Tag Archives: hydrology

Full page ad by titanium miners in Charlton County Herald 2019-09-25

It’s the miners who are proposing to risk the Okefenokee Swamp for their private profit, so it’s their job to provide proof, despite what the Twin Pines full page ad in the Charlton County Herald says. Alex Kearns has already made this point for St. Marys Earthkeepers in a letter to the editor. You can comment on the newspaper’s website on that one, or you can send one, too, to: editor@charltonherald.com.

[CharltonCounty-Herald 25Sept2019-0001]
CharltonCounty-Herald 25Sept2019-0001
PDF

Yet in our Suwannee Riverkeeper comments to the Corps, we have provided quite a few studies that indicate the risk, including a Florida Consent Order against the same company for similar mines in Florida.

Where are these studies Twin Pines touts in the ad? They were not in Twin Pines’ mining application, as we and many others, including U.S. EPA and GA-EPD have pointed out. When will these miners’ studies be published?

The one Twin Pines hydrogeological study I have been able to find is in a different application that this miners’ ad doesn’t mention: for groundwater withdrawal and use. That study shows the 4.32 million gallons per day the miners’ want (more than twice all the current permitted water withdrawals in Charlton County) would lower the level of the Floridan Aquifer under the Swamp.

[Figure 8. Drawdown 2930 days]
Figure 8. Drawdown 2930 days

At the August 13, 2019 miners’ meeting in Folkston, GA, Steve Ingle claimed the mine would not affect the Floridan Aquifer, and the miners’ hydrologist Mark Tanner claimed there would be no cone of depression under the Swamp, both on video. This was two weeks after the same company had filed its withdrawal application with a hydrology report that clearly depicts a cone of depression extending under the Swamp. A report authored by the same two hydrologists who were at the August 13th meeting: Robert M. Holt and J. Mark Tanner.

The same miners’ hydrologists also repeatedly refused to guarantee there would be no effect on the Suwannee River, despite the ad’s claims of “100% certainty.”

Pretty much every other point in that ad is similarly easily rebuttable.

It’s curious they didn’t mention their biggest selling point: Continue reading

GA-EPD cites Suwannee Riverkeeper and US EPA against TPM titanium mine near Okefenokee Swamp 2019-09-12

GA-EPD told USACE the mining application is incomplete, asked for comments to be reopened, and cited Suwannee Riverkeeper and Georgia River Network:

“Understanding that groundwater hydrologic effects associated with the Twin Pines project have been a central concern expressed by federal resource/regulatory agencies, NGOs (e.g. the Suwannee Riverkeeper and Georgia River Network), and the public at large, we respectfully submit that the 404/401 permit application as submitted thus far is not complete since it lacks full information and findings regarding hydrogeologic factors on site and post-project effects to hydrogeology/groundwater. We feel that it is inappropriate and premature to close the project comment window when such notable elements of the environmental documentation for this project have not yet been made available. documentation which we at GaEPD judge to be important to our review of this project.”

[the 404/401 permit application as submitted thus far is not complete]
the 404/401 permit application as submitted thus far is not complete

This was revealed by USACE in a Public Notice of September 17, 2019. So far, this is the only update posted by the Corps since it closed comments on September 12, 2019.

It also includes comments by U.S. EPA, also saying the application is incomplete, and also cited by GA-EPD. EPA cites cumulative effects and notes numerous lacking documents and studies. EPA concludes:

“Due to the potential for the proposed Twin Pines Minerals mine to adversely affect the hydrology of the Okefenokee NWR, the EPA believes that there is the potential for this project as proposed to cause adverse effects to water quality and the life stages of aquatic life or other wildlife dependent on aquatic systems. The EPA finds that this project, as proposed, may result in substantial and unacceptable impacts to aquatic resources of national importance, as covered in Part IV. paragraph 3(a) of the August 1992 Memorandum of Agreement between the EPA and the Department of the Army regarding CWA Section 404(q).”

Apparently USACE is at least listening to the public and the public and NGOs such as Suwannee Riverkeeper.

You can still send in comments. The Corps won’t say they will read them, but they explicitly won’t say they won’t read them, so keep sending them in, and publish them on social media, as op-eds, etc. Continue reading

Same owners, DAPL and Sabal Trail

Update 2016-09-23: Not quite: Energy Transfer backed out of buying Williams Co..

DAPL and Sabal Trail: now part of the same pipeline companies.

DAPL owners Energy Transfer, Enbridge, own Williams and Spectra of Sabal Trail The pipeline companies behind the Sabal Trail fracked methane boondoogle through Alabama, Georgia, and Florida are now owned by the companies behind the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) that wants to pump oil through North Dakota where the Standing Rock Sioux have attracted an encampment of thousands of people who have successfully and nonviolently stopped pipeline construction at least for the moment. WWALS was one of 93 Waterkeeper organizations worldwide that co-signed a letter from Waterkeeper Alliance in support of the Standing Rock Sioux. Opponents of these pipelines, including native Americans in Florida and Georgia as well as North Dakota, are no longer just fighting the same industry: they’re fighting the same companies.

The pipeline companies behind DAPL are Continue reading

New hydrology report exposes Sabal Trail pipeline risk to Floridan Aquifer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Jasper, Florida, July 1st 2016 — Another independent professional geologist reveals more omissions and discrepancies in pipeline company reports and faults in federal oversight of the Sabal Trail pipeline: Figure 7: Locations of the caves and springs mentioned in this study groundflow actually goes the other way, drilling under a river will change water flow in the Floridan Aquifer, and there is very high risk of sinkhole collapse. An indigenous Floridian commissioned this scientific report to protect his mother, the living earth. This geological report provides compelling additional reasons for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to open a new process to evaluate this and other new information.

Bobby C. Billie, one of the Clan Leaders and Spiritual Leader, Council of the Original Miccosukee Simanolee Nation Aboriginal Peoples, asked professional geologist and hydrologist Peter Schreuder, P.G. to conduct investigations at the proposed Sabal Trail crossing under the Suwannee River from Hamilton County and under U.S. 90 in close proximity to the Falmouth Cave System in Suwannee County.

This Schreuder report concludes about the Floridan Aquifer System (FAS): Continue reading

Hydrogeologic Issues of Concern, HDD under Suwannee River –Peter J. Schreuder 2016-06-23

See press release, New hydrology report exposes Sabal Trail pipeline risk to Floridan Aquifer, and this report is also available in PDF.

Hydrogeologic Issues of Concern

Schreuder, Inc. Water-Resources & Environmental Consultants

Directional Horizontal Drilling (HDD) under the
Suwannee River
At Suwannee River State Park

Hydrogeologic Issues of Concern

In any review of potential environmental consequences related to the use of Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD), both the geotechnical and scientific communities can be expected to raise serious concerns when such drilling is done around karst areas, and in regions which over lie the Floridan Aquifer System (FAS), which includes the Upper Floridan Aquifer, and the karstic geologic subsurface features at the location proposed in Continue reading

Ordinance Prohibiting Fracking –Madison, FL BOCC 2016-04-27

Congratulations to Madison BOCC for this ordinance Madison passed unanimously last night (PDF):

ORDINANCE NO. 2016-______

Home rule, karst, and earthquakes AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MADISON COUNTY, FLORIDA, AMENDING THE MADISON COUNTY LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE TO PROHIBIT HIGH INTENSITY PETROLEUM OPERATIONS AND THE STORAGE AND/OR DISPOSAL OF HIGH INTENSITY PETROLEUM OPERATIONS WASTE; PROVIDING CERTAIN FINDINGS; AMENDING THE DEFINITIONS SECTION OF THE MADISON COUNTY LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE TO DEFINE CERTAIN TERMS WITH REGARD THERETO; CREATING SECTION 6.5 OF THE MADISON COUNTY LAND DEVELOPMENT CODE ENTITLED “REGULATIONS GOVERNING HIGH INTENSITY PETROLEUM OPERATIONS AND HIGH INTENSITY PETROLEUM OPERATIONS WASTE PRODUCTS”; PROVIDING FOR REPEAL OF CONFLICTING ORDINANCES; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; AND PROVIDING AN EFFECTIVE DATE.

WHEREAS, Continue reading