Are there any agricultural uses for carbon black sediment?

Asked October 27, 2015, 7:32 PM EDT

I have a client in Texas who has collected rainwater runoff from a carbon black manufacturing plant in storage ponds. Over 40+ years, the ponds have filled with potentially thousands of yards of carbon black sediment. The sediment likely contains some organic soil material but is predominantly the extremely fine carbon black material. The client needs to reclaim storage volume in their ponds, and has a few options for what to do with the material, all of which are expensive.

I am interested in knowing if the material has an agricultural purpose as a compost or organic fertilizer component. The sediment has provided a good substrate for growth of reeds, so I know plants aren't turned away by the material. I'd assume the nutrient composition is relatively low, but the weeds grow like crazy on the ponds. Let's hear your ideas!

Lancaster County Nebraska agriculture soil fertility horticulture

1 Response

I am not sure if it has any nutritive value or not, but from what you have written, it might. The only way to know for sure is to send a sample off to a soil testing lab for an analysis. The lab at Texas A&M University it s good one or the lab at the Nobel Foundation in Ardmore, Oklahoma.