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Effect of activities at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory on the water quality of the Snake River Plain aquifer in the Magic Valley study

Fact Sheet 052-98

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Abstract

Radiochemical and chemical constituents in wastewater generated at facilities of the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) (figure 1) have been discharged to waste-disposal ponds and wells since the early 1950 s. Public concern has been expressed that some of these constituents could migrate through the Snake River Plain aquifer to the Snake River in the Twin Falls-Hagerman area Because of these concerns the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) requested that the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conduct three studies to gain a greater understanding of the chemical quality of water in the aquifer. One study described a one-time sampling effort for radionuclides, trace elements, and organic compounds in the eastern part of the A&B Irrigation District in Minidoka County (Mann and Knobel, 1990). Another ongoing study involves sampling for tritium from 19 springs on the north side of the Snake River in the Twin Falls-Hagerman area (Mann, 1989; Mann and Low, 1994). A third study an ongoing annual sampling effort in the area between the southern boundary of the INEEL and Hagerman (figure 1) (hereafter referred to as the Magic Valley study area), is being conducted with the Idaho Department of Water Resources in cooperation with the DOE. Data for a variety of radiochemical and chemical constituents from this study have been published by Wegner and Campbell (1991); Bartholomay, Edwards, and Campbell (1992, 1993, 1994a, 1994b); and Bartholomay, Williams, and Campbell (1995, 1996, 1997b). Data discussed in this fact sheet were taken from these reports. An evaluation of data collected during the first four years of this study (Bartholomay Williams, and Campbell, 1997a) showed no pattern of water-quality change for radionuclide data as concentrations randomly increased or decreased. The inorganic constituent data showed no statistical change between sample rounds.

Geospatial Extents

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Effect of activities at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory on the water quality of the Snake River Plain aquifer in the Magic Valley study
Series title:
Fact Sheet
Series number:
052-98
Year Published:
1998
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Description:
4 p.
Number of Pages:
4
Country:
United States
State:
Idaho
Other Geospatial:
Snake River Plain