Babak Khodaparast is a Canadian entrepreneur, inventor and the Founder of Clean Oil International. The idea for Clean Oil arose in 2008, when Khodaparast didn’t have access to water for a week due to an oil spill in a lake near his hometown in Iran. The water had become completely unhygienic and contaminated. He couldn’t believe how long it took to clean up the oil and rehabilitate the water. Years later, Khodaparast decided to invent something that could mitigate similar oil disasters that continued to persist across the globe.
Since its inception in 2013, the company has been focused on R&D to refine the technology behind their products. Their nanofiltration technology is being developed by a team of researchers and scientists with experience from Harvard University, Cornell University and Ryerson University. To-date, they’ve been awarded funding from the Canadian Government, as well as the Norman Esch Foundation.
The funding has enabled Clean Oil to conceptualize, design, build and test a revolutionary, patented device which is being commercialized in the coming months. The result is one of the world’s first autonomous, portable oil skimmers which leverages nanofiltration technology to separate oil from water. To learn more about the company and its mission, we interviewed Khodaparast below.
What does Clean Oil do exactly?
Clean Oil will offer governments, municipalities and oil companies an autonomous vessel (a skimmer) that leverages nanofilters to clean oil spills from the surface of water. Our skimmers can be deployed to the scene of the accident much quicker and start mitigating the effects immediately, through rapid collection of oil with high accuracy & volume.
What is the purpose of the invention and its potential future impact?
Ultimately, our mission is to contribute to environmental sustainability efforts by mitigating the severe effects of oil disasters, many of which are not obvious. In many cases, oil spills can have devastating ripple effects on domestic fisheries, agriculture, health, and tourism. In developing this technology, we hope to empower governments, municipalities and oil companies to protect those industries and inspire further innovation in clean/green-technology.
What are your future goals and projections for the company?
Currently, we are partnering up with local municipalities in Canada to pilot our product for the first time in geo-specific lakes and rivers. After further testing and proven results, we plan on commercializing the technology by selling the units to oil companies internationally. We believe that this technology will become an attractive investment for both oil companies and governments as environmental stewardship becomes a greater priority and the overall adoption/investment in clean-tech continues to grow.
What are some highlights of Clean Oil’s patented technology?
Our internationally recognized, award-winning nanofiltration technology, can purify water up to 99.8% on-site without any need for water rehabilitation units. A fleet of Clean Oil skimmers (5 units) can clean up 100,000 litres of oil within two hours of deployment, while remaining 50%-70% cheaper than conventional oil spill cleanup methods. Additionally, our skimmers can also be deployed up to 5x faster than conventional methods, when it matters most.
What do you think the impact of your product will be on the environment in the future?
We see a real threat to the environment and economy for at least the next hundred years, even with carbon emission and cars switching to electric. As the climate changes, we also see that water shortages are going to be a serious issue in the near future. Therefore, protecting oceans should be a top priority for everybody and is critical to the well-being of people around the world. Our innovations can play a very important role in helping countries protect their water resources & more importantly, helping the oil industry mitigate their impacts on the environment when accidents happen.
To learn more about Clean Oil International and Babak Khodaparast, click here.