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Algeponics Environmental Friendly Fracking Solution
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Algeponics Environmental Friendly Fracking Solution

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A new "green" solution to process wastewater from hydraulic fracturing by using algae grown in an enclosed facility. The prototype can process 50,000 gallons of fracking wastewater per day, producing …

A new "green" solution to process wastewater from hydraulic fracturing by using algae grown in an enclosed facility. The prototype can process 50,000 gallons of fracking wastewater per day, producing an algae that is converted to biofuel.

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  • 1. ALGEPOWER INC.Algeponics ®Algeponics ® is a patented controlled environment for growing algae on what would otherwise beenvironmentally harmful nutrient streams.The FactsThe Marcellus Shale formation can be found beneath about 60percent of Pennsylvania’s total land mass, where it is buried to depthsof up to 9,000 feet The Marcellus shale stretches fromWest Virginia and Ohio through much of Pennsylvania, andcovers a substantial portion of the lower half of New York State. It isestimated to contain up to 500 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, makingit one of the largest gas field in the world. 10% of that gas (50 trillioncubic feet) might be recoverable.The Goal • Prevention of contamination of ground water by Phytoremediation of frackwater from the hydrofracking process. • Flowback water is collected, cleaned and recycled naturally saving municipal wastewater treatment plants and long distance trucking fees • New Green job opportunities are created with the Algeponics ® system and biofuel production • Expand local tax revenues • Promote locally produced biofuelAlgepower Inc. plans to utilize its patented Algeponics ® farm technology to treat frackwater atthe source, removing the salt and other toxins from the water and recycling clean water to be re-used in subsequent fracking. This will be achieved by growing combinations of algae that areable to thrive in the frackwater environment and at the same time, take the unwanted toxins outof that water. The algae which are grown will then be converted into biofuel using varioustechnologies. Through the rapid validation and deployment of this technology, Algepower willprovide the oil and gas industry with a cost-savings and green solution to the fracking pollutionproblem and an attractive response to the rising public calls for fracking moratoria. It willprovide the people of Pennsylvania with a way to maintain and grow the economic, job, and taxbase represented by the Marcellus shale reserves, while at the same time preserving theenvironment. In addition, Algepower will add numerous green-collar jobs to Pennsylvania’seconomy, through its algae farming, biofuel refining, and distribution operations. 1
  • 2. The GoodThe economic benefits to communities across the Commonwealth come predominantly throughimportant employment and income effects on local businesses who supply the industry (such as oilfield service companies, restaurants and retailers, and hotels), and effects that result fromemployees spending their wages locally. Unlike other US gas drilling operations natural gas willprovide relatively little new tax revenues to local jurisdictions in Pennsylvania since natural gas is notsubject to local taxation in the Commonwealth.The BadHydrofracking is done by sealing off a portion of the well and injecting large amounts of waterunder very high pressure into the isolated portion of the hole. The high pressure fractures the rockand pushes the fractures open.Marcellus wastewater is typically high in chlorides, heavy metals, organics that flowback with thefluids out of fractured wells, and chemicals added in the fracking process. The Marcellus Shaleis an ancient ocean, and the flowback is often 5-times saltier than ocean water. The minimalregulations for properly treating the large volumes of liquids created by hydraulic fracturing havenot proven adequate. Foremost on the list of potentially serious environmental problemsthroughout the Marcellus Shale region is groundwater pollution resulting from irresponsiblydischarged frackwater. With proper handling, flowback need not be a problem. WithALGEPOWER’s patented Algeponics® farms it can also provide added value as biofuel.The SolutionOur Vision for PennsylvaniaBased on our work to date, and onour survey of available literature, webelieve that our Algeponics ® systemcan be a viable and cost effectivetechnology for treating and recyclingfrackwater. Since the year 2000,over 32,500 wells have been drilled inPennsylvania.http://www.dep.state.pa.us/dep/deputate/minres/oilgas/2000-2011Well%20DrilledbyCountySummary.htmWe envision establishing Algeponics® farms to phyto-remediate collectedflowback water from numerous wellsthroughout the region. A single 1-acre farm could process approximately 50,000 gallons/day of frackwater, removing the toxins,and recycling the water for additional fracking. The algae grown in those facilities could beconverted to biofuel, and in the process, the toxins would be destroyed or sequestered. Thissolution would, in principle, replace the currently unsustainable practice of trucking frackwater tomunicipal water treatment facilities or dumping into waterways. The recycled flowback waterwould reduce the need for fresh water and be more economical and environmentally sound.The impacts on jobs and the economic in Pennsylvania would be game-changing. 2
  • 3. http://www.alleghenyconference.org/PEL/PDFs/EconomicImpactOilGasInPA1108.pdf Since 2008 when this economic impact statement was compiled, oil and gas exploration activities have grown dramatically.In addition to helping avoid an environmentally-based shutdown of fracking in Pennsylvania, theAlgeponics ® solution would also generate significant jobs on its own, between the constructionand maintenance of covered containment lagoons, and the operation of numerous Algeponics ®farm facilities, the processing of algae into biofuel, and the distribution of that fuel. Manytruckers who are currently trucking frackwater to municipal water treatment facilities could beredeployed to bring frackwater from covered lagoons to a central Algeponics ® farm.What Algepower Inc. is seekingWe would like to conduct a short term prototype program in partnership with a qualifieduniversity in Marcellus area, to test out the viability of this approach. The project would:• Test frack water from various wells and impoundment lagoons.• Test various algae species for best algae for remediation• Based on the most effective algae or algae combination, determine the best available technology for converting the algae to fuel• Determine the size and cost of a viable commercial unitWe believe that the research project could be completed within 3 - 4 months from the time offunding, and that if a qualified research institution is willing to join us, the entire research project couldbe done with a budget of under $700,000. 3
  • 4. Algepower Inc.’s HistoryPatented -- In June 2006, Algepower received a provisional patent for its hydroponic algae productionsystem and trademarked the process; Algeponics® The final patent was issued in May 2008. “Busch,Gail; and Dupont, Jacques M., to Algepower LLC Hydroponic growing enclosure and method for growing,harvesting, processing and distributing algae, related microorganisms and their by products 07536827 Cl.47-62R”Grants and AwardsAlgepower was awarded its first grant from the Vermont Department of Agriculture in 2007 to fund itsfeasibility and modeling study which was carried out by the Gund Institute of Ecological Economics,University of Vermont.Algepower was awarded a second grant from the NRCS of the US Department of Agriculture in 2008 todevelop its protype proof of concept project on the Blue Spruce Farm in Bridgeport, Vermont.Algepower was awarded a third grant from Central Vermont Power Service in 2009 to further its technicaldevelopment.Algepower was also awarded a fourth grant from US Department of Energy through the VermontSustainable Jobs Fund in 2009 to further the technical development of the algae’s lipid content.Algepower was a Semifinalist in MIT’s Clean Energy Competition in 2008.Contacts: Gail Busch, President Laurence Baer, Dir. Bus. Development Montpelier, VT Columbia, MD 802 223 0705 410 884 9555 gail@algepower.com LHBaer@algepower.com 4
  • 5. AddendumAlgepower’s patented vertical hydroponic systemAlgepower’s patented gravity-fed tray system allows forcontinuous harvesting of algae. Facilities are configured with racksof trays on 14 levels, which allow algae to multiply as it progressesthrough the system to the bottom rack where it is harvested. Naturallight through the building roof and walls is augmented by LED lightingsystems to allow 24/7 growing, year round, in any geographicalenvironment. 5
  • 6. Algeponics ® FacilitiesAlgepower has partnered with Arizon ®, the preeminent manufacturer of Air-SupportedStructures, to develop a unique and patented facility and system for producing algae from wastestreams.Algepower’s Air-Supported facility design provides Algepower with significant advantages overcompetitive algae production schemes.o Temperature and humidity levels are easily controlled providing the optimal growth conditions for algaeo The structure’s material allows ample natural light to penetrate, resulting in significantly reduced energy costso The design allows for total control and manipulation of the algae through their growing cycle o Itcosts only 20 - 33% of the cost of traditional construction, but can still be engineered for any environment, including winds up to 190 MPH.o It be assembled quickly and without the potential risks, problems or delays of traditional construction - often without zoning constraints.o Algeponics® farms have a very small footprint. A 1-2 acre Algeponics® farm has far higher yields compared to many acres needed for traditional algae production. This allows us to co- locate our facilities near the pollution sources which provide the nutrients for our growth.o Our unique facility design allows for Algepower to scale up its operations rapidly and dramatically to meet demand. 6