Some Effects Of Century Old Abandoned Lead Mining Operations On Streams In Missouri, USA


Lead has been mined in the Old Lead Belt region of southeastern Missouri, USA since the early 1700s. Mining operations ceased totally in 1972. Since no other major industries were associated with the region, an investigation was initiated to study the long-term environmental effects of lead mining activities on the water quality sediments and biota otarea receiving streams. The principal study area was Flat River Creek,. which drained the major mining operations of the region. The findings of this study indicated the water of the lower Flat River Creek below the mining elevation contained elevated levels of lead, zinc, calcium and magnesium. The sediments and biota of the same stream area were also found to contain significantly higher levels of lead and zinc as well as copper and cadmium. Algae, crayfish and minnows were all found to have concentrated these metals. The studies indicated that some type of abandonment plan must be developed for the control and treatment of heavy metal pollution for mining operations on a continuing basis. © 1981 Science and Technology Letters.


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

1573-2983; 0142-7245

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


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Publication Date

01 Mar 1981