There may be a solution the large amounts of contaminated soil present on the earth's surface. WI Environmental has created XR-88, which " treats and turns heavy metals and poisons inert, making them harmless to the
environment for safe, easy disposal."
The company, based out of Whidbey Island in Washington State (the same place that has tidal turbines in the works), focuses on everything from contaminated mine water to air quality and stormwater runoff. XR-88 is applied to a contaminated site, which then breaks down the harmful chemicals into a safe, sludge-like substance.
The company focuses mainly on sites in the pacific northwest, including the 3,800 abandoned mine sites, the 12 million tons of coal from Washington's lone coal plant, and 14 million pounds of pollutants dumped in the Puget Sound annually.
The Puget Sound (photo from Wikimedia Commons)
WI Environmental is expanding, though. According to a recent article in the Seattle Times, the company has just "signed a multi-million-dollar deal to license his environmental technology to begin cleaning up China's heavily contaminated rivers and
Founder and president Tim Wandell spent five years in China, and witnessed plenty of pollution at their many factories, "all types of places are loaded with contaminants," said Wandell to the Seattle Times, "Look out
the back side of a factory and here's this huge mountain of the stuff."
Beyond China, WI Environmental continues to move forward, announcing just last week a partnership with a company in South Africa to export their XR-88 product.
Is a product like XR-88 really the best and most efficient way to clean our earth and air, though? Certainly avoiding pollution in the first place would be best, but we have to try out as many solutions as possible.
This technology isn't without it's problems, either. Often environmental remediation of this kind can release many of those trapped chemicals into the air during the cleansing process, in addition to being a large and expensive undertaking.
What do you think about environmental, specifically soil remediation? How about XR-88, does it really work? Is there a better way to clean up our earth and water? Share your thoughts below...