Bunker Hill - Bunker Hill A superfund is a government program tasked with the clean up of contaminated sites due to poorly managed hazardous

Bunker Hill - Bunker Hill A superfund is a government...

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Bunker HillA superfund is a government program tasked with the clean up of contaminated sites due to poorly managed hazardous waste (“What is a Superfund, 2018). These sites exist all across theU.S. and are results of a variety of big business including mining operations and other manufacturing plants. In this essay, we will be focusing on the cleanup of a site referred to as Bunker Hill, an old mining operation located in Northern Idaho. Let’s begin by discussing the geology in Northern Idaho which will, in turn, give us a better understanding of the area containing Bunker Hill. Much of the rock in Northern Idaho is referred to as Belt rock, made up of thick sedimentary rock. Geologists believe that this Belt rockdeveloped over 550 million years ago during the Proterozoic period. Within the sedimentary rock, multiple igneous intrusions have created sills largely consisting of the rock Diabase. This mixture of sedimentary, igneous, and later metamorphic rock compose much of the formations located around Northern Idaho (Alt, 1999). Now that we’ve gone over some of the geology of Northern Idaho lets take an even closer look at the area containing Bunker Hill. As far as structural geology Bunker Hill is located at the intersection of the Osborne Fault and a large anticlinal uplift known as the Noxon Arch. This area is referred to as the Couer d’Alene district and contains faults of all different ages and movements. Some of the faults in this area include but are not limited to strike-slip faults, normal faults and reverse faults (Mitchell, 2006). Having an understanding of these faults and the surrounding structural geology is crucial as it will help us understand the origin of many of the substances extracted. But before we discuss the origin of these substances at the Bunker Hill site we need to go over what’s being extracted in the first place.
Bunker Hill is home to a wide assortment of mineral deposits but the primary substances being extracted are silver, lead, and zinc (Long, 2005). Silver is one of the more recognizable precious metals and is often used for things like jewelry, coins, silverware, and batteries. While its possible to find silver in its natural state it is in most cases mined as an ore of copper, nickel, lead, or zinc. Pure silver is formed from hydrothermal processes within the earth while silver as an ore can be formed from the breakdown of the previously named materials copper, lead, zinc (“Silver”, 2018). The second major substance mined at Bunker Hill is lead, another common substance, lead is used for a variety of things including car batteries and ammunition. It makes sense that lead is present here as it is found within Galena one of the most abundant minerals in the region. Galena is commonly found in sedimentary rocks like the Belt rock found all across

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