Bunker Hill Sediment Characterization Study

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The long history of mineral extraction in the Coeur d’Alene Basin has left a legacy of heavy metal laden mine tailings that have accumulated along the Coeur d’Alene River and its tributaries (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2001; Barton, 2002). Silver, lead and zinc were the primary metals of economic interest in the area, but the ores contained other elements that have become environmental hazards including zinc, cadmium, lead, arsenic, nickel, and copper. The metals have contaminated the water and sediments of Lake Coeur d’Alene, and continue to be transported downstream to Spokane Washington via the Spokane River. In 1983, the ... continued below

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Yancey, Neal A. & Bruhn, Debby F. December 1, 2009.

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Description

The long history of mineral extraction in the Coeur d’Alene Basin has left a legacy of heavy metal laden mine tailings that have accumulated along the Coeur d’Alene River and its tributaries (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2001; Barton, 2002). Silver, lead and zinc were the primary metals of economic interest in the area, but the ores contained other elements that have become environmental hazards including zinc, cadmium, lead, arsenic, nickel, and copper. The metals have contaminated the water and sediments of Lake Coeur d’Alene, and continue to be transported downstream to Spokane Washington via the Spokane River. In 1983, the EPA listed the Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical Complex on the National Priorities List. Since that time, many of the most contaminated areas have been stabilized or isolated, however metal contaminants continue to migrate through the basin. Designation as a Superfund site causes significant problems for the economically depressed communities in the area. Identification of primary sources of contamination can help set priorities for cleanup and cleanup options, which can include source removal, water treatment or no action depending on knowledge about the mobility of contaminants relative to water flow. The mobility of contaminant mobility under natural or engineered conditions depends on multiple factors including the physical and chemical state (or speciation) of metals and the range of processes, some of which can be seasonal, that cause mobilization of metals. As a result, it is particularly important to understand metal speciation (National Research Council, 2005) and the link between speciation and the rates of metal migration and the impact of natural or engineered variations in flow, biological activity or water chemistry.

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  • Report No.: INL/EXT-09-16499
  • Grant Number: DE-AC07-05ID14517
  • DOI: 10.2172/971372 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 971372
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc930656

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • December 1, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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  • Dec. 2, 2016, 8:46 p.m.

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Yancey, Neal A. & Bruhn, Debby F. Bunker Hill Sediment Characterization Study, report, December 1, 2009; [Idaho]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc930656/: accessed September 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.