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Wednesday, September 19,2012

Can silica-dwelling superbugs clean fracking fluid?

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Minnesota researchers say they may have uncovered a way to clean up fracking fluid after it returns from under the Earth's surface using living organisms that usually reside in silica formations.

The polluted water that comes back to the surface is filled with dozens of proprietary, secret chemicals. Oil and gas companies now try to use the fluid again or pump it underground to dispose of it.

The bacteria can remove many of the chemicals that pollute the water. Of course, that treatment wouldn't do much to eliminate air pollution caused by fracking or prevent the polluted water from affecting drinking water nearby.

See the story at Discovery News.

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