BQE Water Designed Zhongkuang SART Plant Reaches Full Production

VANCOUVER, BC – BQE Water Inc. (TSX-V: BQE), a leader in the management of mining and metallurgical waste streams, has advanced the SART plant it designed for a gold metallurgical facility owned by Shandong Zhongkuang Group Co., Ltd. (“Zhongkuang”) to full production. Located in the Shandong Province in Eastern China, the plant is now being operated under the ongoing technical supervision of BQE Water.

Implementing SART at the site improves both the environmental performance and project economics of the metallurgical facility. Specifically, the SART plant eliminates the need for cyanide destruction, recovers copper and zinc as separate sulphide concentrates, and recycles free cyanide recovered by the plant to gold leaching.

The Zhongkuang SART plant also represents many firsts:

  • It is the first application of SART globally where the cyanide competing base metals, copper and zinc, are recovered simultaneously from the leach solution as two separate high-grade concentrates that can be sold to generate incremental revenues.
  • It is the first commercial scale application of SART in China.
  • It is the first SART plant where lime is used to control gas emissions to reduce operating costs and control the build-up of salts in the process water.
  • It is the first SART plant to be integrated into a complex metallurgical flowsheet that combines mineral flotation with cyanidation and SART in a Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) metallurgical facility with complete water recycle.

“We are very proud of our China based operations team for this significant achievement and that they were able to do so considering the challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. The Zhongkuang SART plant is our flagship project for the China gold sector and other gold producers in the country are taking notice,” stated Songlin Ye, Vice President for Asia at BQE Water.

David Kratochvil, President & CEO of BQE Water, added, “The many firsts associated with the Zhongkuang SART plant demonstrates our leadership in SART technology. And through the unique combination of engineering know-how and operations expertise, the project also shows our ability to reduce risks and achieve predictable outcomes for our clients.”

About the Significance of Cyanide Management for the Gold Mining Industry
Regulations around the world are advancing and target not only residual cyanide contained in wastewater and tailings produced by mining and metallurgical operations but also place strict limits for cyanidation and cyanide destruction by-products such as ammonia, cyanate, thiocyanate and nitrite. A key aspect of cyanide management is cyanide recovery and recycle. The more cyanide that can be reused, the less fresh new cyanide that needs to be consumed and the less cyanide that must be destroyed by using additional chemicals which produce by-products requiring additional management. The goal is to ensure all discharges are non-toxic and do not cause impacts to the receiving environment. As such, proper cyanide management is key to the permitting of new projects and securing a social license for gold producers.

About the Significance of Shandong Province for China’s Gold Production
Gold output for Shandong Province reached 120 tonnes (3.8 M troy ounces) in 2018 and remained steady into 2020, and accounts for 30% of China’s total gold production. The province is home to the country’s top gold producers who are expanding their influence globally. In the region alone where BQE Water’s new SART plant recently began operation, there are over a dozen metallurgical plants that focus on gold extraction and refining.

About BQE Water’s Expertise in Cyanide Management
BQE Water is a global leader in the SART process which enables cyanide consumed by base metals to be recovered and recycled, lowering the cost of gold extraction and reducing the environmental footprint of gold mining projects. BQE Water also provides solutions to manage the by-products of cyanidation and cyanide destruction such as ammonia, nitrite and thiocyanate removal.

About BQE Water
BQE Water is a service provider specializing in water treatment and management for metals mining, smelting and refining. We are helping to transform the way the industry thinks about water in the context of natural resource projects by offering services and expertise which enables more sustainable water management practices and improved overall project performance at reduced risks. BQE Water invests in innovation and has developed unique intellectual property through the commercialization of several new technologies at mine sites around the world for organizations including Glencore, Jiangxi Copper, Freeport-McMoRan and the US EPA. BQE Water is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada and trades on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol BQE. Visit www.bqewater.com for more information.

****

The Toronto Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or the accuracy of this release.

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION
Certain information contained herein may not be based on historical fact and therefore constitutes “forward-looking information” under applicable Canadian securities legislation. This includes without limitation statements containing the words “plan”, “expect”, “project”, “estimate”, “intend”, “believe”, “anticipate”, “may”, “will” and other similar words or expressions. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are made, and are subject to a variety of risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual events or results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, the Company’s dependence on key personnel and contracts, uncertainty with respect to the profitability of the Company’s technologies, competition, technology risk, the Company’s ability to protect its intellectual property and proprietary information, fluctuations in commodity prices, currency risk, environmental regulation and the Company’s ability to manage growth and other factors described in the Company’s filings with the Canadian securities regulators at www.sedar.com (including without limitation the factors described in the section entitled “Risks and Uncertainties” in the Company’s MD&A for the year ended December 31, 2019). Given these risks and uncertainties, the reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. All forward-looking information contained herein is based on management’s current expectations and the Company undertakes no obligation to revise or update such forward-looking information to reflect subsequent events or circumstances, except as required by law.