oil sands tailings ponds

The densified coarse tailings stream is combined with MFT and gypsum (CaSO4) to form CT. Efforts are being made to reduce the impact that tailings ponds have on the environment. The overall tailings balance, however, shows that CT production does not entirely reduce the MFT inventory, since additional MFT is produced from the cyclone overflow effluent. Please read our Commenting Policy first. MFT is about 85% water by volume and requires large storage ponds for disposal. A previous version of this article stated that all of the fish eggs in the untreated naphthenic acid solution died.

To estimate emissions, emission factors based on snapshot measurements, and varying models and assumptions are commonly used. Large numbers of the bubbles could be dropped into the ponds and, powered by the sun, would chemically break down some nasty organic wastes. In fact, release water chemistry plays the key roles in both extraction efficiency and tailings characteristics; therefore, monitoring of the release water chemistry deserves special attention for the overall performance of oil sands plants. Department of Renewable Resources, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2G7, Canada. Instead, the water and contaminants from the pond seep into the soil surrounding it, potentially contaminating groundwater and harming wildlife surrounding the pond. Depending on the grade of the ore, the amount of dispersed silt and clay particles varies considerably but averages about 17% by mass of the solids in the tailings stream.

Scarecrows float in a Suncor oil sands tailings pond, to keep birds from landing, in Fort McMurray Alta., on June 13, 2017. “We really do need to ratchet up the urgency with which we’re addressing this to ensure that we are moving towards longer-term solutions, to give comfort to communities that live downstream from the oil sands, but also ensure we’re not creating enormous environmental liabilities for Canadians in the future,” he said. Get a roundup of the most important and intriguing national stories delivered to your inbox every weekday. “I absolutely take these findings to heart.”. [3] If aquatic organisms enter these ponds, significant levels of damage can occur. The ERCB is planning to issue further directives to deal with the existing MFT inventory. As well, these ponds exist almost indefinitely, with over 830 million cubic meters requiring long term containment. “If we do find evidence of a violation in the Fisheries Act, we will take appropriate action,” he said. casino suspects, COVID-19: B.C. "Are they actually going to be safe for the aquatic life downstream?". The commission, relying on years of peer-reviewed research as well as international experts, concluded that’s no longer true. border, Voters return Saskatchewan Party to power for fourth-straight mandate, Labour board calls Alberta hospital staff walkout illegal, orders picketers back to work, Coronavirus vaccine by Oxford-AstraZeneca produces immune response among adults, Trump calls U.S. coronavirus case spike a media ‘conspiracy’, Alberta Labour Relations Board holds emergency hearing into AUPE wildcat strike, Coronavirus: B.C.’s top doctor calls record COVID-19 case numbers over 3-day period ‘sobering’, COVID-19 vaccine in development showing promise in adults, Trump calls U.S. COVID-19 spike a media conspiracy, This beetle’s exterior is so strong it can get run over by a car and still survive, On the Trump train: the supporters standing by their man, NAFTA members consider environmental investigation into Canada’s oilsands tailings, Alberta, Ottawa sign deal that cuts major environmental monitoring of oilsands. © Copyright 2020 The Globe and Mail Inc. All rights reserved. Tailings ponds store water used in oil sands extraction, and contain a complex mixture of wastes that are toxic to vegetation and animals.

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