#1, EcoIslands – Improving the World’s Water, One System at a Time!

 In Company News


What we (EcoIslands LLC) do and why we do it.  

EcoIslands LLC designs, manufactures, and  installs scalable, modular Metal Removal Units which act as aerobic septic tanks to remove pollution from mine impacted waters.  The microbial biofilm which naturally grows in the Metal Removal Unit (MRU) and does the work is self selecting.  As the pollutant load changes (from the water getting cleaner), so to do the diversity and quantities of microscopic critters which produce the biofilm.  So basically, you can remediate any natural pollutant and capture it in the tank or volatilize (de-gas) it to the atmosphere.  It works for agriculture too, where water, nutrients, CO2 and O2 are exchanged with the MRU to increase plant/wetland growth.”

That was a technical mouthful, but that should leave you with a much better idea of how our processes work.  

So, in summary, we build constructed and hyper concentrated wetlands “in a box” made out of thermally welded plastics (black) or lexan (clear).  We can build from 5 gallons to 2,000+ gallons in volume and have a host of custom designs for different purposes, markets, and scales.  

There is no planned obsolescence in an EcoIslands LLC MRU.  

As a backpacker, eagle scout, veteran, and sustainable design professional, I want my systems to last as long as possible.  Plastic does not biodegrade (not in our lifetimes at least), so the MRUs we are building now will last at least 20 years, but should last for 100+ barring Acts of God.

It’s the M1 Abrams Battle Tank Of BioReactors

The larger the tank, the more engineering goes into internal reinforcements for added durability etc.  There isn’t a whole lot we’ve been able to do to them to break them.  You’d have to be really trying.  And, if you should figure out how to break it, we fix it with a welded patch in the field and call it a day.  I like to joke that it’s the M1 Abrams of bioreactor water remediation.   

So, we’ve been installing different embodiments of the Metal Removal Unit technology for about 5 years and been in the bioremediation biz (to clean water/land/air with living organisms as the catalyst) since I got out of college in 2009 from PSU Altoona.  My father and fellow LLC member John Lennox taught there, Microbiology and Genetics, and as the best teacher/guide to have ever lived, finally got through to me the scales of nature.  My mother, Arlene, as a librarian at the same campus (we bleed blue and white) taught me how to read and write, which was useful when I filed my first patent in 2013.  I was recently awarded that first patent, with four more pending, and many more to come.

Any process that lowers the upfront costs of water reclamation is a game changer.

As mentioned, EcoIslands LLC works in multiple markets.  If you want to split hairs, we work in most or all of them.  Water is ubiquitous.  You need it for everything.  Any technology that reduces the up front/ operations and maintenance costs related to reclaiming and cleaning water is a game changer.  And what better technology than a passive wetland bioreactor you can clean with a mulch fork.  

I’ve been mucking sludge out of 20+ generations of MRUs for 5 years

I have visited dozens of treatment sites across the US, and read textbooks cover to cover to figure out what the hell was going on in the tanks.  Much to my surprise and delight, the treatment rates are unmatched in other constructed, semi passive (gravity fed with periodic cleanouts) wetland technologies.  

If you were mining big piles of low concentration but high value ore, you’d call it a bioleachate process.  If you are in a growroom or greenhouse, the MRU system is a giant compost tea generator/aquaponic reservoir and called a PermaCycler.  If you are treating human sewerage at a waste treatment plant, it’s a vertical flow, suspended growth, selectively aerobic or anaerobic biofilm reactor.  

With Our Systems, Speed and Flow Rate Increase Efficiency

In all cases, it requires a very short residence time in comparison to other big constructed wetlands, less than an hour instead of days in some cases.  As it turns out, the faster you run it (to a point) the more efficient the system is in a pounds of “pollution” per dollar remediated.  The MRUs act as a biological engine, supercharged by the periodic and frequent additions of fresh O2 (think air scoop on a supped up coup).  Which means it isn’t so much of a treatment wetland, as a complete treatment stream.

From methane generators, to low pH iron removal, selenium capture, to medical marijuana grow rooms (where legal), to cleaning waste from coal fired power plants, we’ve installed or drawn up systems for each.

Most of our work in the past five years has been done on acid mine drainage sites in PA where we engage in multi year install and maintenance contracts.  This lets us generate an enormous amount of data for study, refinement, and upscaling for larger and larger systems and new metabolic pathways.

I won’t go any deeper for now.  Its a big idea and best for me explain in bitesize chunks.  The next few blogs will be spent talking about different pollution sources, the bioremediation techniques we use for their cleanup, and how it impacts the world on a bigger scale (sustainability, economically, and socially).

Please visit our EcoIslands LLC solution pages to learn more about the specific applications:

BioMining Products – Acid Mine Drainage Bioremediation

PermaCyclers – Agriculture, Aquaponic and Municipal water treatment systems

Recommended Posts

Leave a Comment

Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt

Start typing and press Enter to search

Acid Mine Drainage - Longview Power plant west virginia