ERM’s remediation management services were recognized at the 2017 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Environmental Awards.
ERM’s remediation management services helped our client, Homestake Mining, win the American Society of Civil Engineers’ (ASCE) Sacramento Section’s 2016 Outstanding Project of the Year award for the Sulphur Creek Mining District (SCMD) Waste Removal Project in California. The award is presented to projects that demonstrate how innovation improves the practice of environmental engineering. ERM’s work included advising on the removal of 22,000 cubic yards of mercury-impacted material that posed potential health risks through waterway contamination.
The SCMD site is located in located in a historical mining district in Colusa County, California and was once used to mine mercury for use in gold extraction. After active mercury mining ceased, mine site runoff into nearby waterways was creating an accumulation of contaminants in the ecosystem, which posed potential impacts to fish and human health.
ERM’s workplan to address these water concerns included the development and implementation of integrated Stormwater Pollution Prevention and Construction Quality Assurance Plans. Using Best Management Practices, some of the innovative work included in-place stabilization such as straw mats, hydroseeding using local vegetation seed mixes, erosion control blankets and rip-rap barriers. By leveraging drone technology, the ERM project team was able to efficiently and safely capture data and provide ongoing monitoring and risk management services on a site that presented challenging topographies.
The Homestake Mine was just one of thousands of unsafe and abandoned mines that require effective closure and reintegration of the site into the environment. “By using more innovative methodologies such as developing sound closure goals and implementing decontamination and demolition programs especially around water management issues, we can enable our clients to act quicker, better, faster and cheaper to repurpose the land and make it usable for future generations,” says Louise Pearce, Global Mining Lead at ERM.