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United States Environmental Protection Agency
Identifying the Potential for Methylation of Mercury at Mining Sites
Sponsored by: U.S. EPA Technology Innovation and Field Services Division
Original Time/Date of Presentation:

March 29, 2016, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM, EDT (17:00-19:00 GMT)

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Presentation Overview:

This webinar presents two case studies that highlight the impacts of treatments and management strategies on mercury methylation and methylmercury release at mining sites. Methyl mercury (MeHg) is a toxic and bioavailable form of mercury. The first case study will document results of a mining-influenced waters treatability study conducted at the Formosa Mine Superfund site. One component of this investigation assessed the influence of sulfate-reducing bacteria on the production and release of MeHg during the treatment of mining-influenced water.  The results are being used to inform the design, application, and assessment of sulfate-reducing biochemical reactors. The second looks at the impact of water level fluctuation on sediment in the Cottage Grove Reservoir, located downstream from the former Black Butte mercury mine of the Black Butte Superfund site. Results suggest that exposure of sediments to air while water levels are lowered may replenish the supply of sulfate (and/or other electron acceptors) needed to stimulate microbial production of MeHg mercury when the reservoir level is raised.  

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