ADAPTIVE WATERSHED MANAGEMENT IN THE COPPER BASIN: EVALUATION OF EARLY SUCCESSES
English

K.Y. Bell, C.L. Stokes, F. Miller, K.L. Faulk
2007 Journal American Society of Mining and Reclamation  
The Copper Basin Mining District Site (Site) has been host to 150 years of copper mining, beneficiation and mineral processing, and sulfuric acid and other chemical production processes that have left a legacy of environmental degradation that has affected the Ocoee River. In order to improve the health of the Ocoee River, the US Environmental Protection Agency, Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, and Glenn Springs Holdings, Inc. a subsidiary of Occidental Petroleum Company,
more » ... reed to conduct a cooperative, voluntary environmental restoration and redevelopment of the Copper Basin. Part of this agreement was to develop and implement interim actions to alleviate contaminant loading to the Ocoee River so that short-term progress could be realized while long-term remedial actions were identified and implemented in upper parts of the watersheds. Use of an adaptive management approach to watershed restoration has resulted in early identification of the most significant problems. The major benefit of this process has been early remediation of the worst problems in a complex set. This has allowed valuable resources traditionally utilized for full site characterizations to be applied toward remedial activities, which could potentially change the original character of the Site. Results of the early restoration successes in this hard-rock mining impacted watershed are presented along with long-term remedial actions being conducted in upper parts of the watersheds. Measurable success has been achieved in part because of the flexibility resulting from regulatory collaboration and stakeholder cooperation.
doi:10.21000/jasmr07010043 fatcat:rh65f7jbcndfhpvgaieatbgzkm