Geology and Public Policy Forum:

Reclamation in the Tri-state Lead-zinc Mining District: A Trans-boundary Effort

Monday: 3:45-5 PM

Cosponsored by GSA Geology and Public Policy Committee and
GSA Geology and Society Division.

Rex Buchanan,
Marcia Schulmeister,
David Drake, U.S. EPA Region 7
Gary Baumgarten, U.S. EPA Region 5
Rebecca Jim, Local Environmental Action Demanded
Cheryl Seeger, Missouri Division of Geology and Land Survey


The tri-state mining district encompasses approximately 2,500 square miles in southeastern Kansas, southwestern Missouri, and northeastern Oklahoma. A century of lead and zinc mining has generated over 300 miles of underground tunnels, 165 million tons of chat waste, and widespread contamination of ground-water, surface water, and soil. Millions of federal and state dollars have been spent to reclaim affected property and treat contaminated water and soil, and a significant amount of the work is yet to be completed. In this forum, invited panelists from two EPA regional offices, a state agency, and a local citizen action group will present the status of the project and discuss the trans-boundary issues and intra-agency collaboration and the challenges of public communication concerning a long-term and occasionally contentious clean-up process. Following short presentations by each speaker the panel will explore the complex physical and societal issues confronting the ongoing work. The forum will follow two-related theme sessions ("Ore Deposits of the Central U.S.: Origin, Mining, and "Environmental Remediation" and "The Tri-State Mining District, a Decades-Long Project: Progress, Challenges, and Revelations.”) and a pre-meeting field trip ("Route 66 - Geology and Legacy of Mining in the Tri-State District of Missouri, Kansas, and Oklahoma").


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