Converde Energy USA, Inc. Tuesday announced it has entered into a contract and partnered with the Eastern PA Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation to engage the Susquehanna River Basin Commission in a multi-phase study of the Mocanaqua Abandoned Mine Drainage Tunnel in Luzerne County.
This project, if successful, may lead to the supply of millions of gallons of treated mine influenced water during low flow conditions into the local watershed that feeds the Susquehanna River.
The Mocanaqua AMD Tunnel mine is believed to be a significant mine pool of isolated mine water. The mine pool size is thought to exceed 500 billion gallons of water. This static mine pool should be adequate to support the SRBC's criteria for an augmentation source.
The Mocanaqua Tunnel is the last major Northern Field discharge to impact the Susquehanna River. The tunnel drains the West End Basin Mine Pool and is the seventh highest acidity loading producer in the Susquehanna River Basin Anthracite Fields.
EPCAMR is currently digitizing, geo-referencing, and delineating underground mine pool boundaries for the Mocanaqua AMD Tunnel in Phase I of the project.
There are around 15 grid sections with an average of 6 coal veins to each grid to review and add elevation data for an estimated 90 mine maps from the Office of Surface Mining Folio Map Series.
The coal veins in the southern tip of the northern anthracite coalfields in the lower Wyoming Valley are the Baltimore Vein, Top and Bottom Ross, Top and Bottom Red Ash, and the Red Ash.
Data collected will be used to create a 3D model of the surface and underground mine pool complexes and multi-colliery hydrologic units within the project area to more accurately calculate the potential mine pool storage volume potential within the project area by EPCAMR.
Specific areas will then be drilled for more detailed in-situ mine pool monitoring of chemistry and elevation changes in the mine pool and at strategic surface monitoring locations within the Black Creek watershed and in several surface water-filled stripping pits.
Data collected, under an approved State Forest Research Agreement, will be used by EPCAMR, SRBC, and XFUL and the Department of Conservation & Natural Resources, who own the Pinchot State Forest.
"We are very excited to be working with EPCAMR's talented staff at their regional non-profit professional environmental organization, with over 20 years of experience in abandoned mines across Pennsylvania,” said Brad J. Domitrovitsch, Chairman & CEO. "The Executive Director, Robert E. Hughes, has made it possible for us to execute on our first augmentation project that we anticipate will prove out HCPA's conveyance methodologies."(Photo: Mocanaqua AMD Tunnel by Eastern PA Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation.)
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