The general hydrology of Area 14, Eastern Coal Province, in Kentucky, is described. The area includes 4,423 square miles in the Kentucky, Licking, and Red River basins. Coal-bearing rocks of Pennsylvanian age underlie most of the area. Coal production in 1978 was about 38 million tons, 65% of which was from surface mining. The drainage from the mined areas contains large amounts of dissolved solids. Sulfate, manganese, and iron concentrations in most of the area streams exceed background levels, with the higher concentrations in streams draining the headwaters of the North and Middle Forks of the Kentucky River. The pH of most of the streams is near neutral acid-mine drainage being partially neutralized close to its source. Ground waters in the upper 300 feet of the aquifers are generally suitable for most purposes, although dissolved iron is generally high. Below 300 feet, the water is saline. Yields to wells range from 1 to 325 gallons per minute. A network of 66 surface quantity and quality of water stations was implemented in 1979 in response to the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act of 1977. An intensive study of the ground water resources of the area is also in progress. (USGS)
Additional Publication Details
USGS Numbered Series
Hydrology of area 14, Eastern Coal Province, Kentucky
U.S. Geological Survey,
v, 112 p. :ill. (some col.), maps (some col.) ;28 cm.