Catherine Price

Catherine Price is a contributing editor at Popular Science whose work has appeared in the New York Times, The Best American Science Writing and Slate, among many other publications. The research for this article was funded through a Middlebury Fellowship in Environmental Reporting.

Crap happens: A Grist special report on how we dispose of our poop

For some eco-pioneers, solving the sludge problem means getting their hands dirty

Part 3 of Grist’s special series on poop. Laura Allen, a 33-year-old teacher from Oakland, California, has a famous toilet. To be honest, it’s actually a box, covered in decorative ceramic tiles, sitting on the cement floor of her bathroom …

Crap happens: A Grist special report on how we dispose of our poop

Businesses struggle to profit from sewage sludge

Part 2 of Grist’s special series on poop. “We’re trying to get the pieces bigger — ideally the size of pencil erasers,” said John “Rus” Miller, handing me a plastic packet of a brown, dry, crumbly material with the texture …

Crap happens: A Grist special report on how we dispose of our poop

Sludge, farmer’s friend or toxic slime?

Should what we put down our sewers ultimately wind up back on our plates?Marc Samsom via Flickr Urine, feces, menstrual blood, hair, fingernails, vomit, dead skin cells. Industrial chemicals, pharmaceuticals, soaps, shampoos, solvents, pesticides, household cleansers, hospital waste. Sewage sludge, …

Crap happens: A Grist special report on how we dispose of our poop

Regulating biosolids

Biosolids are regulated under what’s known colloquially (to those who speak colloquially about sewage) as the 503 Sludge Rule, which came into effect in 1993. Technically titled “40 CFR 503 — Standards for the Use and Disposal of Sewage Sludge,” …