Chad Milligan, P.G. of SCS Engineers is presenting a holistic approach to water quality treatment at mines.
About the Presentation:
Disposal of produced fluids from industrial processes is becoming more challenging with time. Options such as surface discharge through NPDES or trucking can be cost prohibitive, requiring an evaluation of alternative methods such as disposal via deep will injection.
Such problems have arisen for three coal mines in Illinois. Two of the mines generate high chloride native groundwater that infiltrates the mine and is then pumped to surface retention ponds prior to treatment and disposal. The third mine generates fluids from multiple sources including a coal fire power generating plant and a coal combustion residual landfill. These fluids will be also stored in surface retention ponds prior to treatment and disposal.
An evaluation was performed of the treatment and disposal of native groundwater infiltrating the mines using a holistic approach. The approach includes an evaluation of the water quality by assessing the chemical and physical characteristics of water, water quantities, water treatment system, geochemistry, and applicable disposal well characteristics. Current evaluations have identified specific minerals that may be precipitating within the disposal well diminishing well capacity and biological fouling originating within the mine itself that has substantially increased pretreatment filtering costs.
The treatment and disposal of produced powered generating fluids has introduced a new level of review by not only including the general physical and chemical characteristics of water treatment, but also the review and evaluation of the plant-wide water budget identifying the source of fluids within the plant, and also a thorough characterization and review of solid waste regulations such as the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.
This presentation will compare the source and treatment options of the produced waters from these three coal mines.
About Chad Milligan
Chad Milligan is a licensed professional geologist in the states of Kansas, Louisiana, and Illinois. He has a Bachelors degree in Environmental Chemistry from Emporia State University and a Master’s degree in Environmental Science from Wichita State University. Chad is responsible for the permitting and regulatory compliance of Class I and Class II disposal wells, Class III salt solution mining wells, LPG storage caverns, and Class V cavern stabilization wells.