Esf Ws Scraggy Monitoring Program 091024

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  • 1. Community-based water quality monitoring of Scraggy Lake
    • Dan Hutt
    • Eastern Shore Forest Watch
    • Oct. 24, 2009
  • 2. Scraggy Lake
    • A major lake on Nova Scotia’s Eastern Shore
    • 7 km long by 5 km wide
    • very shallow (less than 10 m)
    • 2 nd largest lake in Fish River water watershed after Lake Charlotte
  • 3.
    • Proponent: DDV Gold
    • Touquoy Gold Deposit
    • 500,000 oz deposit
    • low-grade ore
    • 5-7 year project
    • On-site processing
    • Cyanidation process
    • Tailings facility
    • Effluent flows into Scraggy Lake
    Proposed open-pit gold mine North tip of Scraggy Lake
  • 4. Threats posed by gold mine to Scraggy Lake and Fish River
    • Excavation will release highly soluable arsenic.
    • Also metals such as copper, lead, zinc, nickel
    • Residual cyanide from processing plant
    • Hundreds of thousands of kilograms of nitrate are expected to be released by breakdown of cyanide, leading to eutrophication .
    • oxidation of sulphide minerals associated with mine tailings could drastically lower pH which could activate normally benign metals.
  • 5. Community-Based Environmental Monitoring for Scraggy Lake
    • Create a database of water quality measurements
    • Obtain baseline data before gold mine begins
    • Maintain monitoring after mine in operation
    • Pressure NS government to do its own monitoring
    • Let DDV Gold know that the community is watching
  • 6. Water quality monitoring plan
    • Proposed by Matt Coady, Kendrick Ball and Patricia Egli
    • Four sampling sites proposed
    • Seasonal measurements
    • Chemical analysis for surface water
    • pH, conductivity and temperature at several depths
    • Turbidity measurement (Secchi)
    • Four field trips done so far - Nov. 08, Feb. 09, May 09 & Aug 09
    • Experience shows only 3 sites can be sampled in one day
  • 7. Scraggy Lake sampling sites
  • 8. Instrumentation
    • Laboratory chemical analysis
    • YSI 650 water quality probe
    • Secchi disk
    • GPS
    • Photography
    • (YSI and Secchi provided by Community Based Environmental Monitoring Network, Saint Mary's University)
  • 9. What is measured?
    • Water chemical analysis is "ICP" (Inductively Coupled Plasma) plus separate analysis for nitrate, mercury.
  • 10. What is measured?
    • Water quality with YSI 600QS probe
      • Temperature
      • Conductivity
      • Dissolved oxygen
      • pH
  • 11. Cost and funding
    • Cost
    • Labour: 12-hour days for two people
    • Equipment: Car, GPS, laptop, canoe, ice auger, camera
    • Water chemical analysis, $141.25/sample
    • Instrumentation: YSI probe borrowed from St. Mary's
    • Funding
    • Halifax Regional Municipality?
    • Nova Scotia Public Interest Research Group "Dedicated to research, education, and action on issues of social and environmental justice"
    • Other ideas?
  • 12. Looking ahead
    • Need expert review of results to put them into context
    • Need to find a way to measure cyanide concentration
    • Make data available on-line
    • Publicize campaign
    • Find funding