While it may not look like much, those cracks offer easy access to groundwater—a potential for rapid contamination. (Photo courtesy of EscarpAction).

No adverse impact on water quality and quantity in neighbouring wells; Canada Carbon says hydrogeological study is complete

Canada Carbon issued a press release on February 28, announcing the completion of its final hydrogeological study for the marble quarry project located in Grenville-sur-la-Rouge, Quebec. The report was prepared by BluMetric and is titled: “Étude hydrogéologique, projet carrière de marbre Miller, Grenville-sur-la-Rouge (Québec)”. The report can be found at: https://www.canadacarbon.com/docs/Final_Hydrogeological_Report_Quarry.pdf.

Canada Carbon mandated BluMetric to complete the final hydrogeological report to be part of the documentation needed for its certificate of authorization request to the Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Fight against Climate Change (“MDDELCC”).  This final report meets all of the requirements of the “Quarry and Sand Pit By-Laws” of the MDDELCC and follows the preliminary report which was completed in 2016.

The company’s last drill program in the Spring of 2017 resulted in the confirmation of the quarry location. With the final parameters of the quarry available, BluMetric was able to complete the necessary hydrogeological work between June and December 2017.  The final hydrogeological report for the Miller graphite mine will be completed at a later date when the final pit parameters will be known.

The work completed by BluMetric includes: analysis of the existing databases; drill hole inspection; pumping tests on two distinct hydrogeological drill holes, installation of two sand point wells, water level measurement in drill holes; slug and pumping tests; sampling for water quality of underground waters; and the evaluation of the quarry’s dewatering impact on water users less than 1 km from the proposed pit.  The report describes the complete methodology that was followed.

The key conclusions from the report are as follows:

  • The underground water flows and hydraulic gradient show a flow from the north toward the south and south-east.  This means that the water on the Miller Project is moving away from McGillivry Lake area and the closest neighbor located on Scotch Road;
  • No hydraulic link was established between the surface water and the underground waters.  This indicates that the pumping of underground water will not affect the surface water level around the quarry;
  • The interception of surface water and the dewatering of the marble quarry will have no impact on the water wells that provide water to the users located along Scotch Road.  The range of influence towards north-east is 150 m while the closest well is 720 m away from the future quarry.  The water quality of the wells will not be affected;
  • The calculated hydraulic conductivity varies between 1×10-9 and 7×10-7 meter/second.  These values are representative of an aquifer that is half-permeable to impermeable and of mediocre quality.  Using the hydraulic gradient, the effective porosity and the hydraulic conductivity, it can be determined that there is a mean horizontal flow of 4 to 5 meters per year;
  • Pumping tests defined a transmissivity during pumping that varies between 0.07 and 0.87 m2/day, with a mean value of 0.163 m2/day and a median of 0.120 m2/day.  As a point of reference, transmissivity of 1 m2/day is classified a very low. No values higher than 1 m2/day were observed at the Miller Project;
  • The low transmissivity of the ground means that the dewatering of the quarry area won’t have an impact on neighboring water nappes;
  • The aquifer is classified as class III; and
  • Analysis of the ground water shows that no elements in the groundwater geochemistry exceed the criterion requested by the MDDELCC.  Analysis of one sand point well indicated anomalous zinc content and higher than normal metal levels for some other elements.  That anomaly is the result of a faulty well and the resulting degradation of the galvanized steel inside of the well. An anomaly in hydrocarbon was also found in the water of that well but no source or evidence of contamination was found.

Canada Carbon Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mr. R. Bruce Duncan remarked, “We are happy to provide this definitive report which confirms that the marble quarry is environmentally safe for water quantity and quality in neighboring water wells. Furthermore, the low connectivity between groundwater and surface water provides us with further comfort that our impact on surface biological elements around the project will also be very low given the low volumes of water that need to be managed. We are pleased to be able to share this report with all interested parties.”

New Sound Simulations for the Miller Project

In an effort to ensure that the infrastructure of the Miller Project has the lowest sound impact possible for the residents of Grenville-sur-la-Rouge, the Company requested new simulations of sound impact for different parameters.  More specifically, the Company requested that Vinacoustik inc., based in Montreal, model the impact of a 5 m and a 15 m acoustic wall on the Miller site.

In our initial sound study (https://www.canadacarbon.com/docs/CCB-SON-Etude-Accoustique-PRELIMINAIRE-2.pdf) we determined that by constructing a 5 m acoustic wall next to the graphite pits on the Miller site, the Company’s sound impact was under the required limits of the MDDELCC of 45 decibels during the day and 40 decibels at night. The new model indicates that when only the marble quarry is in operation, the sound level doesn’t exceed 29.9 decibels for the two nearest neighbours, which is the equivalent of the sound level of a quiet rural area. When the graphite pits are integrated in the model, the sound level reaches a maximum of 43.2 decibels during the day when using a 5 m acoustic wall and is reduced to 40.5 decibels when using a 15 m acoustic wall.  The graphite pits will not operate at night.  Furthermore, the excavation depth of the graphite pits is not integrated in the sound study. As the pit goes deeper this will significantly reduce the sound impact of the operations.  The Company is still investigating options to further reduce noise including the modification of the geometry of the acoustic wall and the selection of quieter equipment or modification of processes.  The new model can be found at: https://www.canadacarbon.com/docs/CCB-SON-Nouveau-Modele.pdf while the technical details are to be found in the initial report.  It is important to note that sound modelling is required by the MDDELCC if a quarry is located less than 600 m away from any housing.  Miller’s closest neighbour is located 720 m away.

While conducting the second sound study, Vinacoustik inc. identified a mistake in its initial report. In table 3, the sound level at R1 and R2 were reported as 33.4 decibels and 39.0 decibels however the actual numbers were 28.6 decibels and 31.5 decibels, respectively.  A new version of the report correcting the error is now replacing the older version on the website.

QUALIFIED PERSON

Steven Lauzier, P.Geo. OGQ1430, a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101 has reviewed and approved the technical content of this news release.

Canada Carbon is currently pursuing legal action against Grenville-sur-la-Rouge and its councillors.

From that previous story: At the end of February 2018, Canada Carbon announced that it was in the process of appealing a Commission for the Protection on of Agricultural Land (CPTAQ) decision, which ruled on January 25, 2018 that its Miller Mine project was not compatible with existing municipal bylaws and that it was closing the file. Canada Carbon says it received a letter from the CPTAQ confirming its decision to close the file was because the CPTAQ was notified of a resolution adopted by Grenville-sur-la-Rouge (GSLR) council on December 12, 2017, stating that Canada Carbon’s project was non-compliant to its zoning by-law.

Now, Canada Carbon says it is in the process of filing a lawsuit against GSLR and its councillors, according to a press release dated February 26, 2018.

The legal action will demand that GSLR and its councillors annul the December 12, 2017 resolution of non-compliance. The case will be made that Canada Carbon has crystallized its right to a mining and a marble quarry from the moment it filed a request before the CPTAQ and will argue that the GSLR councillors acted in bad faith; the company is suing the municipality and the councillors personally for damages.

In addition, Canada Carbon has filed an appeal before Quebec’s Administrative Tribunal to review CPTAQ’s decision. The company says that the CPTAQ “made errors concerning the admissibility of Canada Carbon’s application, that the CPTAQ erred by failing to take into account the effect of section 246 of the Act respecting land use planning and development which states that the graphite mining is not subject to the zoning regulations, and that the CPTAQ violated the rules of procedural fairness.”

Read the full story here.


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Louise Sproule

Louise Sproule

Publisher at The Review
Louise Sproule has been the publisher of The Review since 1992. A part-time job after high school at The Review got Sproule hooked on community newspapers and all that they represent. She loves to write, has covered every kind of event you can think of, loves to organize community events and loves her small town and taking photographs across the region. She dreams of writing a book one day so she can finally tell all of the town's secrets! She must be stopped! Keep subscribing to The Review . . . or else!
Louise Sproule

Louise Sproule

Louise Sproule has been the publisher of The Review since 1992. A part-time job after high school at The Review got Sproule hooked on community newspapers and all that they represent. She loves to write, has covered every kind of event you can think of, loves to organize community events and loves her small town and taking photographs across the region. She dreams of writing a book one day so she can finally tell all of the town's secrets! She must be stopped! Keep subscribing to The Review . . . or else!

louise has 548 posts and counting.See all posts by louise

3 thoughts on “No adverse impact on water quality and quantity in neighbouring wells; Canada Carbon says hydrogeological study is complete

  • March 6, 2018 at 9:09 pm
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    I’m not familiar with the rock formation of the proposed quarry site but the fact that it would be a marble quarry suggests that the photo is perhaps a bit misleading as it shows karstic limestone at Jessup’s Falls, not marble near Grenville-sur-la-Rouge.
    – Madeleine Lemieux, EscarpAction Jessup’s Falls

    • March 7, 2018 at 11:46 am
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      You could be right. We will check on the photo source for this story.

  • March 14, 2018 at 12:00 pm
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    Not sure the purpose of the photo or its Caption. Misleading, unscientific bias.

Comments are closed.