BioteQ begins operating Raglan mine treatment plant earlier than predicted
VANCOUVER, BC-BioteQ Environmental Technologies recently reported that its water treatment plant at Xstrata Nickel's Raglan mine in northern Quebec has resumed operation and began discharging treated water in mid-April, approximately one month earlier than the company forecast last November. BioteQ's operations staff started the plant up at the beginning of April and began discharging treated water to the local environment one week later. The company expects to treat 800,000 cubic metres (m3) this year, down slightly from the 816,000 m3 treated in 2006. This was about 50% beyond the plant's original design capacity of 550,000 m3 per year. The increase in capacity is attributed to process modifications made in 2005, as well as improved operations management by the operating staff. The treated water is maintained at <0.2 parts per million nickel concentration to ensure that the plant meets the regulated discharge criteria of <0.5 parts per million total nickel content. Northern Quebec's harsh climate limits the period of water treatment to only five or six months of the year. The treatment plant, owned and operated by BioteQ, uses the company's proprietary ChemSulfide(tm) process, to selectively recover nickel from low-grade wastewater. The treated water produced in the BioteQ plant can be released directly into the pristine local environment at Raglan and produces no byproduct sludge requiring long-term storage. BioteQ is currently seeking a patent for the process that was developed between 2001 and 2003 for the Raglan site, and can be applied to other nickel-bearing waste streams. More information is available from Brad Marchant at BioteQ Environmental Technologies, 604/685-1243, FAX 604/685-7778, Web site www.bioteq.ca.