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Lead Pathways Studies

In 2006, Mount Isa Mines commissioned the most comprehensive study of its kind in Australia to investigate the natural and industrial pathways of lead and other heavy metals into the Mount Isa community and assess the potential human and ecological health risks.

Lead Pathways Study Water Report – Mount Isa Mines

The Lead Pathways Study Water Report was released in September 2012 and provided some important insights into the health of our waterways and our continued safe enjoyment of them.

The Water Report confirmed that Mount Isa’s drinking (potable) water supply, treated at Clear Water Lagoon, meets Australian Drinking Water Guidelines (ADWGs).

Clear Water Lagoon was constructed as a protected reservoir and acts as a biological filter for treating water from Lake Moondarra. It is considered an integral part of water treatment and filters on average 2,000 mega litres of water per month, supplying potable water to Mount Isa’s community, mining and other industries.

Lead Pathways Study Water Report – Mount Isa Mines

Lead Pathways Study Land Report – Mount Isa Mines

Purpose The purpose of the Land Report was to assess historical heavy metal and metalloid contamination within the Leichhardt River, the swimming pool area and Kruttschnitt oval to determine the effectiveness of previous remedial works conducted on these areas and any potential risk to human and ecological health. The previous remedial works were undertaken between 1991 and 1994 to remove mine-related sediments left over from historical mining practices of the 1940s and 1950s.

Between April and August 2007, 21 soil and sediment samples were collected from 16 locations within the Leichhardt River and surrounding area (refer to Figure 1 and Table 1). The samples were analysed in order to:

  • understand the distribution of historical contamination within an area previously known to be contaminated;
  • determine the bio-accessibility of heavy metals in the soil and sediment samples as an estimate of bioavailability;
  • complete a human health risk assessment to determine the potential site specific risk from heavy metal and metalloid contamination;
  • compare sediment results against sediment quality guidelines prepared by the Australian and New Zealand Environmental Conservation Council (ANZECC 2000) to measure any potential ecological toxicity.

Lead Pathways Study Land Report – Mount Isa Mines

Lead Pathways Study Air Report – Mount Isa Mines

Lead Pathways Study – Air (PDF 3.94MB)