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Impact of AMD on water quality in critical watershed in the Hudson River drainage basin: Phillips Mine, Hudson Highlands, New York

Environmental Geology

By:
, , , and
DOI: 10.1007/s00254-008-1310-4

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Abstract

A sulfur and trace element enriched U-Th-laced tailings pile at the abandoned Phillips Mine in Garrison, New York, releases acid mine drainage (AMD, generally pH < 3, minimum pH 1.78) into the first-order Copper Mine Brook (CMB) that drains into the Hudson River. The pyrrhotite-rich Phillips Mine is located in the Highlands region, a critical water source for the New York metro area. A conceptual model for derivation/dissolution, sequestration, transport and dilution of contaminants is proposed. The acidic water interacts with the tailings, leaching and dissolving the trace metals. AMD evaporation during dry periods concentrates solid phase trace metals and sulfate, forming melanterite (FeSO4???7H2O) on sulfide-rich tailings surfaces. Wet periods dissolve these concentrates/precipitates, releasing stored acidity and trace metals into the CMB. Sediments along CMB are enriched in iron hydroxides which act as sinks for metals, indicating progressive sequestration that correlates with dilution and sharp rise in pH when mine water mixes with tributaries. Seasonal variations in metal concentrations were partly attributable to dissolution of the efflorescent salts with their sorbed metals and additional metals from surging acidic seepage induced by precipitation. ?? 2008 Springer-Verlag.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Impact of AMD on water quality in critical watershed in the Hudson River drainage basin: Phillips Mine, Hudson Highlands, New York
Series title:
Environmental Geology
DOI:
10.1007/s00254-008-1310-4
Volume
57
Issue:
2
Year Published:
2009
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Environmental Geology
First page:
397
Last page:
409