Pollution issues at the Idaho Maryland Mine project
The issues discussed in this section relate to concerns about modern day mining practices. We understand that legacy mining techniques were even more questionable.
IMM claims it will release water of drinking water quality into Wolf Creek from its dewatering operations: even MODERN DAY mines using MODERN DAY standards have been found to release cyanide, arsenic, sulfate, lead, mercury, cadmium, copper, nickel and zinc. See more from a 2006 study on modern mine compliance with stated water pollution goals!
Wells were drained quickly and against all assurance in the Siscon Gold mine re-opening on the San Juan Ridge, just recently. Located about 27 km (17 miles) north of Nevada City, it was scheduled to become the largest underground gold mine in California. (see OneMine.org, "San Juan Ridge Gold Mine Begins Production", R. Pease, 1/1/1996) No one knows how many wells, both near and far, could be drained over time by dewatering at the Idaho Maryland site. (See "Special Report: Golden Gamble in Grass Valley, Part 3: Dewatering an Old Gold Mine" on Yubanet.com
GV City Council members pledged to work to reduce ozone in our air. IMM trucks will release hundreds of tons of NOx, and particulates, into our local airshed, thus substantially increasing the formation of ozone. Asthma will be worsened! Information on Air Pollution in general. Information on Pollution from Heavy Diesel Trucks
"...ore and development rock is planned to be crushed underground using a primary jaw crusher. The crushed material will then be transported to the surface and placed in surface stockpiles via conveyer. Material will then be drawn from the stockpiles and transported to the processing plant by conveyer." (pg. 3-5, Mineral Project Application, Mineral Exploration and/or Extraction Environmental Assessment, IMM)
" If the material is waste rock, it will be considered as sized ceramic feed material and will be conveyed to a series of storage silos adjacent to the ceramics plant" (pg. 3-6, ibid)
"Explosives and detonators will be required for drilling and blasting activities underground. These materials will be stored underground in a secured areas." Again, another set of hazardous materials that need to be stored separately and separately maintained.
Gold Processing / Hazardous Materials
Sodium cyanide (NaCN), a listed hazardous material will be transported to the site in either solid or aqeous form, either in "super sacks" or in tanker trucks.... Acids will need to be stored in a different place to minimize the formation of lethal hydrogen cyanide gas. For details on cyanide at IMM please see this link.
Other Hazardous Materials
Other hazardous materials to be used onsite include: