Founded in 2008, CLEARAS Water Recovery, Inc (“CLEARAS) is a resource recovery company that has developed and is commercializing sustainable wastewater treatment technology (Advanced Biological Nutrient Recovery – “ABNR™ System”) for industrial and municipal markets. ABNR is a patented and disruptive wastewater treatment technology which addresses the current and future high priority pain point of nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) pollution. The technology is a sustainable, low carbon solution that helps transform waste to value and results in strong competitive advantages with an enduring value proposition.
CLEARAS is headquartered in Missoula, MT with a growing and strong presence in the Intermountain West and Great Lakes regions. The Company is partnered with the City of Missoula and maintains a process development center located at 1100 Clark Fork, Ln, Missoula, MT 59808 connected to the wastewater treatment facility which provides CLEARAS with the opportunity to optimize ABNR performance, qualify vendors and advance intellectual property.
With over 40 executed pilot and commercial demonstration projects the Company has successfully integrated biological, mechanical and information systems to deliver a highly reliable treatment solution that bolts-on to existing wastewater infrastructure. CLEARAS is currently under contract or in the final stages of contract negotiation with the following full-scale wastewater treatment projects.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), nutrient pollution (excess nitrogen and phosphorous in waste water) is the number three cause of water body impairment in the United States. Today nutrient pollution effects over 14,000 U.S. water bodies resulting in over 3.5 million acres of lakes and reservoirs not meeting Federal, State or Local water quality requirements. Increasingly, a “tertiary” or “third-step” process is necessary to remove these nutrients as Federal guidelines, and the resulting State water regulations, have become more rigorous.
Technology innovation and investment in advanced wastewater treatment, both domestically and internationally, is driven by tightening regulatory environments, population increase, urbanization and aging, and inadequate infrastructure. Existing wastewater treatment solutions expose two fundamental problems:
Problem 1: Existing wastewater treatment systems are costly, disposal-based linear systems. Legacy technology was designed and built with the mentality of removal. We make, we use, and we dispose. The consequences of this approach result in:
Problem 2: Current systems are inefficient at removing nutrients, primarily nitrogen and phosphorus that when discharged lead to polluted waterways. Excess nitrogen and phosphorus in the water causes algae to grow faster than ecosystems can handle. These algae blooms result in:
Through the unique application of biomimicry, ABNR leverages and enhances nature’s time-tested patterns of nutrient recovery (Problem 2 identified above) by taking the problem (algae blooms) and turning it into the solution. The ABNR System optimizes the relationship between mechanical and biological processes in a controlled and continuous flow environment to recover nutrients resulting in wastewater quality for reuse or discharge. The problem is the solution.
The ABNR solution also addresses Problem 1 (identified above) as the technology is at the forefront of a paradigm shift in wastewater treatment from removal to recovery. ABNR enables wastewater treatment plants to transform waste to value in a regenerative model. The technology is a sustainable approach to nutrient recovery, achieves best-in-class water quality, is modular and scalable and results in a valuable co-product that can be sourced into a variety of emerging market applications including plastics, foams, animal feed and soil enhancements. These lead to a competitive economic alternative to traditional, linear based removal systems which merely transition the problem from a water-based problem (nutrients in water) to a solids-based problem (metal salts and nutrients in sludge).