Shamokin Creek Restoration Alliance SCRA

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Home Projects Weirs

Weirs

The Shamokin Creek Restoration Alliance uses weirs to monitor water flow from abandoned mine discharge sites. Knowing what high, low and base flows are allow us to determine parameters for treatment. Some discharges within the watershed are too large to be treated with passive systems like the settling ponds at sites 15, 42 and 48. A high volume of water would require the ponds to be as big as football fields. These discharges have to be treated using an active system. Active systems can be costly to build and maintain. Partnerships with local businesses and making the water available for industrial uses is one way to offset the cost of maintenance and allow for more water to be treated.

 

Site 49 (Sterling Discharge), SR 125 south of Shamokin, discharges to Carbon Run

Sites 23-27, Shamokin Street, Shamokin

Site 12, near Excelsior, the largest discharge to Shamokin Creek in the watershed

Site 21, in Ranshaw, discharges to Carbon Run

US Geological Survey gaging station, Tharpetown

 

Site 19, Rte 61 outside Kulpmont, near billboard

Site 20, Rte 61 outside Kulpmont

 

Site 49

Site 49 is one of the most photogenic sites in our watershed. Its classic looking mine open opening was actually an air ventilation shaft. It is the 3rd highest metal contributor with high levels of Iron (Fe) and Manganese (Mn), and moderate levels of Aluminum (Al).

 

Sites 23 – 27

Site 23 has very high levels of Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn) and Aluminum (Al). Typically there is a high combined volume of water flowing from sites 23 – 27. However, the amount of water coming out of each individual discharge is variable and not well understood. SCRA maintains and monitors chemistry and flow volume at 4 different discharge sites, each with it’s own weir.

 

Site 12

Site 12 is the 2nd highest metals contributor to the watershed. Water from Site 12 comes from a stripping pit and flows almost directly into the creek. Though the water seen in the pictures below looks beautifully blue the color is actually a sign of pollution.

 

Site 19

Site 19 contributes the most metals from Abandoned Mine Drainage (AMD) to the Shamokin Creek Watershed. Because of the high volume of water and the layout of the site traditional passive treatment would be difficult, requiring almost 20 acres of land. SCRA monitors water flow and chemistry at Site 19 and hopes to engage in partnerships that will allow for active treatment of the water.

 

Site 20

Site 20 is in close proximity to Site 19 and the water has many of the same characteristics. SCRA monitors flow and chemistry here in the hope that this water can be treated with the same system used to treat Site 19. Site 20 is unique in that it also has algae growing in it near the discharge point.

 

USGS, United States Geological Survey, Gauging Station

The Gauging Station, located near the Wayside Inn outside of Shamokin, has been monitoring the water flow of Shamokin Creek for many years. Historical methods plotting lines on paper have been updated to using a digital transducer and the data record is very good. SCRA also tests the water chemistry of Shamokin Creek here as it’s downstream of the city of Shamokin and most of the large pollutant contributors.

 

Site 21

Site 21 does not have a weir. However, SCRA has measured water flow down a borehole put in place to keep the water from flooding basements in Ranshaw. Currently we do not monitor flow here as accuracy and validity of the measurements has been called into question. We do measure the water chemistry semi annually.