Clean water from a greenhouse gas
This article was originally written and submitted as part of a Canada 150 Project, the Innovation Storybook, to crowdsource stories of Canadian innovation with partners across Canada. The content has since been migrated to Ingenium’s Channel, a digital hub featuring curated content related to science, technology and innovation.
What if one environmental issue could be used to address another? What if one of the greatest environmental concerns today – increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels – could be lessened by polluted mine water?
This is what Doug Eaton imagined while driving on the backroads of Yukon Territory. His idea was to use acid rock drainage (ARD) to capture and lock away atmospheric carbon dioxide.
From this was born Terra CO2 Technologies. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, this Canadian company is developing the technology for conversion and long-term storage of carbon dioxide by reacting it with metal sulphide minerals to produce stable metal carbonate compounds.
By converting sulphide mine wastes to nonreactive stable compounds, Terra’s technology can reduce or eliminate the long-term stewardship costs associated with ARD as well as help reduce the costs related to carbon taxes or cap and trade policies.