« Back

Fate and Consequences to the Environment of Reagents Associated with Rock Phosphate Processing

02-104-172Final

Abstract

This study was designed to determine the fate and environmental consequences of reagents used for beneficiating Florida phosphate minerals. The project consists of five major components: 1) establishing an in-plant reagent balance by surveying and sampling and analysis of all plant streams; 2) investigating the leaching process and degradation pattern of the reagents by laboratory bench scale testing; 3) identifying the environmental fate of the reagents using sophisticated sample extraction and separation techniques and advanced assaying instruments; 4) determining the impact of reagents on ground water by soil boring and analyses, and well installation and monitoring; and 5) determining biodegradation rates for fatty acid, amine and fuel oil. Extensive data generated from this study indicate that the chemicals used in phosphate beneficiation pose little environmental problem.