Vancouver, BC – BQE Water Inc. (TSX-V: BQE), a leader in the management of mine wastewaters and metallurgical bleed streams, is the proud recipient of the 2021 Environmental Award from the Engineers & Geoscientists British Columbia (EGBC) for its Kemess Selen-IX™ Plant to remove selenium from mine water. The award is granted to a project demonstrating outstanding achievement in engineering excellence in its contribution towards environmental protection and environmental enhancement.
The Kemess plant is the first full-scale water treatment plant to utilize our physicochemical Selen-IX™ technology to remove the selenate form of selenium from mine water. It represents a step change for the mining industry to address the growing environmental issue related to selenium. The plant provides proof of concept for the removal of selenium to less than 2 parts per billion without reliance on dilution to comply with end-of-pipe water quality regulations, avoids the risks of acute and chronic toxicity linked with biological treatment, supports intermittent and/or seasonal operations, and eliminates the long-term liabilities associated with waste management by producing a stable and non-toxic by-product with reuse potential in steel production.
“Being recognized with the EGBC Environmental Award for our Kemess Selen-IX™ project means everything to us,” said David Kratochvil, President & CEO of BQE Water. “It has been a long road with countless hours and through it all, our team was steadfast in their perseverance and dedication. I also want to acknowledge the role of Centerra Gold, Seabridge Gold and their respective First Nations partners for their commitment to seek better solutions for the environment by embracing innovation. As we move towards a low carbon future, environmentally responsible mining is essential to supply the needed metals. Many mine sites have selenium as a contaminant of concern and Selen-IX™ will contribute to the sustainable extraction of metals worldwide.”
Selenium is a micronutrient essential for all life. Naturally occurring in the earth’s crust, it is released into water in large quantities by mining. Selenium becomes toxic with long-term chronic effects such as physical deformities and genetic mutations at low doses with selenium bioaccumulation starting in invertebrates and fish before moving up the food chain. These concerns have led North American regulatory agencies to enact selenium discharge limits ranging from 1 to 10 parts per billion.
Watch the story of our Selen-IX™ development in our EGBC award video on YouTube: https://bit.ly/BQEAwardVideo
More information about the awards and all winners is available here: https://bit.ly/EGBCAwardWinners
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.