Results of a pilot project with hydraulic fracturing wastewater from Atlantic Industrial Services in Debert have been posted by the Department of Environment.
The results are available at www.novascotia.ca/nse/pollutionprevention/pubs.asp.
The pilot project, approved last April, permitted the transport of two million litres of treated wastewater from the Atlantic Industrial Services holding ponds for use as a coolant in the kiln at the Lafarge cement plant in Brookfield, where it was evaporated at 700 C.
Before being evaporated in the kiln, the wastewater had been treated for naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORMS) and put through reverse-osmosis.
The water was analyzed and it meets the Canadian Council of Environment Ministers and Health Canada guidelines for release into a freshwater source. As part of the project, Lafarge did water testing before, during and after evaporation.
The tests showed comparable results for cooling water drawn from Shortts Lake, near Truro, and the wastewater from the holding ponds at Atlantic Industrial Services.
“When I met with the community last April, I said that we would update people on the results of the pilot and making the results available online is a good way to keep everyone informed,” said Environment Minister Randy Delorey. “I’m pleased with the findings from the pilot.
“The results confirm that evaporation provides Nova Scotians with a viable disposal solution.”
The department has received a request for authorization from Atlantic Industrial Services to remove and treat another five million litres at the Lafarge plant. A decision will be announced soon. If approved, any terms and conditions would be the same as the pilot project, requiring dual treatment of the wastewater before evaporation. There are 10 million litres remaining in two ponds at the company’s Debert site.
Triangle Petroleum also has 20 million litres of wastewater in two holdings ponds in Kennetcook, Hants Co.
The wastewater in both areas is from high-pressure hydraulic fracturing that took place in 2007 and 2008.