Fracking wastewater mixed with acid mine drainage reduces radioactivity

By on January 17, 2014

Image: Hydraulic fracturing drill rig in Pennsylvania (Credit: Environmental Protection Agency)


A study led by Duke University researchers found that radioactivity in fracking wastewater can be reduced by blending it with acid mine drainage, according to Science Daily.

By mixing the two types of wastewater in the right proportions, some of the fracking contaminants bind onto solids. The solids can then be removed prior to discharging the water into streams and other waterways.

The new process provides a way to treat hydraulic fracturing wastewater, and should help reduce acid mine drainage contamination across the the northeastern United States. Additionally, hydraulic fracturing operations can use the blending technique to recycle water, limiting the need to tap into local freshwater supplies.

Image: Hydraulic fracturing drill rig in Pennsylvania (Credit: Environmental Protection Agency)

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