Two million litres of treated wastewater from hydraulic fracturing is being transported from holding ponds in Debert, near Truro, Nova Scotia, to a Lafarge Canada cement plant in Brookfield 30 kilometres to the south.
The re-use of the wastewater from Atlantic Industrial Services is a pilot project by the province to see if it is a viable means of disposal. The water is currently in holding ponds in Debert which are not designed to hold the water for a long term.
The treated water is being shipped by truck over three weeks to the cement plant where it is used as coolant in the kiln, evaporating at 700 C.
The wastewater meets Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment and Health Canada guidelines to be released into freshwater, but Lafarge will be testing its equipment before and after using the water for residual inorganic materials.
The province’s Environment Minister, Randy Delorey, provided details to the community in Truro on April 16:
“After considering the community’s concerns and reviewing the tests on the treated water, I am satisfied that this pilot project can proceed safely. I wanted to share this information with the community before giving the company permission to move forward with its plans.”