Buffalo Reef Meeting in Lake Linden

Image source: michigan.gov

The Buffalo Reef Task Force has scheduled a meeting in Lake Linden later this month to discuss with the public three alternatives tentatively selected for further analysis in the fight to save this important natural reef off the Keweenaw Peninsula.

The meeting will take place on July 31 at the Lake Linden-Hubbell High School, located at 601 Calumet Avenue in Lake Linden.

In February, the task force issued an alternatives analysis which briefly described 13 strategies for managing historic copper mine tailings threatening to destroy spawning habitat and recruitment areas important to Lake Superior whitefish and lake trout in and around Buffalo Reef.

Mine tailings, called stamp sands, were dumped a century ago into Lake Superior at Gay, Michigan, during processing of copper ores from the Mohawk and Wolverine mines. Since that time, the sands have moved south along the shoreline with wave action toward the reef.

Earlier this year, the task force sought public comment on whether there were additional management strategies the group should consider and whether any adjustments should be made to the management strategies or risks described in the draft analysis.

In May, the task force released a responsiveness summary to public comments on the analysis of the alternatives.

On June 20, the task force met to review the 13 alternatives and hone the finalists down to three options that will be fleshed out further in the weeks ahead with specific costs and feasibility.

These three alternatives include:

  • Maintenance dredging at the Grand Traverse Harbor and an underwater trough area, with a stone revetment built to retain the stamp sands;
  • Dredging the entire area with disposal of the stamp sands in a newly constructed landfill to be located nearby;
  • Dredging 15 million cubic yards of stamp sands with disposal in the White Pine Mine tailings basin in Ontonagon County.

“At the public meeting, we will discuss the selection process, request public input on the choice of the three finalist alternatives and on moving forward with these choices for full review and development,” said Stephanie Swart, a Buffalo Reef Task Force Steering Committee member and Lake Superior coordinator with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. “We will also provide the public with an update on this summer’s dredging work.”

Maintenance dredging has been ongoing this summer in the harbor and the trough area to buy time to develop a long-term solution to the stamp sands issue.

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3rd International Congress Hydraulic Engineering Structures and Dredging

Russia’s leading maritime industry Media Group PortNews (www.portnews.ru) holds a traditional annual Congress “Hydraulic Engineering Structures and Dredging” in Moscow. 

The two-day Congress includes the 7th International Forum of Dredging Companies and the 3rd Technical Conference “Modern Solutions for Hydraulic Engineering”.

Infrastructure development is among the real sources of Russia’s economy growth. Construction of port facilities and new hydraulic engineering structures on the country’s inland waterways constitute an essential part of all infrastructure projects. It is important to take into account the best international practices to implement these projects effectively.

The program of the Congress will be devoted to the latest technologies for dredging and hydraulic engineering works. Speakers and delegates will refer to real projects to discuss specifics features of dredging works, as well as dedicated fleet and equipment involved.

To learn more about event, please, contact the organizing committee: snitko@portnews.ru

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