Biosolids Master Plan

The Region of Waterloo (Region) Biosolids Master Plan was developed in 2003 and updated in 2011 to provide direction for biosolids management activities in the Region to the year 2031. The Biosolids Master Plan outlines a biosolids management strategy that is environmentally friendly, cost effective, and able to adapt to changing requirements and conditions over the next 20 years.

The Region periodically updates its Biosolids Master Plan to consider changes in growth in the Region, changes to the regulatory environment, climate change, and changes in Region policy direction.

A new update to the Biosolids Master Plan is planned to be undertaken by 2015.


A Class Environmental Assessment for the Biosolids Heat Drying Facility was recently under taken.  The project site with more details can be found here.

The current Biosolids Master Plan documents can be viewed by clicking the links below:


Biosolids Master Plan - FINAL REPORT - October 2011

Appendix A - Notice of Commencement

Appendix B - Project Team Terms of Reference

Appendix C - Project Steering Committee Terms of Reference

Appendix D - Stakeholder Advisory Committee

Appendix E - Notice of Public Information Centre #1 and Correspondence Received

Appendix F - Notice of Completion

Appendix G - Technical Memorandum #1

Appendix H - Technical Memorandum #2

Appendix I - Technical Memorandum #3

Appendix J - Technical Memorandum #4

Appendix K - Technical Memorandum #5

Appendix L - Technical Memorandum #6


The Region of Waterloo will develop a comprehensive biosolids strategy that embodies the Region's sustainability goals, principles and environmental focus; incorporates innovation, diversification and flexibility; builds on best practices; and protects the unique features and resources of the Region for the community now and in the future.

Background Information

Biosolids are generated through treatment of wastewater at the Region's thirteen WWTPs. At four of the Region's largest plants; (Kitchener, Preston, Galt and Waterloo), the sludge is anaerobically digested and the resulting biosolids are either applied to agricultural lands as fertilizer or dewatered and landfilled. At seven of the Region's plants; Hespeler, Ayr, Wellesley, St. Jacobs, Conestogo, Heidelberg and New Hamburg, the sludge is aerobically digested, and the biosolids are applied to agricultural land.

Historically, biosolids have been received at the Manitou Dr Transfer Station and stored at the Region's Biosolids Management Facility (BMF) located at the Kitchener WWTP whenever land application is not practical. Biosolids are also stored in smaller lagoons at the New Hamburg WWTP and Ayr WWTP.

Table showing current sludge digestion and biosolids management practices.

A number of changes to the Region's biosolids management strategy have been implemented since 2008 including the following:

  • Maximizing the use of the dewatering facility at the Galt WWTP to allow dewatering of biosolids generated at other Regional plants;
  • Accelerating implementation of dewatering facilities at the Waterloo WWTP and/or Kitchener WWTP through the use of mobile dewatering units until the new dewatering facilities are completed;
  • Continuing land application of liquid and dewatered biosolids when conditions permit, including the lease of fallow land;
  • Establishing a program to landfill dewatered biosolids that cannot be land applied; and,
  • Updating the Biosolids Management Master Plan to review and evaluate current and emerging technologies for long term biosolids management.



A study completed in 2008 recommended the following management practices for the aerobically digested sludge, which were adopted by the Region:

  • Continue to process Ayr biosolids at the Ayr WWTP;
  • In the short and long terms, haul sludge from Wellesley WWTP and St. Jacobs WWTP to the New Hamburg WWTP for digestion and liquid biosolids storage;
  • In the short term (until about 2012), haul Hespeler WWTP sludge to the Kitchener WWTP, and add to raw wastewater for co-thickening in the primary clarifiers;
  • For the long term, construct new sludge holding tanks at the Hespeler WWTP with odour control, and haul sludge to either Kitchener WWTP or Waterloo WWTP for digestion and dewatering.

Notice of Commencement

Notice of Completion

Stakeholders Committee

Public Information Centre #1 Information Package - June 2010

Public Information Centre #2 Information Package - May 2011

For questions on the Biosolids Master Plan update, please contact:

Region of Waterloo
General Contact
7th Floor,150 Frederick Street
Kitchener, ON N2G 4J3

Phone: 519-575-4400
TTY:  519-575-4608
Fax:  519-575-4452



Water Services
General Contact
7/F, 150 Frederick Street, Kitchener, Ontario N2G 4J3

Phone: 519-575-4400
TTY: 519-575-4608
Fax: 519-575-4452

E-Mail to Region of Waterloo Water Services
Link to Region of Waterloo Water Services Landing Page