Public Comment Requested for the Draft Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis: Abandoned Cherry Creek Mines

Prescott National Forest officials are requesting public comments and input for the Draft Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis (EE/CA) report for the abandoned Cherry Creek Mines (Site), located on the Verde Ranger District, near Cherry, Arizona, in Yavapai County. These former mines are the Bunker Mine, Golden Idol Mine, Black Hawk Mine, Uncle Sam Mine, Logan Mine, and Gold Eagle Mine.  These mines contain over 17,000 cubic yards of waste rock left from past mining operations.  All written comments are due by close of business,  January 30, 2021.

A draft EE/CA report was prepared to identify and evaluate cleanup alternatives to reduce the potential threat to human health and the environment from heavy metal contamination and the physical safety hazards posed by open mine adits and shafts.

The recommended cleanup alternative is excavation and on-site consolidation and disposal of waste rock material and physical closure of adits and shafts.  Waste rock material would be excavated and consolidated into engineered consolidation cells and capped with clean soil. This alternative will decrease the potential for human and ecological exposure to elevated concentrations of heavy metals and reduce physical safety hazards posed by the adits and shafts.

Following this comment period, a final decision will be made and the decision will be documented in a Removal Action Memorandum identifying the alternative selected for the cleanup of the Site.

Copies of the EE/CA and Administrative Record are available at the Verde Ranger District Office (300 East Highway 260; Camp Verde, AZ), and the Prescott Supervisors Office (735 N Hwy 89; Chino Valley, AZ).  The EE/CA is also available on the Prescott National Forest website at https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/prescott/landmanagement/resourcemanagement/?cid=fseprd859459

To review the EE/CA and the Administrative Record at the Verde Ranger District, please contact Frances Alvarado or Zakiya Shivji at (928) 443-8000 to make an appointment.

Send written comments via mail or email to:

Angelica Villa

USDA Regional Office

333 Broadway Blvd, SW

Albuquerque, NM 87102

angelica.villa@usda.gov   (please reference “Cherry Creek EE/CA” in the subject line).

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