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Mercury Contamination from Historic Gold Mining in California

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Mercury Contamination from Historic Gold Mining in California; 2000; FS; 061-00; Alpers, Charles N.; Hunerlach, Michael P.

Summary

Mercury contamination from historic gold mines represents a potential risk to human health and the environment. This fact sheet provides background information on the use of mercury in historic gold mining and processing operations in California, and describes a new USGS project that addresses the potential risks associated with mercury from these sources, with emphasis on historic hydraulic mining areas. Miners used mercury (quicksilver) to recover gold throughout the western United States at both placer (alluvial) and hardrock (lode) mines. The vast majority of mercury lost to the environment in California was from placer-goldmines, which used hydraulic, drift, and dredging methods. At hydraulic mines, placer ores were broken down [...]

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Type Scheme Key
local-index unknown fs06100
local-pk unknown 5226
doi http://www.loc.gov/standards/mods/mods-outline-3-5.html#identifier doi:10.3133/fs06100
series unknown Fact Sheet

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journalFact Sheet
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languageENGLISH
citationTypeReport

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