BioteQ Environmental Technologies (TSX-BQE) of Vancouver has just been awarded the 2008 China Mining Environmental Protection Award for its design of a $3.6 million water treatment plant in Dexing, China.
The plant, located in Jiangxi Province, is treating acid drainage from several sources within China’s largest Jiangxi Copper mine. It removed more than 700,000 pounds of copper in its first six months of operation and its designers say that it has a capacity to remove up to 3.6 million pounds annually.
Prior to the installation, acid mine drainage containing dissolved copper was sent to waste dumps and low-grade stockpiles where it was treated with lime to handle the wastewater. With changing regulations in China, lime treatment alone was not adequate to comply with environmental requirements and that’s where BioteQ’s design came in to solve the problem by removing the copper contaminates from the wastewater, reducing metal-laden sludge, and produce clean water for reuse in the mine. The water treatment process also recovers the copper in a form that can be sent to a conventional refinery and recycled to make useful products.
The plant is expected to deliver a three-year payback on capital based on operating profit from recovered metals.