Case study:Barney Beck: Abandoned Metal Mines

From RESTORE
Jump to: navigation, search
0.00
(0 votes)


To discuss or comment on this case study, please use the discussion page.


Location: 54° 23' 11", -1° 58' 29"
Edit location
Loading map...
Left click to look around in the map, and use the wheel of your mouse to zoom in and out.


Project overview

Edit project overview
Status In progress
Project web site
Themes Environmental flows and water resources, Habitat and biodiversity, Monitoring, Water quality
Country England
Main contact forename Hugh
Main contact surname Potter
Main contact user ID
Contact organisation Environment Agency
Contact organisation web site
Partner organisations The Coal Authority (UK)
Parent multi-site project
This is a parent project
encompassing the following
projects
No
Barney Beck with steep spoil tips at Old Gang

Project summary

Edit project overview to modify the project summary.


Barney Beck, in the Humber River Basin District, is located to the west of Richmond, North Yorkshire in upper Swaledale.The area was mined for lead, zinc and barium between 1700 and 1900. Cadmium occurs as a significant impurity in the lead-zinc minerals. The mineralisation occurs along vertical faults in the Carboniferous Limestone and Millstone Grit rocks at Barney Beck and adjoining areas of Swaledale in Yorkshire, and forms part of the North Pennine Orefield.

There is an extensive legacy of metal mining at Barney Beck including many shafts, adits and drainage levels with several smelters and associated ore dressing floors. There are large areas of un-vegetated spoil and bare rock exposed in deep hushes. Some spoil tips, such as at Old Gang Smelt Mill, have steep unstable slopes that are being constantly eroded at the base by Barney Beck. Barney Beck catchment (17sq.km) is entirely within the Yorkshire Dales National Park and almost all of the catchment is co-designated as SSSI, SAC and SPA with some scheduled Ancient Woodland in the valley bottom above Healaugh village. All of the mine site buildings are derelict, but there are 2 Scheduled Ancient Monuments comprising the Old Gang Smelt Mill and Surrender Smelt Mill complexes. Barras End Lead Mine is listed on the MINING WASTE DIRECTIVE INVENTORY.

There are 13 adits/levels identified in the catchment, and 2 of these, Hard Level and Spence Level, were purposely constructed as drainage levels and still have permanent discharge flows, with water containing high concentrations of lead, zinc and cadmium entering Barney Beck.

A number of single sampling events to investigate metal pollution of Barney Beck and to establish the Mining Waste Directive inventory were carried out by the Environment Agency and Hull University in 2010 and 2011. These studies all showed concentrations of Pb, Zn and Cd above their respective EQS values of 7.2, 50, and 0.09ug/L (Zn and Cd are hardness based), while Cu, Fe and Mn concentrations were acceptable. Based on the above findings, a catchment characterisation programme was implemented in 2012-2013 using Defra funding, provided to investigate water pollution from abandoned metal mines. This project comprised monthly water quality sampling at 9 locations with simultaneous spot flow gauging at 6 locations including the Hard Level and Spence Level discharges. The water quality results showed that the discharge from Hard Level contained the highest metal concentrations, with Pb at 130ug/L; Zn at 530ug/L and Cd at 4ug/L

Metal loading was calculated from the concentration and flow data. When metal loadings were examined under different flow conditions, the contribution from the point source adit discharges were more significant during low flows, but less so in high flow conditions, when diffuse sources from spoil tips and re-suspension of contaminated sediments become more significant in the overall metal loading to Barney Beck and entering the River Swale.

The Environment Agency has collaborated with the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority and funded a heritage survey report, to look at options for remediation and reduction of metal pollution of Barney Beck that do not adversely affect the integrity of the Scheduled Ancient Monuments.

Overview of the impact of metal mining at Barney Beck:  Length of watercourse affected 7km to confluence with River Swale  Average flow at the Swale confluence 110L/s  Average metal concentrations (ug/L): Pb = 80 Zn = 130 Cd = 1.1  Average metal loading (kg/year): Pb = 500 Zn = 700 Cd = 6  Water body WFD status in 2009: Ecology = Good Chemistry = DNRA

Benefits of remediation  The River Swale will be protected from major metal pollution sources  Scheduled Ancient Monuments will not be damaged by any remedial actions  Developing partnerships with important stakeholders (YDNPA and Coal Authority) and using our position as an influential advisor to deliver shared environmental outcomes  Contribute towards achieving Good Ecological and Chemical Status under WFD

Monitoring surveys and results

Edit project overview to modify the Monitoring survey and results.


An ecological monitoring programme was also undertaken to complement the water quality study and investigate the effects of metal pollution on macrophytes, invertebrates and diatoms. The ecological surveys were carried out in 3 seasonal sampling events over 2 years. Preliminary results show little adverse effects on invertebrates and macrophytes, but distortion of diatom valves in some species.

Lessons learnt

This case study hasn’t got any lessons learnt, you can add some by editing the project overview.


Image gallery


ShowHideAdditionalImage.png


Catchment and subcatchment

Catchment

River basin district Humber
River basin Swale, Ure, Nidd and Upper Ouse

Subcatchment

River name Barney Bk/Hard Level Gill from Source to R Swale
Area category 10 - 100 km²
Area (km2)
Maximum altitude category 500 - 1000 m
Maximum altitude (m) 589
589 m
0.589 km
58,900 cm
Dominant geology Calcareous
Ecoregion Great Britain
Dominant land cover Bog
Waterbody ID GB104027069080



Site

Name
WFD water body codes GB104027069080
WFD (national) typology
WFD water body name Barney Bk/Hard Level Gill from Source to R Swale
Pre-project morphology
Reference morphology
Desired post project morphology
Heavily modified water body No
National/international site designation
Local/regional site designations
Protected species present No
Invasive species present No
Species of interest
Dominant hydrology
Dominant substrate
River corridor land use
Average bankfull channel width category
Average bankfull channel width (m)
Average bankfull channel depth category
Average bankfull channel depth (m)
Mean discharge category
Mean annual discharge (m3/s)
Average channel gradient category
Average channel gradient
Average unit stream power (W/m2)


Project background

Reach length directly affected (m) 7km
7,000 m
700,000 cm
Project started 2012/13
"2012/13" contains a sequence that could not be interpreted against an available match matrix for date components.
Works started
Works completed
Project completed
Total cost category
Total cost (k€)
Benefit to cost ratio
Funding sources

Cost for project phases

Phase cost category cost exact (k€) Lead organisation Contact forename Contact surname
Investigation and design
Stakeholder engagement and communication
Works and works supervision
Post-project management and maintenance
Monitoring



Reasons for river restoration

Mitigation of a pressure Pollution incident, Mine drainage metal concentrations, Old metal mines with exposed rock and unstable slopes being eroded
Hydromorphology
Biology
Physico-chemical Nutrient concentrations
Other reasons for the project Contribute towards achieving Good Ecological and Chemical Status under WFD


Measures

Structural measures
Bank/bed modifications
Floodplain / River corridor
Planform / Channel pattern
Other
Non-structural measures
Management interventions Catchment Characterisation Programme to investigate water pollution from abandoned metal mines and determine remediation options of metal pollution
Social measures (incl. engagement) Developing partnerships with stakeholders, deliver shared environmental outcomes
Other Sampling to investigate metal pollution, Improving water quality


Monitoring

Hydromorphological quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Biological quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Physico-chemical quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Any other monitoring, e.g. social, economic

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative


Monitoring documents



Additional documents and videos


Additional links and references

Link Description

Supplementary Information

Edit Supplementary Information