Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation - DOE Oversight Division. Status Report to the Public - December 1999 Page: 23 of 72
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Upper East Fork Poplar Creek Watershed
Located between Pine Ridge and Chestnut Ridge, Upper East Fork Poplar
Creek Watershed includes the main Y-12 Plant and its surrounding area. This
watershed lies to the east of the Bear Creek Valley watershed.
There are more than 70 known sources of contamination in the Upper East
Fork Poplar Creek Watershed.
The central plant area is underlain by a groundwater plume contaminated with
nitrates, uranium-238, and other radionuclides and metals. This plume originates
from the S-3 Ponds (on the divide with Bear Creek Valley Watershed) and from
other sources within the plant.
A carbon tetrachloride-contaminated groundwater plume exists on the east end
of the Plant and extends off site and under the Union Valley Industrial Park. The
source of this plume is unknown, but carbon tetrachloride was used in large
amounts from 1943 until 1946 in processing source material for the electromag-
netic separation process.
Mercury is also a major contaminant in the Upper East Fork Poplar Creek
Watershed. Mercury from past releases is also a contaminant in the soils and
around building foundations. Mercury levels in Upper East Fork Poplar Creek
have been steadily decreasing over the years.
Chestnut Ridge, which is included as part of the Upper East Fork Poplar
Creek Watershed, lies south of the Y-12 Plant and extends to the northern edge
of Bethel Valley Road. The area consists of more than 2,000 acres and drains
south into the Clinch River.
Chestnut Ridge contains a variety of disposal sites that are regulated by
CERCLA, RCRA, or both, depending on the type of contamination at the site.
Several industrial landfills are also located on Chestnut Ridge. The CERCLA
and RCRA sites contain a wide variety of contaminants. These include nitrate-
contaminated sludges fixed in cement, as well as arsenic, copper, lead, zinc, mer-
cury, uranium, fly ash, PCBs, cadmium, chromium, nickel, carbon tetrachloride,
East Tennessee Technology Park Watershed
The East Tennessee Technological Park Watershed occupies 4,600 acres of
land, but only about 1,000 acres haves been affected by operations at the former
K-25 site. The watershed is partially bordered on the west by the Clinch River,
and its tributary Poplar Creek runs through the area.
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Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation - DOE Oversight Division. Status Report to the Public - December 1999, report, December 1, 1999; United States. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc724924/m1/23/: accessed April 22, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.