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Effects of effluents from a coal-fired, electric-generating powerplant on local ground water near Hayden, Colorado

Open-File Report 81-1196

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Abstract

Data were collected at the Hayden, Colo., powerplant for about a year during 1978-79 to monitor the effects of effluent and raw-water storage ponds on the local ground water, Sage Creek, and the Yampa River. The concentration of boron in wells downgradient from the effluent ponds indicated that the ponds were leaking, increasing the average boron concentrations in the ground water to a level in excess of the standards for agricultural use of water. Water from seeps, probably the best indicators of downgradient water quality, had average concentrations of boron two times that of the Colorado Department of Health (1977) standard for agricultural use of water. Chemical analyses of water from wells and the discharge weir downgradient from the raw-water storage ponds indicated these ponds are leaking. The effect of this leakage is that the water in wells downgradient from these ponds has a lower specific conductance and a lower boron concentration than the water in wells downgradient from the effluent ponds. The concentration of trace elements in the water from the wells and the discharge weir generally declined during the study, probably because the ground water was recovering from the effects of a plume from the raw-water pond previously used for fly-ash disposal. The effluents from the Hayden powerplant lowered the specific conductance and the iron and manganese concentrations, increased the concentration of boron, and had little or no effect on the selenium concentration in Sage Creek. Sage Creek had no discernible effect on the Yampa River because the volume of water in the Yampa River was so much greater. The effluents from the powerplant also had no discernible effect on the Yampa River. (USGS)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Effects of effluents from a coal-fired, electric-generating powerplant on local ground water near Hayden, Colorado
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
81-1196
Edition:
WRI/OFR
Year Published:
1981
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey,
Description:
v, 153 p. :ill., 8 maps ;30 cm.