By Nick Cato, Shahid Mahmud
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Additional info for Abandoned Mine Site Characterization and Cleanup Handbook
Prior to the l970's, recovery of heavy metal particulates, such as zinc and lead, was not required from smelter stacks. Instead, tons of metal particulates were emitted directly from the stack into the atmosphere. The lead and zinc plant stacks historically used baghouses and electrostatic precipators to capture particulates for recovery of valuable metals. Because of a fire and subsequent problems with the baghouses, the plant continued to emit these particulates during the early-to-mid 1970's.
Modifications to the above “regulatory processes” take considerable effort and are timeconsuming. While these regulatory processes will need to be engaged to varying degrees, these are probably not the most efficient or productive forums through which Federal and State agencies and local governments should work to make the strategic environmental response priorities and decisions for the universe of abandoned mine sites at watershed and drainagebasin levels. As mentioned earlier, collaborative watershed partnerships are more likely to be an effective sounding board for determining the values and choices which will focus abandoned mine site efforts.
Generally, one-to-one and small group discussions work best in small mining communities. While it is vital to work with local elected officials, it is also important to identify and communicate through the community's informal networks using unofficial community caretakers and opinion-makers. It takes time to identify the networks and the caretakers that are at their hub, but communicating through these sources is often more effective than through more formal efforts. Pay Special Attention to Historic Preservation Concerns.
Abandoned Mine Site Characterization and Cleanup Handbook by Nick Cato, Shahid Mahmud