Posted by Tim Lucas-Duke
Much of the naturally occurring radioactivity in fracking wastewater might be removed by blending it with another wastewater from acid mine drainage.
In hydraulic fracturing—or fracking, as it is sometimes called—millions of tons of water are injected at high pressure down wells to crack open shale deposits buried deep underground and extract natural gas trapped within the rock. Some of the water flows back up through the well, along with natural brines and the natural gas.
“Fracking wastewater and acid mine drainage each pose well-documented environmental and public health risks. But in laboratory tests, we found that by blending them in the right proportions we can bind some of the fracking contaminants into solids that can be removed before the water is discharged back into streams and rivers,” says Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment.
“This could be an effective way to treat Marcellus Shale hydraulic fracturing wastewater, while providing a beneficial use for acid mine drainage that currently is contaminating waterways in much of the northeastern United States,” Vengosh says. “It’s a win-win for the industry and the environment.”
Read more: http://www.futurity.org/blending-fracking-wastewater-win-win/