waste as fertilizer
During last week’s regular City Council meeting Choctaw officials voted unanimously to amend the code of ordinances, prohibiting the spreading of solid human waste within city limits.
Ordinance No. 796-2019 was approved at the July 2 meeting with a vote of support from the entire council.
The ordinance declares the spreading of solid waste, from a wastewater treatment plant, a prohibited nuisance.
City officials say this ordinance is not intended to regulate personal compost or aerobic septic systems, but is instead meant to prevent Choctaw residents from using solid human waste, provided by treatment plants in other cities, as fertilizer.
According to city officials, residents have been receiving fertilizer in the form of solid human waste from the waste water treatment facilities of Oklahoma City.
Officials say the use of biosolids/sludge as fertilizer on property within the Choctaw city limits has been on the rise.
Everything that goes down Oklahoma City sewer pipes arrives at a wastewater treatment plant. It’s swirled, settled and separated, then the cleaned water is discharged leaving behind sludge.
For several decades that material has been spread on agricultural property and bottom land around the North Canadian River throughout eastern Oklahoma County.
Residents from Ward 1 were in attendance to voice their concerns that led to the ordinance, which were primarily the continued smell and insect problems brought to the area by the spreading of human waste as fertilizer.
“I’ve visited with several of those people who live out there, and I don’t know how they do it,” said Mayor Randy Ross. “The smell is unbearable, and lasts about a month after they do it.”
To the relief of those frustrated Ward 1 residents in attendance, the ordinance was supported by all six councilmembers and the mayor.
However, residents in the northern most areas of Choctaw may not receive total relief due to some nearby neighbors residing outside the city limits.
“There is a sod farm north of this area, but it’s in Jones so it won’t be effected,” said Ward 1 Councilman Chad Williams. “However, this should prevent the sod farm in Choctaw and any others around there that may have been participating.”
City officials say the fertilization practice has a reach well beyond property lines.
“The smell and flies from people doing this on NE 50th effects people from NE 36th up to 63rd,” said Ross.
An emergency clause was unanimously passed, stating the change was for the preservation of the public health, peace and safety, and therefore put the law change into effect immediately.
It is now unlawful for anyone to spread or allow the spreading of solid waste from a wastewater treatment plant on any property in the City of Choctaw.
Thank God & the mayor. We can now enjoy why we moved to the country,set outside & breath fresh air,quiet,weddings,family reunions & cook outs,all without being spoiled! No more visits to the doctor with lung infections???? . Thank you so much!