E-mail: savethetygartwatershed@gmail.com     -      Phone: 304-363-7338

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Three Fork Creek and the Tygart River May Be

Facing A New Threat of Acid Mine Drainage

Photos were made available by the WV DEP

Save The Tygart Watershed Association is a local, non-profit organization dedicated to improving the Tygart River and its tributaries.  Three Fork Creek, which begins in Preston County and enters the Tygart River at Grafton, is now alive again with aquatic life due to facilities constructed by the WV Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) to treat acid mine drainage.   With new treatment facilities going on-line this year, we hope for similar results on Little Sandy Creek, which also begins in Preston County and flows directly into Tygart Lake.    These facilities cost millions of federal and state dollars to build and maintain.  They are necessary due to abusive coal mining practices which started in the late 1800s.

These streams now face new threats.  Arch Coal’s Leer Mine near Grafton has proposed a permit revision which we believe will have major adverse impacts to water quality in both of these tributaries.

Photos were made available by the WV DEP

The revision proposes the creation of a gravity discharge of 3,465 gallons per minute of water from the deep mine works into Three Fork Creek.  This water is projected to have a high amount of iron and will require treatment for a total of 38 years before untreated water will meet water quality standards.  The specific conductance of the water will be at a level which the WVDEP rates as “a definite stressor”.    

 

 A previous revision protected Little Sandy Creek by limiting mining under it and its major tributaries.  In the proposed revision, these protections have been removed, and the company could subside the Creek and its tributaries, resulting in tremendous damage. 

 

The WVDEP will hold an informal conference at the Tygart Lake Lodge, Grafton, WV on December 18, 2019, from 2-6 PM.  We encourage anyone with an interest in water quality to attend.

 For Information Click Any Of The Links Below   
If you plan on attending the informal conference please let us know by emailing us at
savethetygartwatershed@gmail.com
 
Written comments can be submitted at the informal conference or by writing to:

West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection

ATTN:  Permit Supervisor

47 School Street, Suite 301

Philippi, WV  26416

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Save They Tygart Watershed