FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 20, 2020

Contact: Communications Office
573-751-1010
communications@dnr.mo.gov

Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and U.S. Forest Service Release Draft Restoration Plans and Environmental Assessments

Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and U.S. Forest Service Release Draft Restoration Plans and Environmental Assessments

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Forest Service, acting as trustees for Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration process, are seeking public input on draft restoration plans and environmental assessments for proposed restoration projects in two locations. Both projects are focused on restoring natural resources, including lost habitat, as a result of high concentrations of lead released from lead and zinc mining, milling and smelting facilities located in the Viburnum Trend Mining District of Southeast Missouri (Viburnum Trend) and in Herculaneum, Jefferson County, Missouri.

The trustees invite the public to learn about the plans during two informational public meetings:

Monday, March 2 from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Viburnum City Hall, 1 Missouri Ave. in Viburnum
Tuesday, March 3 from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Herculaneum City Hall, 1 Parkwood Ct. in Herculaneum

The Viburnum Trend is an active mining district within the Southeast Missouri Lead Mining District comprising 10 mines and related facilities centered in Reynolds and Iron counties. Historically, material mined in the Viburnum Trend was processed at the Buick and Glover smelters. Mining in the Viburnum Trend is ongoing and the district remains a major producer of heavy metals, including lead and zinc.

The Herculaneum Lead Smelter facility is a former smelter located in Herculaneum, adjacent to the confluence of the Mississippi River and Joachim Creek. The smelter continuously operated as a primary lead smelter from 1882 until 2013.

The trustees assessed contaminant-related injuries to natural resources, including surface water, sediment, aquatic organisms and migratory birds as part of the two restoration projects. The ultimate goal of the natural resource restoration process is to restore, replace, rehabilitate or acquire the equivalent of injured natural resources and resource services that have been lost due to the release of hazardous substances.    

Public participation is an important part of the natural resource restoration process and public comments on the draft restoration plans and environmental assessments are invite. Public comments will be accepted for 45 days following publication in the Federal Register. After the comment period closes, the trustees will review the comments and make changes as necessary. The draft restoration plan will be available for review online begining Feb. 20, 2020, at http://www.fws.gov/midwest/es/ec/nrda/SEMONRDA/index.html.

For more information on the draft restoration plan, or to sign up for updates, visit http://dnr.mo.gov/env/hwp/sfund/nrda.htm. For more information about the public meeting, contact Eric Gramlich or Hillary Wakefield at 573-751-3176 or missouriNRD@dnr.mo.gov.

People requiring special services or accommodations to attend the meeting can make arrangements by calling the department’s Environmental Remediation Program at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-3176. Hearing-impaired individuals may contact the program through Relay Missouri at 800-735-2966.

 

###