Acid Mine Drainage

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Transcript Acid Mine Drainage

Acid Mine Drainage

Visual Environmental Education Guide

The Problem

Basic definition: -The overflow of acidic water from abandoned coal mines (Websters Dictionary) Image from:

Examples of Acid Mine Drainage

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Overview of Chemical Reactions Occurring   Main chemical reaction: the oxidization of pyrite (FeS 2 ) The 3 main chemical products formed in acid mine drainage reactions are:  Ferrous iron and sulfuric acid  Ferric iron  Eventually turns into iron hydroxide

First Chemical Reaction: Oxidization of Pyrite

+2 FeS 2 + O 2 + H 2 O –> Fe + H 2 SO 4

or (pyrite + dissolved oxygen + water) -> (ferrous iron + sulfuric acid)

Second Chemical Reaction: Oxidization of Soluble Iron

+2 + +3 Fe + O 2 + H –> Fe + H 2 O

or (ferrous iron + oxygen +hydronium) -> (ferric iron + water)

Third Chemical Reaction: Precipitation of Insoluble Iron

+3 + Fe + H 2 O –> Fe(OH) 3 + H

or (ferric iron + water) -> (iron hydroxide + hydronium ) Image from:

The Importance of the pH of Water

  Water’s average pH is 7, which is basic Acid mine drainage can make water’s pH as low as 2.5 Image from:

Possible Forms of Treatment

1) 2)   Passive Treatment Artificial Wetland Construction Active Treatment Chemical additives  Limestone or carbonate neutralization Image from:

Mining Practices in the Susquehanna Valley Region Image from: /bmr/annualreport/2010/Photo_Coming_out_of_the_ mine.jpg

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Map of Rivers/Streams Affected by Acid Mine Drainage in Pennsylvania Image from:

Regional Treatment Programs

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The Shamokin Creek Story

Image from: http://farm4.staticflickr.com3591/3502701636_db54cf068f_z.jpg

The Shamokin Creek Watershed Map Image from:

Example of a Local Resource: Shamokin Creek Restoration Alliance Image from: 0SCRAnewHome/SCRAhome.htm

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