Envirogen Begins Pilot on Perchlorate Treatment Project in Israel

Dec. 12, 2012
Envirogen to work with major Israeli water treatment firm to bring green technology & perchlorate handling expertise to the Middle East

Envirogen Technologies Inc., in a joint venture with Shikun & Binui Water Ltd., a fully owned subsidiary of Shikun & Binui, Israel's largest construction and real estate group, announced that it has been selected to perform a pilot-scale demonstration of its fluidized-bed bioreactor (FBR) technology for the remediation of perchlorate-laden groundwater in the Israeli city of Ramat Ha’Sharon.

The pilot demonstration was designed in response to an Israeli Water Authority request for proposal to address pollution at a former Israel Military Industries (IMI) site in the city, located north of Tel Aviv. The pilot is aimed at demonstrating the FBR’s efficacy for removing high levels of perchlorate along with nitrates, RDX and chromates from contaminated groundwater at the site. The pilot project would lead to the development of a full-scale treatment system that would be one of the largest perchlorate treatment installations in the world at a site that is destined for residential development.

“Having been involved in its development and optimization over the past two decades, we’ve known for some time how ideal the FBR is for treating contamination of this nature,” Todd Webster, western region vice president for Envirogen said. ”The FBR’s selection over several competing technologies proposed for this project is further proof of its growing acceptance in the industry.”

The pilot plant to be developed for the Ramat Ha’Sharon site will consist of two fluidized-bed bioreactors, a solids-handling system and an effluent polishing system. Influent loadings of perchlorate in excess of 400,000 micrograms per liter (µg/L) will be reduced to a guaranteed maximum of 4 µg/l, along with reduction of nitrates, chromates and the military explosives RDX to meet regulatory standards.

“The area around Ramat Ha’Sharon is one of the worst contamination events we've discovered in groundwater in Israel thus far, both in the diversity of contaminants and its spatial extent,” Sara Elhanani, head of the water quality department in the Israel Water Authority, said. “The volume of perchlorate contaminated water in the aquifer is estimated at 630 million cubic meters. Recently, an inter-ministerial agreement was signed with the Water Authority, supported by the director general of the Prime Minister’s office, settling the financing of the groundwater rehabilitation in this area, in the range of 600 million NIS (156 million USD). This is an important step by the state in addressing its responsibility for rehabilitation of groundwater polluted many years ago by Israel's important security activities, when we and the rest of the world lacked awareness of the environmental consequences of these actions.”

Source: Envirogen