On Thursday December 10th, The Sierra Fund Science Director Dr. Carrie Monohan, along with members of the CA Department of Parks and Recreation and Central Valley Water Board staff, gave a collaborative presentation to the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board that was an overview of efforts to address ongoing mining impacts at Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park.
This informational presentation began with a summary of background information from the Regional Water Board’s Senior Engineering Geologist Marty Hartzell, who described how the historic hydraulic mining practices at this site continue to impact water quality today.
State Parks staff then spoke about the historic significance and state historic park classification and the need to collect additional information which would help guide the Department’s plans to address water quality flowing from the Malakoff Pit into Diggins Creek, while continuing to protect the significant cultural and natural resources at the Park. Parks has been working with The Sierra Fund, US Geological Survey, the Department of Conservation and CSU Chico to identify sources of funding and to continue necessary research and monitoring at the site. Current efforts include improving existing fencing of physical hazards, finishing the first phase of the cultural resources inventory, LiDAR mapping to assist with determining erosion rates, monitoring installed brush boxes and pit deposition rate, encouraging vegetation growth and improved water quality in the Park.
Dr. Monohan finished with a technical presentation on The Sierra Fund’s Humbug Creek Watershed Assessment and Management Recommendations, the recommendations of which are currently under consideration by Parks. The Sierra Fund continues to partner with Parks to identify and fill data gaps, and conduct planning for future CEQA compliance to implement solutions.