Canada Oilsands Waste To Be Washed Away With Water?

FORT MCMURRAY ALB

While the world watches, the mining companies operating here have been allowed by regulators to pursue a clean-up technique called water capping. It’s supposed to work like this: put the tailings into a mined-out pit, then cover it with fresh water from a nearby river or reservoir. The idea, according to oil producer Syncrude, is that the tailings will settle to the bottom and over time the lake will turn into a healthy ecosystem supporting fish, animals and aquatic plants. “It’s biologically and chemically an impossible fantasy,” said David Schindler, a former University of Alberta professor and renowned freshwater scientist and officer of the Order of Canada.

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