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ReviewofPeabodyWesternCoalCompanys(19842004) DeterminationofProbableHydrologicConsequencesforthe BlackMesaKayentaCoalMine DanielHiggins,PhD June2011

INTRODUCTION Thisreportsummarizesmyevaluationofthepredictivereliabilityandmethodologicaladequacyof PeabodyCoalCompanys1985determinationofProbableHydrologicConsequences(PCCPHC1985)that wasincludedinitsMiningandReclamationPlan:BlackMesaandKayentaMines1(PCC1985).This reportincludesanevaluationoftworelatedimpactassessmentsperformedbytheOfficeofSurface MiningReclamationandEnforcement(OSM)thatwerebaseduponPeabodysPHC.

ProbableHydrologicConsequences(PHC) On31October1984,PeabodysubmittedapermitapplicationtoOSMseekingapprovalofitsmining planfortheBlackMesaKayentaCoalMine(PCC1985).ThisapplicationrequiredPeabodytodetermine theprobablehydrologicconsequencesthatwouldresultfromtheproposedactivities(OSM2004).To makethisdetermination,Peabodyusedthesimulationresultsofagroundwatermodeldevelopedby theU.S.GeologicalSurvey(seeEychaner1983,andBrownandEychaner1988).

CumulativeHydrologicImpactAssessment(CHIA) Peabodys1985PHCservedasthemainsourceofinputforthedevelopmentofthecumulative hydrologicimpactassessment(OSM2002).In1989,OSMreleaseditsCumulativeHydrologicImpact AssessmentofthePeabodyCoalCompanyBlackMesa/KayentaMine(referencedasOSMCHIA1989).

EnvironmentalImpactStatement(EIS) TheinformationinOSMs1989CHIAwasusedtoprovidethetechnicalhydrologicdataneededinits DraftandFinalEnvironmentalImpactStatement(referencedasOSMEIS1990,1989). BecausetheUSGSgroundwatermodel(Eychaner1983;BrownandEychaner1988)providedthe minerelatedimpactpredictionsforPeabodys1985PHC(PCC1985)andOSMs1989CHIA(OSMCHIA 1989)and1990EIS(OSMEIS1990,1989),anevaluationoftheirpredictivereliabilityiswarranted. Collectively,thepredictionsinthesedocumentsprovidedthefoundationforallregulatorydecisions relatedtotheprotectionofBlackMesasgroundwaterresourcessincethemid1980s. Thefollowingreportsummarizesmyevaluationofthepredictivereliabilityandmethodological adequacyoftheseinterrelateddocuments.
Peabodyspermitapplication(PCC1985)wasmadepublicin2011throughtheFreedomofInformationAct. OSMsCHIA(OSMCHIA1989)andEIS(OSMEIS1990)wereacquiredviaOSMswebsite:http://www.osmre.gov/.
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Studycontentsandsummaryoffindings OVERVIEW

Literaturereviewontheregulatoryapplicationofgroundwatermodels PeabodysPHCandtheevolutionoftheUSGSgroundwatermodel EvaluationmethodofPeabodysPHC

1) PEABODYWITHDRAWALS a) PeabodywithdrawalsinrelationtoNaquiferrecharge ThePHC,CHIA,andEISunderestimatedPeabodywithdrawalsbyapproximately6,735acrefeet duringthefifteenyearperiodtheminewasfullyoperational(aftercompletionoftheEIS).

AssumingthatPeabodyssafeyield,waterbudgetmethodologyisanappropriatemethodfor determiningsustainablegroundwaterexploitation,andassumingthattheUSGSsmostrecent rechargeestimateiscorrect,Peabodystotalwithdrawalshaveexceededtherateofnatural rechargebyapproximately21,000to53,000acrefeet. b) TheWaterBudgetMyth Since1940,USGShydrogeologistshavecontinuouslydemonstratedthatthesafeyieldwater budgetmethodologyisafallacyandisnotanappropriatemethodfordeterminingsustainable ratesofgroundwaterdevelopment. c) Futurepumpingprojections The1983USGSmodelpredictedthat,by1990,therateofmunicipalwithdrawalsfromthetribal communitieswouldovertaketherateofPeabodywithdrawals.Thisneveroccurred.

2) GROUNDWATERQUANTITY a) KAYENTA DisagreementregardinghydrologiccharacteristicsatKayentaprecedesminingoperationsand continuestobethesourceofmuchcontention.ThePHC,CHIA,andEISassumethat85%ofthe waterleveldeclineatKayentawouldbecausedbyKayentaswithdrawals.TheEISexplainsthat theclosestthatpotentiometricsurfacecomestothetopoftheNaquiferis366feetandwould notoccuruntiltheyear2052.

Inreality,however,thewaterlevelatKayentahadfallenbelowthetopoftheNaquiferin2005. Thus,thisEISpredictionisoffbynearly50yearsandapproximately370feet. i) WaterlevelinBM3andKayentawithdrawals ThereisnostatisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweentherateofKayentawithdrawalsand waterleveldeclineatKayentawellBM3.Infact,thisanalysisdemonstratesthatas Kayentaswithdrawalsincrease,thewaterleveldoesnotfall,butitactuallyrises.

ii) WaterlevelinBM3andPeabodywithdrawals Thereisastrong,statisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweentherateofPeabodys increasingwithdrawalsandwaterleveldeclineinKayentawellBM3.Itishypothesizedhere thatthemagnitudeofPeabodywithdrawalsissogreatthatitsimplyskewsanyindicatorof KayentaswithdrawalsonthewaterlevelinBM3. iii) Indicatorsusingboxplotswithoutliers 1985theyearthatthemineceasedwithdrawalsduetomaintenanceattheMohave GeneratingStationisastatisticaloutlierforPeabodywithdrawals.Thiscoincideswithan outlierforwaterlevelinKayentawellBM3:1985istheonlyyearthatwaterlevelsfellbelow 2standarddeviationsofthemeanwaterlevel.

Moreover,Kayentastotalwithdrawalsin1985areneartheirmean,thushavingnoeffecton theBM3sconspicuousrecoverythatyear. iv) OSMsconclusiononthesourceofKayentaswaterleveldecline OSMattributesdrawdownatKayentatomunicipalwithdrawals. b) TUBACITY/MOENKOPI WaterleveldeclineatTubaCityandMoenkopi(TC/M)isattributedentirelytolocal,municipal withdrawals.Theclosestthatanymeasureableminingrelatedimpactisexpectedtooccuris fifteenmilesawayfromTC/Mandwillnotoccuruntil2052.

TheUSGSmonitorsthreeNTUAandthreeBIAwellsinthevicinityofTubaCityandMoenkopi. Waterleveldeclineattributedtomunicipalpumpagewasoverestimatedbyamean44%in thethreeNTUAwells,byamean103%inthethreeBIAwells,orbyamean73%inthesix combinedwells. i) NocorrelationbetweenTubaCitywithdrawalsandTubaCitywaterlevels ThemodeloverestimatedtherateofTC/Msmunicipalwithdrawalsby11%.Thedisparity betweenoverestimateddeclineandoverestimatedwithdrawalsindicatemodelerror. ii) DischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpringandtoMoenkopiWash iii) TheUSGSmodelandNaquiferdischarge SpringdischargenearTC/Mwaspredictedtodeclineby12%butthiswouldbecaused entirelybymunicipalwithdrawals. iv) Therelationshipbetweenspringsandwaterlevel v) Naquifersprings vi) CHIAcriterionformaterialdamagetospringdischarge OSMdeterminedthematerialdamagecriterionforminerelatedimpacts:dischargefrom springsmustnotdeclinebymorethan10%inresponsetominerelatedgroundwater withdrawals.

vii) Evaluationofthecriterion TheUSGSmonitoringprogramhasmeasureddischargefromfourspringssince approximately1987.However,throughwateryear2005,theUSGSreportsinadvertently concealeddecliningtrendsinspringdischargethroughtheuseoflogarithmiccharts.Since 1987,thedeclineatMoenkopiSchoolSpringexceeds26.2%;ifthisisattributabletoPeabody withdrawalsratherthanmunicipalwithdrawals,thenthethresholdformaterialdamageto springdischargehasbeenfarexceeded. viii) MoenkopiSchoolSpringandPeabodyWithdrawals Thereisaremarkablystrong,statisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweentherateof PeabodysincreasingwithdrawalsandtherateofdecliningdischargefromMoenkopiSchool Spring.(r=0.84;R2=0.71;p<0.0001) ix) MoenkopiSchoolSpringandTubaCitywithdrawals ThereisnostatisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweentherateofTubaCitywithdrawals anddischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpring.(r=0.31;R2=0.09;p=0.28) x) MoenkopiSchoolSpringandTubaCityPrecipitation ThereisnostatisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweenlocalprecipitationatTubaCityand therateofdischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpring.(R2=0.11;p=0.17) xi) OSMonprecipitationandspringdischarge OSMs1989CHIAalsoreportedthatthereisnoapparentrelationshipbetweenlocal precipitationatTubaCityandMoenkopiandNaquiferdischargeinthearea,butattributes decliningspringdischargetomunicipalwithdrawals. c) FORESTLAKE ThewellatForestLakerepresentstheclosestcommunitywelltotheminingarea.Maximum waterleveldeclinewaspredictedtooccurin2007;itwouldrecovertoits1985levelby2009. Totaldeclinesincethepreminingperiodwaspredictedtobe148feet.Impactsfrommining wouldbeminor. i) RecoveryatForestLake DuetothecessationofpumpingattheBlackMesamineattheendof2005ratherthan2006 asthemodelsimulated,maximumdeclineshouldhaveoccurredsoonerthan2007as predicted,shouldbelessthanpredicted,andshouldrecoversoonerthanpredicted. However,Maximumwaterleveldeclinedidnotoccurin2007.BetweenApril2008andMay 2010,thewaterlevelrose8.9ft.Atthetimeofthisstudy(June2011),nocurrentdataare availableanditisuncertainifthewaterlevelisrecovering.Thus,in2011havingnoclear recovery,muchlessrecoverytoits1985level,anddespiteitsextrafullyearforrecovery thegroundwaterpredictiondemonstratesthemodelssignificantconceptualand/orinput dataerror.

d) PINON Maximumwaterleveldeclinewaspredictedtooccurin2007.Totaldeclinefromthepremining periodwillbe107ft. i) RecoveryatPinon Fortheperiod1985to2007,drawdownatPinonwasunderestimatedby97%.Fromthepre miningperiodthrough2007,drawdownwasunderestimatedby52%.Atthetimethisstudywas performed,noappreciablerecoverywasapparentatthecommunityofPinon. 3) GROUNDWATERQUALITY ChangeingroundwaterqualityintheNaquiferwouldoccurofwithdrawalsinducedleakagefrom theoverlyingandpoorerqualityDaquifer.ThePHC,CHIA,andEISconcludedthatthereisno evidenceofsignificantverticalleakagefromtheDintotheNaquifer.Infact,themodel demonstratedthatonly4acrefeetofleakageperyearwouldbeinducedbyPeabodywithdrawals. Consideringthatvolumeofgroundwaterinstorage(estimatedat180millionacrefeet),theeffecton waterqualitywouldbenegligibleduetothe2millionto1dilution. a) Discussion TheDaquiferhasneverbeenmonitoredandtheUSGSgroundwatermodelwasnotdevelopedin considerationofanygroundwaterqualityparameters:ithasnohydrgeochemicalsimulation capacity.Themodelcannotdeterminechangeingroundwaterquality,nomatterthesource.

MonitoringdataexpresstwoNaquiferwellswithTDSlevelsinexcessofEPAsMaximum ContaminantLevel.TheconcentrationofarsenicatKeamsCanyonexceedsEPAsMaximum ContaminantLevelbyafactoroffour.DischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpringexpresses significantincreasingtrendsinTDS,chloride,andsulfate. 4) REACHOFPEABODYSWITHDRAWALS NumerousindicatorsexpressthattheimpactfromPeabodyswithdrawals,andthearealextentof theconfinedNaquifer,farexceedspreviousassumptions.TheseindicatorsareillustratedinUSGS waterlevelchartsfromwellsdistributedacrossthe(assumed)confinedandunconfinedportionsof theaquifer. 5) SUMMARY 6) REFERENCES

Figure1.TribalcommunitiesintheBlackMesahydrologicbasinareaandthelocationoftheBlackMesa Kayentacoalmineleasearea(illustrationfromMacy2010)

PROBABLEHYDROLOGICCONSEQUENCES(PHC) Literaturereviewontheregulatoryapplicationofgroundwatermodels KonikowandBredehoeft(1992)explainthat,likehypotheses,groundwatermodelsaregeneratedas ameansofsuggestingexplanationsforobservedphenomenaandpredictingcausalrelationships betweenphenomena:understandingofagroundwaterbasinincreaseswhenthemodelisiteratively tested,falsified,andrefinedovertimetodevelopamoreaccuraterepresentationofthesystem. The underlying philosophy of processsimulating deterministicmodeling is that, given a comprehensive understanding of the processes by which stresses on a system produce subsequent responses in that system, a systems response to any set of stresses can be defined or predetermined through that understanding of the governing (or controlling) processes,evenifthemagnitudeofthenewstressesfalloutsideoftherangeofhistorically observedstresses.Predictionsmadethiswayassumeanunderstandingofcauseandeffect relations. The accuracy of such deterministic forecasts thus depends, in part, upon how closelyourconceptsof thegoverning processesreflect theprocessesthatactuallycontrol thesystemsbehavior.(Konikow1986) Ratherthandemonstratingtheaccuracyandcompletenessofourhydrologicknowledge, groundwatermodelsexposeuncertaintiesandfacilitatediscussionofpossibleresponses,whichmay includevariousprecautionaryactions,stepstoincreaseormaintainsocialflexibilityandecological resilience,and/orresearchandmonitoringschemestoreduceuncertainty(Carpenteretal.2002). Theaccuracyofdeterministicgroundwatermodelscomesintoquestionwhenregulatoryagencies andthepublicrequireassurancethatpotentialimpactsfromaproposedprojecthavenotbeen underestimated;becausedecisionmakersrelyuponimpactassessmentstoapproveordisapprove projectsthatcouldadverselyaffectsocialandecologicalsystems,concernregardingthepredictive reliabilityorcorrectnessofgroundwatermodelsiswarranted(Hassan2004;WoessnerandAnderson 1996;Oreskesetal.1994;Sargent1990). Consequently,modelershavepursuedmethodsfortestingtheveracityoftheirmodels:thenotion hasemergedthatnumericalmodelscanbeverifiedorvalidated...Claimsaboutverificationand validationofmodelresultsarenowroutinelyfoundinthepublishedliterature(Oreskesetal.1994). However,proceduralinconsistency,semanticconfusion,anddisagreementregardingmodelcapabilities continuetohinderthemodelingprocess,problematizepolicydecisions,andfosterpublicskepticism (NRC1990,2000;LeijnseandHassanizadeh1994;KonikowandBredehoeft1992;Andersonand Woessner1992a,1992b).

Acceptabilityofgroundwatermodelsshouldbedeterminedbyusingconfirmingobservationsto supportsubjectivejudgment.Thejudgmentismadeinthecontextofthestatedpurposeofthemodel andthenatureofthesupportingobservationsassociatedwitheachcomponentofthemodeling process(WoessnerandAnderson1996).TheNationalResearchCouncil2(1990)acknowledgesthe inherentlimitationsofdeterministicgroundwatermodels,adding: Modelers must contend with the practical reality that model results, more than other expressions of professional judgment, have the capacity to appear more certain, more precise,andmoreauthoritativethantheyreallyare.Manypeoplewhoareusingorrelying upon the results of contaminant transport models are not fully aware of the assumptions andidealizationsthatareincorporatedintothemorofthelimitationsofthestateoftheart. Thereisadangerthatsomemayinferfromthesmoothnessofthecomputergraphicsorthe number of decimal places that appear on the tabulation of the calculations a level of accuracy that far exceeds that of the model. There are inherent inaccuracies in the theoretical equations, the boundary conditions, and other conditions and in the codes. Special care therefore must be taken in the presentation of modeling results. Modelers must understand the legal framework within which their work is used. Similarly, decision makers, whether they operate agencies or in courts, must understand the limitations of models. Thereisnostandardprotocolforgroundwatersystemmodeling,ascertainingmodelvalidity,or reportingsimulationresults.Consequently,agreementuponstandardsforacceptingtheconceptual accuracyandpredictivereliabilityofadeterministicgroundwatermodelcontinuestobethesourceof muchcontention(AndersonandWoessner1992a;Hassan2004).Becausetherearenumerous interpretationsofthetermsverificationandvalidation,therearenumerousapproachesforconducting theseprocessesanddisparatestandardsforgaugingtheirattainment:Bothwordsimplyauthentication ofboththetruthandaccuracyofthemodel(KonikowandBredehoeft1992).Whenthetermsareused interchangeablytoindicatethatmodelpredictionsareconsistentwithobservationaldatamodelers misleadinglyimplythatvalidationandverificationaresynonymous,andthatvalidationestablishesthe veracityofthemodel(Oreskesetal.1994).Itisoftenmistakenlyassumedthatonceamodelhasbeen calibrated,ithasalsobeenvalidated,andthusthemodelisperceivedasanacceptabletoolfor predictingthefutureconditionsofahydrologicalbasin(Freyberg1988;KonikowandBredehoeft1992). However,Verification,calibration,andvalidationarethreedistinctprocesses,andallthreearerequired
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SeeGroundWaterModels:ScientificandRegulatoryApplications(1990).NRCmembersaredrawnfromthe councilsoftheNationalAcademyofSciences,theNationalAcademyofEngineering,andtheInstituteofMedicine. The Members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competence and with regardtoappropriatebalance(NRC1990).

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fordeterminingthebiophysicalaccuracyandpredictivereliabilityofagroundwatermodel.Giventhe inherentcomplexityofgroundwatersystemsandthesubjectivityrequiredinthemodelingprocess, WoessnerandAnderson(1996)haveproposedthreeunderlyingprinciplesformodelersandmodel userstokeepinmind:(1)groundwatermodelingisinherentlyuncertain;(2)modelacceptabilityshould bebaseduponthestrengthandnumberofactualobservationsthatconfirmthemodelspredictions; and(3)subjectivejudgmentdeterminesifamodelappropriatelyrepresentsthesystem. Calibrationofagroundwatermodeldeterminesthelevelofaccuracythatamodelcanreproduce historicalconditionswithinapredeterminedrangeofacceptability.Becausedeterminingtheactual distributionofaquiferparametersisbothtechnicallyandeconomicallyunfeasible,calibrationisa methodofsubjectivelyselectingasetofparametervaluesthroughmanualtrialanderror(orautomated programs)forthesystem.Referredtoashistorymatching,theprocessforcesthemodeltoreproduce historicalconditionsbychangingparametervaluesuntilanacceptablerangeofaccuracyisachieved; Therearenorulesotherthanonesjudgment(Konikow1986;KonikowandBredehoeft1992,1993). Calibratedmodelsareoftenpresented,eitherimplicitlyorexplicitly,asempiricallyadequate representationsofthesystemthatis,asvalidrepresentationofthesystembutthisismisleading. Konikow(1986)acknowledgesoneconsistentsourceofmodelerrorwhencalibrationisequatedwith validation: Itshouldberecognizedthatwhenmodelparametershavebeenadjustedduringcalibration to obtain best fit to historical data, there is a bias towards extrapolating existing trends whenpredictingfutureconditions,inpartbecausepredictionsoffuturestressesareoften basedonexistingtrends.Conceptsinherentinagivenmodelmaybeadequateoverthe observed range of stresses, but may prove to be oversimplified of invalid approximations underanewandpreviouslyinexperiencedtypeormagnitudeofstresses. Oreskesetal.(1994)explainthatthenecessitytorefineacalibratedmodelsuggeststhatthe empiricaladequacyofnumericalmodelsisforcedConsiderthedifferencebetweenstatingthata modelisverifiedandstatingthatithasforcedempiricalaccuracy. Itisaxiomaticthatmodelsofcomplexsystemscannotbevalidated:theycanonlybeinvalidatedand refinedovertimebytestingtheextenttowhichtheydivergefromreality(Holdgate1978;Holling1978; KonikowandBredehoeft1992).Indeterministicgroundwatermodels,calibrationiscommonlyusedas thebasisforsizingsustainableratesofexploitation.However,becausetheparametersolutionisnon unique,successfulcomparisonscanresultfromanerroneousmodel:theiterativeprocessofcomparing

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modelpredictionstofieldobservationsonlyrevealserrorsitdoesnotsignifytheabsenceoferrors (KonikowandBredehoeft1992;Greenbergetal.1976). Therearecasesinhydrologywhereourunderstandingofprocessesmaybegreat,butpredictive abilityislow,andothercaseswhereunderstandingisminimal,butpredictiveaccuracyisveryhigh.In anyevent,theaccuracyofthepredictioncannotbeassesseduntilafterthepredictedperiodoftimehas passed(KonikowandBredehoeft1992;emphasisadded). Ifvalidationisinterpretedtomeanthatamodelcanreliablypredictthesystemsfuturebehavior (i.e.predictivevalidation),thenitcanonlybeachievedbyperformingapostaudit(Andersonand Woessner1992b).However,validationisunlikely:Theissueofvalidationismainlyaregulatoryone, notascientificoneBecauseourunderstandingofasystemwillalwaysbeincomplete,amodelcan neverbeprovenvalidfromascientificstandpoint(AndersonandWoessner1992b). PeabodysPHCandtheevolutionoftheUSGSgroundwatermodel TheU.S.GeologicalSurvey(Eychaner1983)hasmodeledtheeffectsofthepumpingina fashionwhichpermitsthedistinctionofthetwoseparatedrawdownamountsatcommon locations As can be seen, by the year 2001, the magnitude of the Peabody pumpage impact, in terms of the areal extent of drawdowns, is substantial. However, when comparing the magnitude of the Peabody drawdowns in terms of total drawdown at a location, the impact takes on less significance The significance of Peabody caused drawdowns on total available community well water heights is not significant. (PCCPHC 1985:37,39) TheUSGeologicalSurveyfirstdevelopeditstwodimensionalnumericalmodeloftheNaquiferin 1981(Eychaner1981)usingMODFLOW(Trescottetal.1976).Themodelwasroutinelyevaluatedand updatedthroughoutitsperiodofuse.By1982,totalpumpagefromtheNaquiferhadincreasedenough tocausesignificantwaterleveldecline;theUSGSupdateditsmodeltoimprovetheestimatesinareas ofuncertainty,andtheresultingestimatescollectivelyareconsideredtobemorereliable(Eychaner 1983;thisversionoftheUSGSgroundwatermodel,referredtoasEychaner1983,providedthe simulationsthatwereusedinPeabodysdeterminationofProbablehydrologicConsequences). Althoughthe1983modelwasjudgedtoreproduceNAquiferbehaviorreasonablywell,itslimitations wereexplicitlyoutlined:inflowandoutflowwereuncertain,verticalleakagewasignored,future precipitationandwithdrawalrateswereunknowable,furtherstudieswereneededtoverify assumptionsandincreaseunderstandingofaquiferdynamicsandresponsetopumpingstress,andthe waterbudgetcouldnotbecalculatedgiveninsufficientdata(Eychaner1983,1981).

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Theunavailableaquiferparametervalueswereestimatedduringthemodelscalibrationprocedures becausedataarenotavailableformostnodes.Somedatamaybeincorrectorbesubjecttomultiple interpretations(Eychaner1983:14).Parameter(aquiferthickness,transmissivity,etc.)wereestimated andthemodelcalculatedwaterlevelsforeachnode;disparitybetweencomputedandactualwater levelswasexpected(Eychaner1983).Itisnotablethatthemodelpredictedthatmostofthe groundwaterlosttoindustrialpumpagewouldberecoveredwithinafewyearsifwithdrawalsatthe mineceased,andthat,by1990,municipalsupplypumpageisexpectedtoexceedpumpageatthe mine(Eychaner1983). By1985,divergencebetweensimulationsandobservationswasevident,sothemodelwasrerunto includepumpageforthefiveyearsfrom1980to1984andparameteradjustments(recalibration)were madetoreflectthemeasuredchanges(HillandWhetten1986). Through1986,groundwaterlevelsinnonindustrialwellsintheconfinedportionoftheNaquifer continuedtodeclinesteadily.Thatsameyear,areversalofthetrendoccurredinresponsetoPeabody shuttingdowntheirwellsfor6monthsin1985duetomaintenanceattheMohaveGeneratingStation3 (HillandWhetten1986).Whenpumpingresumedin1987,waterlevelsinthenonindustrialwells resumedtheirdecliningtrendsandreportedtheirlowestlevelssinceminingoperationscommenced. Further,mostoftheobservationandnonindustrialwellsinthenortheasternsectionoftheconfined areaoftheNaquifershowedrecorddeclines(HillandSottilare1987). USGSevaluatedthemodelsperformanceagainin1987andconcludedthatitwasareasonable representationofNaquiferconditions(HillandSottilare1987).However,becausethesoftware programdidnotrunproperlyonthenewcomputersystemwhenUSGSattemptedthemodelupdate,it wasconvertedtoanewmodelingprogram(McDonaldandHarbaugh1984),wasrecalibratedusing revisedaquiferparameterestimates4,andusedafinerspatialgrid. The1988update(BrownandEychaner1988)ranfivepumpingscenariosincludingbothindustrial andmunicipalpumpingfortheperiod19852051(twentyyearsaftergroundwaterpumpingwould ceaseunderthenewlyproposedpermitapplication).Eachsimulationwasbasedupontheproposed
ThisreversalappearstobeseenthroughoutmanyNaquiferwellsmonitoredbytheUSGS.Figure19,atthe endofthisreport,illustratesnumerouswellswithaconspicuouswaterlevelrecoveryspikearoundthisperiod. 4 Reparameterization of the model was significant: conductivity yielded unsatisfactory results so they were completely recalibrated; recharge increased 4% to maintain a better balance between inflow and outflow; evapotranspirationincreasedfrom6,000af/yto6,600af/y;thiswasbalanced;outflowtoriversandspringswas reducedfrom9,640af/yto7,030af/y;riveranddrainconductancestoachieveareasonablematchofbothinflow and head; watertable depth affecting evapotranspiration rates were changed; transmissivity throughout the modelareachanged;windmillpumpagewasincluded(BrownandEychaner1988).
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developmentregimeandcommunitygrowthprojections.However,theUSGSexplained:theaccuracy ofprojectedwaterlevelsisuncertain.Futurewithdrawalsthatgreatlyexceedtheamountswithdrawn through1984maycauseunanticipatedresponsesintheaquifer.Longtermprojectionsthatinclude largeincreasesinpumpageshouldbeusedwithcaution(BrownandEychaner1988). Consequently,theUSGSexplained,Theseregionalmodelscannotadequatelyrepresentthelocal geologyandsimulatehydrologicprocessesindetail,andthatthemodelsimulationsarebetterusedto compareeffectsofdifferentdevelopmentplansratherthanestimateactualfuturewaterlevelsand waterbudgetcomponents(BrownandEychaner1988). In1993,PapadopolusandAssociates(1993)evaluatedthemodelsinputdataandtechnical correctness,andWaterstoneEnvironmentalHydrologyandEngineering(1995)evaluateditsinputdata, statisticaluncertainty,andpredictivereliability;bothstudiesdeterminedthatthemodelperformed reasonablywell.AccordingtoOSM(2006:6),theUSGSupdatedthemodelin1994withnew monitoringdataandransimulations(LittinandMonroe1995;thisreportmakesnoreferencetothis update,however).AccordingtoPeabody(HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999:71),theUSGSupdatedthe modelin1996(LittinandMonroe1997). In1998,aSupervisoryHydrologistwiththeUSGSWaterResourcesDivisionarticulatedhisconcern regardingtheincongruitybetweenNaquiferoversightandmonitoring,explainingthattheUSGS monitoringprogramwasatbestanearlywarningsysteminthatitisindicativeratherthan deterministicandisnotsetuptospecificallyaddressmanyofthecriterion[sic]Thebottomlineis thatweneedtotailorthecurrentmonitoringprograminsuchawayastomorespecificallyaddress theabovecriteriaandinadeterministicfashion(Hart1998,quotedinNRDC2000). In2001,theUSGSsuggestedthat(1)abetterunderstandingofrecharge,discharge,andleakage shouldbeascertainedbeforeinvestingmoretimeinrefiningthemodel;and(2)anewmodelusing currentsoftwaremayprovideabetterrepresentationofaquiferdynamics(Thomas2002). In2008,theUSGSexplainedthatthemodelwasapoorrepresentationoftheNaquiferandhadnot performedwell(Leake2008). EvaluationmethodofPeabodysPHC ToevaluatetheaccuracyofthePHCpredictions(andconcurrently,thoseoftheUSGSgroundwater modelandOSMs1989CHIAand1990EIS)thisstudyreviewsandsummarizesthepredictiondatain PeabodysPHCandcomparesthemtoactualmeasuredobservationsafterthepredictionperiodhas passed.Insodoing,thisstudydemonstratestheaccuracyandsuccessofregulatoryprocedures.

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Regressionanalysisprovidesthemethodologicalbasisofanypostaudit;ithasnumerous advantageous:(1)itiswidelyusedthroughoutnumerousscientificandtechnologicaldisciplines;(2)itis relativelyeasytounderstandbythosewithoutscientificandtechnicaltraining;(3)itprovidesastrong empiricalevaluationofpredictionaccuracy;andfinally(4),becausemodelersuseregressiontocalibrate anddetermineamodelsfitnessforregulatorypurposes,itisbothamethodologicallyappropriateand fairmeansforevaluatingamodelspredictionaccuracyafterthepredictionperiodhaspassed(Anderson 1995;Oreskesetal.1994;Flavelle1992;AndersonandWoessner1992;Flavelleetal.1990;Konikow 1986).

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PEABODYWITHDRAWALS(19882006) The1985PHC,1989CHIA,and1990EISprojectedthatindustrialwithdrawalswouldremain constantat4,400af/ythrough2006,reducedto1,100af/yfrom2007through2011,andthenceasein 2012.However,accordingtotheFinalEIS,themodeloverestimatedindustrialwithdrawals: Since1988,PCC[PeabodyCoalCompany]hasusedwaterfromselectedimpoundmentsfor dust suppression instead of water from the Naquifer. This equates to approximately 400 acrefeet of water per year that is not removed from the Naquifer For this reason, the 4,400acrefeetperyearusedintheNaquifersimulationoverestimatesthewithdrawalfrom theNaquifersystemby400acrefeetorapproximately9percent.(OSMEIS1990:IV24) However,industrialwithdrawalswerenotoverestimated(Figure2).Fortheperiod19902005(the firstwateryearfollowingthecompletionoftheFinalEISthroughthefinalyearthatbothmineswere fullyoperational),Peabodywithdrawalsaveraged4,449af/y.Assumingthat400af/yofsurfacewater wasusedfordustsuppression(asexplainedintheEIS),theminesgroundwaterbudgetof4,000af/y wasunderestimatedbyapproximately449acrefeetperyear,totaling6,735acrefeetfortheperiod5.

PeabodyWithdrawals,19902005
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1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005

Figure2.Peabodywithdrawals,19902005.WithdrawaldatafromMacy(2010).
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Peabody and OSM consistently report is that Navajo residents freely take water from the Peabody wells. Recognizingthatthisusageoccursinthecontextofresidentsdrivingautomobilestotheleasearea,fillingwater containersatthePeabodywells,andreturningtotheirhomeswherethewaterisconsumed,itisunreasonableto arguethatthiscomponentaccountsforanythingmorethanaminisculefractionofPeabodyswithdrawals(see,for example,OSMEIS2008,2006,1990;OSMCHIA2008,1989;OSM2006,2004,2000,1998Peabody2002).

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PeabodyWithdrawalsandNAquiferRecharge OSMexplainedthat,becauseatnotimedoesthetotalwithdrawalfromthesystemexceedthe rechargetothesystem(13,000to16,000acrefeetperyear),allimpactsresultingfromthemines withdrawalsareoverestimated(OSMEIS1990:IV24).Assumingthattheconventionalsafeyield waterbudgetmethodologyisappropriatefordeterminingsustainableratesofgroundwater exploitation,considerationoftheUSGSsmostrecentandmostaccurateestimateforrechargetotheN aquiferiswarranted. In1997,theUSGSusedgeochemicalanalysistoreestimateNaquiferrechargeandconcludedthat itrangedfrom2,500to3,500af/y(LopesandHoffman1997).Assumingthisestimateiscorrect,forthe thirtytwowateryearsduringtheperiod19722005(theperiodthatbothBlackMesaandKayenta Mineswerefullyoperational,notincludingwateryear19841985whenwithdrawalsceasedfor6 months,Peabodywithdrawalsaveraged4,150af/y),underthebestcaserechargescenario(3,500af/y), theminedepletedNaquiferstoragebyatotalofnearly21,000acrefeet.Undertheworstcase rechargescenario(2,500af/y),theminedepletedtotalstorageintheNaquiferbynearly53,000acre feet(Figure3).

PeabodyWithdrawalsComparedtothe1997USGSRechargeEstimate

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TheWaterBudgetMyth6 Methodologically,thesafeyieldwaterbudgetmethodologyisnotanappropriatemeansfor determiningsustainableratesofgroundwaterexploitation.Infact,theWaterBudgetMythis commonlyreferredtoasanattractivefallacyandaperceptualconveniencethroughoutthescientific literatureinhydrogeology,groundwaterengineeringandmodeling,andnaturalresourcemanagement. Themethodassumesthatifthevolumeofgroundwaterwithdrawnfromanaquiferislessthantherate ofnaturalrecharge,thendevelopmentwillbesustainable;ifwithdrawalsequalrecharge,thendischarge willbestoppedbutstoragewillremainintact,andisthussustainable;andifwithdrawalsexceed recharge,thendischargewillbestopped,storagewillbedepleted,anddevelopmentisnotsustainable (i.e.groundwatermining).However,despitetheapparentlogicofthewaterbudgetparadigm,the methodfloutsthefundamentalprinciplesofhydrogeologicalengineering: Waterresourcescientistsareconcernedthatsomebasicprinciplesarebeingoverlookedby water managers. Perhaps the most common misconception in groundwater hydrology is that a water budget of an area determines the magnitude of possible groundwater development. Several wellknown hydrologists have addressed this misconception and attemptedtodispelit.Somehow,though,itpersistsandcontinuestocolordecisionsbythe watermanagementcommunity.(Bredehoeftetal.1982) AccordingtotheU.S.GeologicalSurvey,thewaterbudgetparadigmisanoversimplificationofthe informationthatisneededtounderstandtheeffectsofdevelopingagroundwatersystemApre developmentwaterbudgetbyitselfisoflimitedvalueindeterminingtheamountofgroundwaterthat canbewithdrawnonasustainedbasis(Alleyetal.1999). BalleauandMayer(1988)explainthatItwouldbehydrologicallyinaccurateandeconomically inefficienttoignorethetransitionperiodandtoassumethatgroundwaterisonlyoftwotypes:100 percentminedor100percentrecharged.Nonetheless,policydecisionmakerspreferthemethod becauseitsmathematicalprecisionimpliesexpertconsensusregardingsustainablegroundwater exploitation(Ludwigetal.1993). Whileempiricalprecisionishelpfulinwinningpoliticalbuyin,publicinterestsarenotwellserved byadoptinganattractivefallacythatthenaturalrechargeraterepresentsasaferateofyield(Balleau andMayer1988).
Numeroushydrogeologistshavecontinuouslydemonstratedtheproblemswiththewaterbudgetmethodology, datingbacktoTheis(1940).OthersincludeLohman1972;Bredehoeftetal.1982;Bredehoeft1997,2002,2003, 2006; Bredehoeft and Durbin 2009; Konikow and Bredehoeft 1992; Sophocleous 1997, 1998, 2000; Devlin and Sophocleous2004;Balleau1988;BalleauandMayer1988;Brown1996;AlleyandLeake2004;Alleyetal.1999; Alley2007;AlleyandEmery1986;Konikow1986.
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Sophocleous(1997)agreed,policymakersareprimarilyconcernedaboutaquiferdrawdownand surfacewaterdepletion,bothunrelatedtothenaturalrechargerate.Despiteitsirrelevance,natural rechargeisoftenusedingroundwaterpolicytobalancegroundwateruseunderthebannerofsafeyield. Adoptingsuchanattractivefallacydoesnotprovidescientificcredibility. Bredehoeft(1997)decried:Sustainablegroundwaterdevelopmenthasalmostnothingtodowith recharge...However,Icontinuetohearmycolleaguessaytheyarestudyingtherechargeinordertosize adevelopmentThewaterbudgetasitisusuallyappliedtoscaledevelopmentisamythTheissaid thisin1940.Yettheprofessioncontinuestoperpetuatethiswrongparadigm. Fiveyearslater,Bredehoeft(2002)implored...themythgoeson;itissoingrainedinthe communityscollectivethinkingthatnothingseemstoderailit. DevlinandSophocleous(2005)explainedthatdespitetheconclusivetheoreticalproofthatthe waterbudgetparadigmhasnoscientificmerit,itstillpersists. In2008,Millyetal.(2008)explainedthatclimatevariabilityfurtherexacerbatesconventional methodsofwatermanagement: Systems for management of water throughout the developed world have been designed and operated under the assumption of stationarity. Stationaritythe idea that natural systems fluctuate within an unchanging envelope of variabilityis a foundational concept that permeates training and practice in waterresource engineering. In view of the magnitudeandubiquityofthehydroclimaticchangeapparentlynowunderwayweassert that stationarity is dead and should no longer serve as a central, default assumption in waterresourceriskassessmentandplanning. Ifstationarityisdeadthatis,iftherateofprecipitationcannotbeassumedtofallwithina predictablerangeforaspecifiedareathentheparamountvariableinallofgroundwatermanagement isafixeduncertainty:iftheclimateischanging,asrecentevidencesuggests,thentheassumptionof equilibriumshouldbequestioned(Millyetal.2008). BredehoeftandDurbin(2009)explainthatifequilibriumofahydrologicbasinisuncertain,thenthe predeterminationofsustainableratesofdevelopmentisprecludedbythetimetofullcaptureproblem: largesystemsposeachallengetothewatermanager,especiallywhenthewatermanageriscommitted toattemptingtoreachanewequilibriumstateinwhichwaterlevelswillstabilizeandthesystemcanbe maintainedindefinitely.Theseattemptsaremiredbytworealities:(1)alargegroundwatersystem createsadelayedresponsebetweentheobservationofanimpactanditsmaximumeffectand(2)there isalongtimelagbetweenchangingthestressandobservinganimpactatadistantboundary.

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Futurepumpingstressprojections Oneparticularlyconspicuousassumptioninthe1983versionoftheUSGSmodelandthus, Peabodys1985PHCillustratesthemodelsconceptualuncertaintyandthemodelersinaccurate pumpingprojections.Eychaner(1983:1)explained:By1990municipalsupplypumpageisexpected toexceedpumpageatthemine.Inreality,however,municipalwithdrawalswouldneverovertake PeabodywithdrawalswhiletheBlackMesaKayentaminewasfullyoperational. Further,itisimperativetorecognizethatmunicipalwithdrawalsaredistributedthroughoutBlack Mesas5,400mi2area(inbothconfinedandunconfinedconditions)whereasPeabodywithdrawalsare centralizedatasingleareawithinconfinedconditions.

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Figure4.TotalindustrialandmunicipalwithdrawalsfromtheNaquifer,19682008.Withdrawaldata arefromMacy(2010). WATERQUANTITY PeabodysPHCconcludesthatthemagnitudeoftheminesgroundwaterwithdrawalswouldhavea substantialimpactonthearealextentofdrawdownandtheconeofdepressionwouldspreadover considerabledistance(PCCPHC1985:37,39).However,theimpactsfromtheproposedextensionof theminingperiodatthetribalcommunitieswouldbenegligibleandconfinedtotheminingareaonly:

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TheUSGSmodelassumedaPWCCpumpingrateof3,700AF/yandthatPWCCpumpage wouldceasein2001;whereasthecurrentcoalsupplyagreementsrunthrough2007and 2011fortheBlackMesaandKayentamines,respectively.Evenconsideringthisdifference, it is not anticipated that the Peabody induced drawdowns would increase much the amountofadditionaldrawdownfromthelongerpumpagewouldonlybeontheorderof 10to20feetneartheleasehold.Thiswouldcausenegligibleincreasesinthepercentof availablewaterheightlosses.(PCCPHC1985:39) TheEIS,CHIA,andEISprovidetestablewaterlevelpredictionsforthecommunitiesofKayenta,Tuba City/Moenkopi,ForestLake,andPinon(Table1).However,manyofthepredictionsarenotpresented inauniformmanner;comparisonsaremadewherepossible. Table1.PredictedandActualRatesofNAquiferDrawdownin2001

Predictiondatafor2001fromPCCPHC(1985).Actualwaterleveldatafor2001isfromThomas(2002).

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Kayenta The significance of tribal community pumpage should not be understressed. Eychaner states that in areas of large community pumpage, little of the simulated decline is causedbymining.AtKayenta,over85%ofthetotalwaterleveldeclineswillbecaused bycommunitypumpage. Peabodys1985determinationofProbablyHydrologicConsequences (PCCPHC1985:46) Ifaconfinedaquiferspotentiometricsurfaceisloweredtoorbelowtheaquiferstop,it is possible that he aquifer matrix will compress (collapse) causing general surface subsidenceandirreversiblychangingtheaquiferswaterproducingcharacteristics. OSMs1989CumulativeHydrologicImpactAssessment (OSMCHIA1989:55) For there to be a reduction in well production or for structural damage to occur the potentiometricsurfacewouldhavetobedrawndowntobelowthetopoftheconfined portionoftheaquiferItcanbeseen thatatnotimedoesthepotentiometricsurface drop to this level anywhere within the affected area for any scenario. The closest the potentiometricsurfacegetstothetopoftheconfinedaquiferforscenarioBis366feet atKeamsCanyonintheyear2052. OSMs1990FinalEnvironmentalImpactStatement (OSMEIS1990:IV28)

Sinceminingoperationscommencedin1968,therehasbeennoconsensusregardingthe hydrogeologicaldynamicsoftheNaquiferneartheDincommunityofKayenta,northofthe mine.Infact,in1971theBureauofReclamationexplained:Hydrologistsdonotagreewhether thesedomesticwells[inKayenta]areinthesamepressurezonesasthePeabodywells,buta monitoringprogramhasbeendevisedtoascertainthosefacts(USBR1971:39). TheEISonlyprovidesthepredictedwaterlevelatKayentain2007;nootherpredictiondataexist. PageIV30(OSMEIS1990)statesthatdrawdownfromtheprestressperiodto2007wouldbe58feet7. Between1965and2007,thewaterlevelattwowellsintheimmediateKayentaareahavebeen trackedbytheUSGSmonitoringprogram.By2007,thewellBM3hadfallen106.1feet(TruiniandMacy 2008;BMMP2010).Drawdownwasunderestimatedby48.1ft,or82.9%.DeclineatUSGSobservation wellBM2,whichis7.5milessoutheastofKayenta,wasunderestimatedby56%.
Asignificantincongruityexistshere:Peabodys1985PHCpredictedthat,by2001,waterlevelatKayentawould decline by 110 ft (PCCPHC 1985: 40). Five years later, OSMs 1990 EISwhich includes six additional years of Peabodywithdrawalsstatesthat,in2007,waterleveldeclineatKayentawouldbe58ft(OSMEIS1990:IV30). BecausethePHCprovidedtheinformationforthe1989CHIAwhichinturnprovidedthetechnicalinformationfor the 1990 EIS,the nearly50% change in the drawdown prediction is a significant and unexplained inconsistency, anddemonstratestheuncertaintiesanderrorsinthegroundwatermodel.
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Figure5.Kayentagroundwaterlevels,BM3(top),andBM2,(bottom;BMMP2010) NomeasurablerecoveryhasoccurredatKayenta. OSMsmaterialdamagethresholdforstructuralstabilityoftheNaquiferispotentiometricsurface (i.e.head)nolowerthan100ftabovethetopoftheaquifer(OSMCHIA1989).In2005,theUSGS reportedthewaterlevelatKayentawellBM3wasapproximately3.6feetbelowthetopoftheaquifer

itself(TruiniandMacy2007),thusthedamagethresholdhasbeenexceededby103.6ft.BecausetheN aquiferisnolongersaturatedatKayenta,itis,theoretically,vulnerabletocompaction. WaterLevelinBM3andKayentaWithdrawals TheregressionofBM3waterlevelstoKayentawithdrawals(19842008)demonstratesaweaklinear relationship.However,asthevolumeofKayentaswithdrawalsincrease,thewaterlevelinBM3does notfall,itrises:r=0.44;R2=0.19;p=0.047(Figure6,topchart). ItishypothesizedthatthemagnitudeofPeabodyswithdrawalssimplyobscuresKayentaseffecton BM3(Figure7). ItisnotablethatthedatapointrepresentingKayentassmallestvolumeofgroundwaterwithdrawn inanysingleyear(381acrefeetin2008;Figure6,topchart,circledinblue)correlateswiththeBM3s largestwaterleveldecline(161.9ftbelowlandsurface). Conversely,Kayentaslargestwithdrawals(708afin1987and690afin1988)correlatewiththe someofthewellshighestwaterlevels(131and135ftbelowlandsurface,respectively).

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Figure6.ComparisonofWaterLevelinBM3andKayentawithdrawals8,19842008

Inthetopchart,thevalueforwaterlevelinBM3(yaxis)isshownasfeetbelowlandsurface,soasthevalue increases,thewaterlevelisfalling.KayentawithdrawaldataarecollectedfromtheUSGSBlackMesaMonitoring Programsannualreports,19842010;withdrawaldataarenotavailableforwateryears1992,1993,1997,2006. WaterleveldatacollectedfromBMMP(2011).

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ComparisonofPeabodyandKayentaWithdrawals,19842005
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Figure7.PeabodyandKayentawithdrawals,19842005.WithdrawaldatafromMacy(2010). WaterLevelinBM3andPeabodyWithdrawals9 BecausetherecordforwithdrawalsfromtheKayentawellsystembeginsin1984,theregressionof BM3waterlevelstoPeabodywithdrawalsisperformedforthesameperiod(Figure8,topchart).The regressionconflictswithOSMsmodelbasedconclusion:arelativelystrong,linearrelationshipexists:as thePeabodyswithdrawalsincrease,thewaterlevelinBM3falls:r=0.75;R2=0.56;p<0.0001. Figure8(bottomchart)demonstratesthisrelationshiptemporallyfortheperiod(19842005). Dataforwateryear1985(circledinred)isastrongindicatoroftheminesinfluenceonKayentas waterlevel.Recallthat,in1985,Peabodyceaseditsgroundwaterwithdrawalspipelineoperationsfor sixmonthsduetomaintenanceattheMohaveGeneratingStation,withdrawingitssmallestvolumeofin anysingleyear(2,520acrefeet).FortheperiodthattheBlackMesaKayentaMinewasfully operational,1985isastatisticaloutlierforPeabodywithdrawalstheonlyyearbetween1972and2005 thatthemineceasedgroundwaterpumping(wateryears20062008cannotbeincludedintheanalysis duecessationofgroundwaterwithdrawalsattheBlackMesaMine.SeeAppendixAforanexplanation oftheseoutliers.ItislikelythatPeabodysdecreaseinwithdrawalsbeginningin2006donotyetappear asrecoveryinBM3giventheprincipleofsuperposition). Fortheperiod19842005,wateryear1985expressesthehighestwaterlevelinBM3foranysingle year(120ft.belowlandsurface)correlatingwithPeabodyslowestvolumeofgroundwaterwithdrawals.
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ThevalueforwaterlevelinBM3isshownasfeetbelowlandsurface,soasthevalueincreases,thewaterlevelis falling. Withdrawal data collected from the USGS Black Mesa Monitoring Program annual reports, 19842010. Peabody withdrawals for water years 20062008 are not included in the analysis because they are statistical outliers.

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Figure8.ComparisonofWaterLevelinBM3andPeabodyWithdrawals,19842005

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Indicatorsusingboxplotswithoutliers10 TheboxplotofPeabodywithdrawals(Figure9,topboxplot)demonstratesthatwateryear1985 (highlightedinred)isastatisticaloutlierfortheperiod19722005. Concurrently,theboxplotofwaterlevelsinBM3(middleboxplot)demonstratesthat1985isthe onlyyearoutside2standarddeviationsofthemeanwaterlevel(19842008). Finally,theboxplotforKayentawithdrawals(bottomboxplot)showsthat1985isnearthemean forwithdrawals,andmoreover,in2008,Kayentawithdrew381acrefeet(astatisticaloutlier)yetBM3 felltoitslowestlevelonrecord,whichisinexplicableifKayentaiscausing87%ofthedrawdown.

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OSMsconclusiononthesourceofKayentaswaterleveldecline In1999,PeabodyshydrologyconsultantsarguedthatThedrawdownatBM3appearstobealmost entirelyrelatedtolocalpumpingatKayentaandissimilarinall[simulatedpumping]scenarios (HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999:616). In2005,actualconditionsdivergedfromthesimulations,OSMthenexplained: Approximately423acrefeetwerewithdrawnfromtheNaquiferatthislocationbytheBIA and Navajo Nation wells [i.e. the Kayenta well system] in 2004. The Kayenta municipal pumping currently accounts for 34% of all the nonindustrial pumpage from the confined portionoftheaquiferandapproximately15%ofallmunicipalproductionfromtheNaquifer (confined and unconfined). Therefore, lowering of potentiometric surface in the area near BM3canbeattributedtomunicipaluseaswellasPWCCpumping.(OSM2006:5) OSMseemstobeimplyingthat,in2004,themagnitudeofKayentaswithdrawals(423acrefeet)is profoundbecauseitaccountsfor34%of1,240acrefeetcomprisingtotaltribalwithdrawals(itisnotable thesewithdrawalsaredistributedthroughouttheentireconfinedportionoftheNaquifer). Thisimplicationlacksempiricalreasoning;arguably,itlacksunderstandingofbasichydrogeological principles,forin2004,Peabodywithdrew4,370acrefeetfromonecentralizedlocationintheconfined NaquifermorethantentimesthevolumeofKayentas423acrefeet. In2005,OSMalsoconcludedthatthematerialdamagecriterionforstructuralstabilityissubjectto reviewandmodification,butthatitwouldcontinuetobeusedforOSMs2005evaluation(OSM2006: 4).Thatyear,BM3was3.6ftbelowthetopoftheNaquifer(TruiniandMacy2007). Toclarify,in1989,PeabodysPHCconcludedthat85%ofthedrawdownatKayentawouldbecaused bymunicipalwithdrawals(PCCPHC1985),andin1990,OSMconcludedthatFortheretobea reductioninwellproductionorforstructuraldamagetooccurthepotentiometricsurfacewouldhave tobedrawndowntobelowthetopoftheconfinedportionoftheaquiferItcanbeseenthatatno timedoesthepotentiometricsurfacedroptothislevelanywherewithintheaffectedareaforany scenario.Theclosestthatthepotentiometricsurfacegetstothetopoftheconfinedaquiferforscenario B[i.e.theproposedpumpingrate]is366feetatKeamsCanyonintheyear2052(OSMEIS1990:IV28). By2005,OSMsthresholdformaterialdamagetotheNaquifersstructuralstabilityhadbeen exceededby103.6ft.,andthepotentiometricsurfacehadfallenbelowthetopoftheaquifer. Nonetheless,OSMconcluded:materialdamagetothehydrologicbalanceoftheNaquifer,causedby mining,withrespecttomaintainingthepotentiometricheadabovethetopoftheNaquifer,hasnot occurred(OSM2006:7).

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TubaCity/Moenkopi Drawdown at Tuba City/Moenkopi is due entirely to community withdrawals. Total decline from the prestress period to 2007 will be 51 feet: OSM concludes that under all alternatives there would be negligibleshortandlongtermimpactsintheTubaCity/Moenkopiareaduetominerelatedpumping (OSMEIS1990:IV29). USGSmonitorssixwellswithinafivemileradiusofTubaCityandMoenkopi.However,municipal withdrawalsoccuratthreeclusteredNavajoTribalUtilityAuthority(NTUA)wells.Fromtheprestress periodthrough2008,thesewellsdeclinedby31ft,27.7ft,and27.4ft(Figure10).Meandeclineis28.7 ft;drawdownwasoverestimatedby44%. ThreeotherwellsmonitoredbyUSGSarelocatedeastandsouthofMoenkopi.Thewaterlevelin BIAwells3K325andTubaCityRareMetalsincreased6.2ftand4.9ftfortheperiod,whileBIA3T333 declined6.3ft(TruiniandMacy2008).Themeanwaterlevelforthethreewellsis+1.6ft.The predicteddrawdownof51ftwasoverestimatedby103%(Figure11).Thus,atTubaCity/Moenkopi, themodeloverestimatedtheimpactonmunicipalwithdrawalsonwaterlevelby44%to105%;mean drawdownofthesixwellsis13.6ft,a73%overestimation.

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Figure10.TubaCityNTUA1(top),3,(middle),and4(bottom.BMMP2010)

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Figure11.TubaCityBIA3K325(top),3T333(middle),andRareMetals(BMMP2010)

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NocorrelationbetweenTubaCitywithdrawalsandTubaCitywaterlevels Becausetheactualwaterleveldeclinewasoverestimated(44%inthreeNTUAwells,103%inthree BIAwells,and73%insixareawells),itisreasonabletoassumethatthemodelsprojectionformunicipal withdrawalswasoverestimatedbyanapproximatelyequivalentamount. MunicipalwithdrawalsfromtheTubaCitywellsystemwererecordedin23of24yearsforthe period19852008(withdrawaldatawereunavailablein2006).Forthisperiod,projectedwithdrawals totaled27,787acrefeet,foranaverageof1,208af/y11(Figure12). Actualwithdrawalsforthesameperiodtotaled24,730acrefeet,averaging1,075af/y.Actual withdrawalswereoverestimatedbyatotalof3,057acrefeet,or133acrefeetperyear(11%). Thus,assumingalinearrelationshipbetweenwithdrawalsandwaterlevel,thewaterleveldecline atTubaCity(overestimatedby44%105%,ormean73%)doesnotcorrelatewithanequivalent overestimationofmunicipalwithdrawals(11%).

Figure12.MunicipalWithdrawalsfromtheTubaCityWellSystem,19852008.
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DischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpringandtoMoenkopiWash Becausechangesinwaterlevelcorrelatewithchangeinspringdischarge,theoverestimatedwater leveldeclineshouldcorrelatewithanoverestimateddeclineinspringdischarge(theactualdeclineat MoenkopiSchoolSpringshouldbelessthanthepredicted12%decline). Peabodys1985PHCaddressesminerelatedimpactstoNaquiferspringsinasingleparagraph: Outflows tospringsandstreamsfromtheNaquiferareprojectedbytheUSGSmodel to decline 150 acrefeet due to Peabody pumpage and 330 acrefeet because of Tribal communitypumpage.Overall,thiswillamounttoaboutasixpercentreductioninstream andspringflow.Althoughtheprojecteddeclinesaresmall,itisunlikelythattheywillever returntopre1965flowlevelsfollowingcessationofthePeabodypumpagebecauseTribal community pumpage will continue and is presently causing a majority of the flow reductions.(PCCPHC1985:46) Subsequently,OSMs1989CHIAconcluded: No material damage to spring discharge to the hydrologic balance [sic] is projected to occurforNaquiferspringdischarge.(OSMCHIA1989:75) Aswell,OSMs1990FinalEISconcluded: Spring discharges in Pasture Canyon would not change as a result of minerelated withdrawals. Simulated outflow from the Naquifer to Moenkopi Wash, west of Black Mesa through Blue Canyon to Moenkopi, would decrease by 1 to 2 percent under all pumping scenarios. Community pumping would have a slightly greater effect on the outflow to Moenkopi Wash than would varying the duration of pumping at the mine; therefore, the short and longterm impact of the mine on Moenkopi Wash baseflow dischargefromtheNaquiferwouldbenegligible.(OSMEIS1990:IV28) TheUSGSmodelandNaquiferdischarge Itisimperativetorecognizethat,whentheUSGSmodelwasdeveloped,thebasiccomponentsof theNaquiferswaterbudgetwere(andcontinuetobe)highlyuncertain:thewaterbudgetcouldnotbe calculatedbecauseinflowandoutflowwereuncertain;verticalleakagewasignored;furtherstudies wereneededtoverifyassumptions;andaswithallgroundwatermodels,futureprecipitationand withdrawalrateswereunknowable.Mostdatawerenotavailableformostnodes.Somedatamaybe incorrectorbesubjecttomultipleinterpretations(Eychaner1983).Divergencebetweensimulated andactualwaterlevelswasexpectedtooccur,andtheUSGSexplainedthattheaccuracyofprojected waterlevelsisuncertain(BrownandEychaner1988).Finally,theUSGSexplainedthatthemodel simulationsarebetterusedtocompareeffectsofdifferentdevelopmentplansratherthanestimate actualfuturewaterlevelsandwaterbudgetcomponents(BrownandEychaner1988).

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Toclarify,theUSGSgroundwatermodelisnotcapableofaccuratelypredictingwaterlevelatany particularwell,itisincapableofpredictingspringdischargefromanyparticularspring,anditis incapableofpredictingoutflowtostreams(BrownandEychaner1988;Eychaner1983,1981). ThisrecognitionreflectstheuncertaintiesthatcontinuetocharacterizecurrentknowledgeoftheN aquifer,forin1999Peabodysownhydrologyconsultantsexplainedthat,becausespringandstream dischargeispoorlyunderstood,aregionalscalemodelcannotcurrentlybedevelopedforthebasinthat willaccuratelypredicttheimpactsofpumpingonindividualsprings(HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999:5 23).Thus,theyconcludedthatdevelopingaqualitativeestimateofthedischarge(e.g.,0.1cfs),or absolutechangeindischarge,isnotfeasible(HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999:524).Infact,no groundwatermodeleverdevelopedfortheNaquifercanaccuratelysimulatespringorstreamdischarge fromtheNaquifer(HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999;BrownandEychaner1988;Eychaner1983,1981). Therelationshipbetweenspringsandwaterlevel Springdischargeisreducedwhenthepotentiometricsurface(i.e.head)ofanaquiferdeclines. Recallthatanygroundwaterwithdrawnfromanaquiferaltersitsequilibriumand,initially,100%ofthe withdrawalswillcomefromstorage.Overtime,however,giventhePrincipleofSuperposition,the groundwaterwithdrawnfromtheaquiferwillreduceitspotentiometricsurface;aquiferdischargeis affectedastheconeofdepressionradiatesoutandawayfromthepumpingsourceandreaches dischargelocations.Aswithdrawalsslowlybecomebalancedbythe(1)reduceddischarge,(2)induced recharge,or(3)somecombinationofboth(thisisknownascapture).Newequilibriumisreached whenthecaptureisequaltotheamountofgroundwaterwithdrawnfromthesystem(Bredehoeft2002, 1997;BalleauandMayer1988;Bredehoeftetal.1982;Theis1940). Dischargefromspringsisproportionaltopotentiometrichead.Ananalysisofgroundwater quantityisbasicallyadeterminationofwhereandhowmuchthepotentiometricheadwouldchangeas aresultofimposedactivitiesandthecorrespondingchangesinspringdischargeratesresultingfrom theheadchanges(OSMEIS1990:IV20). NaquiferSprings FourspringsaremonitoredbytheUSGSmonitoringprogram:(1)MoenkopiSchoolSpring,(2)Burro Spring,(3)PastureCanyonSpring,and(4)UnnamedSpringnearDennehotso(Figure13).

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Figure13.MapofspringmonitoredbytheUSGS(inTruiniandMacy2006) PeabodysPHC,andOSMs1989CHIAand1990EISexplainthatspringdischargeintheareaof Moenkopimaybereducedby12%;however,thiswouldbecausedentirelybymunicipalwithdrawals fromtheTubaCitywellsystem.Inallfiveofthegroundwatermodelspumpingscenarios,minerelated withdrawalswouldhavenoeffectonNaquifersprings(OSMEIS1990:IV28). Furthermore,theUSGSgroundwatermodelprojectsthatthenearestmeasureableimpactrelated toPeabodyswithdrawals(1footofwaterleveldecline)comesnocloserthanfifteenfromTuba City/Moenkopianddoesnotoccuruntiltheyear2052.

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CHIAcriterionformaterialdamagetospringdischarge Basedonthesimulationresultsofthegroundwatermodel,OSMdevelopedthematerialdamage criterionfordischargefromsprings:dischargefromspringsmustnotbereducedbymorethan10%in responsetominerelatedwithdrawals;potentiometricheadmustnotfallbelow100ft.fromthetopof theNaquifersothattheaveragerateofdischargefromsprings,minusthemeasurementerrorof10%, willbemaintained(OSMCHIA1989:55). Evaluationofthecriterion AccordingtoOSM,theevaluationofthematerialdamagecriterionforspringsisbasedon computersimulationofchangesinareasofhydraulicheadneartheconfined/unconfinedboundaryof theNaquifer,notspecificspringdischargepoints(OSM2006:8).Toclarify,OSMdoesnotuseactual springdischargemonitoringdatainitsevaluation.Rather,itreliesuponsimulationsoftheUSGS groundwatermodelwhichisincapableofsimulatingdischargefromspringstomakeitsconclusions. Further,itisimportanttorecognizethattheUSGSgroundwatermodelitselfisnotupdatedwith eachyearsmonitoringdata,itisnotrunannuallytoevaluateeachyearssimulatedimpacts,andthe modelsperformanceisnotevaluatedonaregularschedule(thegroundwatermodelisnota responsibility,perse,ofthehydrologistsmonitoringtheNaquifer).Rather,themodelisupdatedand testedbyUSGSmodelerswhenthefundingisavailabletodoso(recallthatUSGSappliestotheBureau ofIndianAffairseveryyeartofundthemonitoringprogramitself).Thus,OSMsannualevaluationof materialdamagecriteriaisbaseduponthemostrecentsimulation,wheneveritoccurred12. Toclarify,becausethemodelcannotsimulatespringdischarge,thedamagethresholdforspringsis baseduponbythemodelsmostrecentlyrunsimulationsofchangeinhydraulichead(thisstudyhas alreadydemonstratedthemodelspoorpredictionaccuracyinregardtohead).
OSMsCHIAcriterionforevaluatingNaquiferdischargetostreams(OSMCHIA1989)hasneverbeenevaluated usingthemethodoriginaldesignedbyOSM.Recallthattheevaluationofthiscriterionisbasedupontheresultsof thesimulationmodel;moreover,iftheindicatorthresholdiscrossed,OSMrequiresfurtherstudiestodiscernthe causeofthedeclinebeforecorrectiveactionsaretaken(OSMCHIA1989;OSMCHIAAddendum1990).OSMs mostrecentevaluationoftheNaquiferwasperformedin2006,andtheagencyexplainedthatthemodelsmost recentsimulationrunoccurredin1994.Thus,in2006,OSMsevaluationof,andconclusionsregarding groundwaterdischargetostreamswerebaseduponasimulationofconditionsin1994(OSM2006;ofcourse,the evaluationalsoassumesthat,technically,the1994modelsimulationwasaccurateand,theoretically,thatthe uncertaintiesinnaturalsystemscanbereplacedbythecertaintyofmodelsimulations).
12

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Through2006,theUSGSmonitoringreportsusedlogarithmiccharts(Figure14)toillustratespring dischargefromtheNaquifer,andnoappreciabletrendswereapparentthroughthattime. Concurrently,the2006OSMreportconcludedthatmaterialdamagetotheNaquiferspringshadnot occurredinrelationtominerelatedwithdrawals(OSM2006;alsoseeOSMEIS2004,2006).

Figure14.USGSslogarithmicchartofspringdischarge(inTruiniandMacy2006) ItwaslaterrevealedtoUSGShydrologistsworkingwithBlackMesaMonitoringProgram,however, thatthelogarithmicchartsunintentionallyconcealednegativetrends(Inlogarithmiccharts,theunitof measure,circledinred(Figure14)increasesexponentiallyratherthanincrementally.Assuch,ifthe measuredvaluehassmallchangeswithinthehigherrangeofvalues,asinthecaseofMoenkopiSchool Spring,trendsmaybeinadvertentlyconcealed,whichisevidentwhencomparingdischargedatafor MoenkopiSchoolSpringinanincrementalchart,Figure15,below).Subsequently,USGSbegan illustratingspringdischargeusingincrementalcharts(TruiniandMacy2008,2007;Macy2010,2009). MoenkopiSchoolSpring RecallthatMoenkopiSchoolSpringislocatedneartheHopivillageofLowerMoenkopi,alongthe bankofMoenkopiWash(Figure15),approximately60milesdownstreamofthemine,anditisinthe westernmostportionoftheunconfinedNaquifer.AccordingtoPeabodysconsultants,Drawdownat TubaCityissolelycausedbypumpingfromlocalcommunitywellsTherearenoimpactsatTubaCity fromPWCCpumpageineitherthe2Dor3Dmodel(HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999:87and88). Figure17demonstratesthattherateofdischarge(ingallonsperminute)variedthroughoutthe periodofrecord(19872009):thehighestdischarge(16gpm)occurredthefirstyearofrecordand lowestdischarge(8.0gpm)occurredduringthemostrecentyearofrecord).Meandischargeforthe periodis11.81gpm,whichis26.2%lowerthanthe1987rate(exceedingtheCHIAcriterionby16.2%).

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MoenkopiSchoolSpringDischarge,19872009
18 16 14 12 10 8 6 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 R=0.5475

Figure15.DischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpring,19872008(datafromMacy2010). TheregressionofdischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpringtoPeabodywithdrawals13(Figure16) demonstratesastrong,indirect,linearrelationshipbetweendecreasingdischargeandincreasing Peabodywithdrawals:r=0.84;R2=0.71;p<0.0001.

RegressionofSpringDischargeandPeabodyWithdrawals
4,800 PeabodyWihtdrawals(af/y) 4,600 4,400 4,200 4,000 3,800 3,600 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 MoenkopiSchoolSpringDischarge(gpm) n=15 r=0.84 R=0.71 p<0.0001

Figure16.RegressionofMoenkopiSchoolSpringdischargeandPeabodyWithdrawals
13

Analysisincludestheperiod19872005.Springdischargemeasurementsbeganin1987.Peabodywithdrawals forwateryears2006,2007,2008arestatisticaloutliersandarenotincludedintheregression(Peabodyreduced itswithdrawals70%beginningin2006duetoclosureofMGS,BlackMesaPipeline,andBlackMesaMine).See AppendixAforthestatisticalexplanationfortheoutliers.

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Toclarify,withthedatathatareavailable,71%ofthevariabilityindischargefromMoenkopiSchool Spring(adecliningtrend)canbeaccountedforonthebasisofthevariabilityinPeabodywithdrawals(an increasingtrend).Thenullhypothesis(PeabodywithdrawalsdonotaffectdischargefromMoenkopi SchoolSpring)isrejectedbecausethechancethatthedemonstratedrelationship(R2)doesnotactually existislessthan0.01%(p). AlthoughOSMhasnotevaluatedthematerialdamagecriteriasince2006(wateryear2005),its conclusionthatminerelatedgroundwaterwithdrawalshavehadnoeffectonNaquiferspringshasnot changed(OSMCHIA2008). MoenkopiSchoolSpringandTubaCityWithdrawals MoenkopiSchoolSpringiswithinfivemilesofthewellsthatcomprisetheTubaCitywellsystem. TheregressionofspringdischargetoTubaCitywithdrawals(Figure17)demonstratethat,fortheperiod ofrecord,thereisnostatisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweenspringdischargeandlocal withdrawals:r=0.30;R2=0.09;p=0.28.

RegressionofSpringDischargeandTubaCityWithdrawals
1350 1300 1250 1200 1150 1100 1050 1000 950 900 850 800 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 MoenkopiSchoolSpringDischarge(gpm) TubaCityWithdrawals(af/y) R=0.0893

15

16

Figure17.RegressionofMoenkopiSchoolSpringdischarge&TubaCityWithdrawals

Toclarify,withthedatathatareavailable,9%ofthevariabilityindischargefromMoenkopiSchool Spring(adecliningtrend)canbeaccountedforonthebasisofthevariabilityinTubaCitywithdrawals (anincreasingtrend).However,thenullhypothesis(TubaCitywithdrawalsdonotaffectdischargefrom MoenkopiSchoolSpring)isnotrejectedbecausethereisa28%chance(p)thatthedemonstrated relationship(R2)occurredbychance.

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MoenkopiSchoolSpringandTubaCityPrecipitation TheregressionofdischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpringandlocalprecipitationatTubaCity(Figure 18)demonstratethatthereisnostatisticallysignificantrelationshipbetweendischargeandrainfallin thearea:thenullhypothesis(PrecipitationatTubaCitydoesnotaffectdischargefromMoenkopiSchool Spring)isnotrejectedbecausethereisa17%chance(p)thatthedemonstratedrelationship(R2) occurredbychance.

RegressionofSpringDischargeandTubaCityPrecip
12 10 Precipitation(in) 8 6 4 2 0 7 8 9 R=0.1148

Figure18.RegressionofMoenkopiSchoolSpringdischarge&TubaCityPrecipitation(precipitationdata fortheTubaCityweatherstationfromtheDesertResearchInstitute:http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/). OSMonPrecipitationandSpringDischarge OSMalsofoundnodiscernablerelationshipbetweenprecipitationanddischargeintheTuba City/Moenkopiarea(OSMCHIA1989).Infact,OSMfoundaninverserelationship:the(premining) periodofhigherprecipitationcorrelatedwithlowflowcharacteristicswhilethe(postmining)periodof lowprecipitationcorrelatedwithhighflowcharacteristics: Theinconsistencies notedaboveindicatethatotherfactorswhichinfluencerunoffwithin thebasineffectivelymaskanyconsistentrelationbetweenprecipitationonBlackMesaand dischargeatMoenkopiWashatMoenkopi,atleastfortherelativelyshortperiodofrecord analyzed.(OSMCHIA1989:313)

10 11 12 13 14 15 MoenkopiSchoolSpringDischarge(gpm)

16

17

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ForestLake The maximum waterlevel decline at Forest Lake will occur in 2007; it will be 40 ft. below the 1985 waterlevel.Waterlevelswillrecovertothe1985levelin2009.Totaldeclinefromtheprestressperiod to 2007 will be 148 feet. OSM concludes that the impacts in the area due to mine related pumping wouldbeminoroverboththeshortandthelongterm(OSMEIS1990:IV29). ForestLake(BIAwell4T523,completedin1980)istheclosestcommunitytothePeabodylease area.Directlysouthofthemine(seeFigure1),itwasexpectedtoincurthegreatestminerelatedwater leveldeclineofallthecommunitiesonBlackMesa.Givenproximitytothemineandsimilar hydrogeologicalcharacteristics,itisintuitivethatthemodelpredictionsforForestLakewouldbemore accuratethandistantcommunitieswithdifferenthydrogeologicalcharacteristics;largediscrepancies wouldbeindicativeofsignificantmodelerrors. TheUSGSmodelestimatedtheprestresswaterlevelattheForestLakewellat1,096ft.belowland surface(Macy2010);by1985,thewaterlevelhaddeclined28ft.(1,124ft.belowlandsurface). However,duetotheclosureoftheMohaveGeneratingStation,thewithdrawalreductioninthemodel simulationoccurredattheendof2005ratherthan2006:theaquiferhadonefullyeartorecoverin comparisontothesimulation.Withtheextrafullyearofrecovery,maximumwaterleveldeclineshould haveoccurredpriorto2007(aspredicted),shouldbelessthanthemodelpredicted,andrecoverytothe 1985waterlevelshouldhaveoccurredearlierthan2009(aspredicted).Asignificantlackofrecoveryby 2009wouldindicateerrorintheconceptualmodel. In2007,thewaterlevelatForestLakewas1,189ft.belowlandsurface(65ft.lowerthanthe1985 waterlevel;seeBMMP2010;TruiniandMacy2008).Whilethepredicted40ft.declinebetween1985 and2007wasoffbymerely25ft,thisisanunderestimationofminerelatedimpactsatForestLakeby 62.5%.BecausetheForestLakewell(NTUA1)wasonlycompletedin1980,waterleveldeclinefromthe prestressperiodto1984wasestimatedbythemodelat108ft(BrownandEychaner1988:41). However,USGSrecordedtotaldrawdownfortheperiod1965to2007at93.8ft. Because65ftofthetotaldeclineoccurredbetween1984and2007,only28.8ftofdrawdownat ForestLakeoccurredpriorto1984.Thus,themodelestimateof108ftdeclineoccurringpriorto1985 wasanoverestimationoftheactualdrawdownthatoccurredpriorto1985of73.3%,expressing significantconceptualorinputdataerror.

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Figure19.GroundwaterlevelsatForestLakeNTUA1(BMMP2010) RecoveryatForestLake

WaterlevelatForestLakedidnotbegintorecoverfollowingtheearlyreductionin2006.Infact, waterlevelsremainedapproximately1,190ftbelowlandsurfacethrough2008.In2009theyear waterlevelwaspredictedtorecoverytothe1985levelheadatForestLakehadrecoveredonly3ofthe predicted40ft(oractual66ft)decline.GiventhevariationofwaterlevelatForestLakeovertime,at thetimeofthisstudy,itisnotyetapparentofmaximumdeclinehasbeenreachedorifanyrecoveryhas occurred.

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Pinon DrawdownatPinonwillbesimilartoForestLake,butcommunitywithdrawalswillhaveagreatereffect. Maximumwaterlevelwilldeclinewillbein2007,being34feetbelowthe1985levels;totaldeclinefrom the prestress period to 2007 will be 106 feet. OSM concludes that impacts in the Pinon area from minerelatedpumpingwouldbeminoroverboththeshortandlongterm(OSMEIS1990:IV29). TheprestresswaterlevelatPinonwas743ftbelowlandsurface;in1985itwas803.3ftbelowland surface(adeclineof60.3ft).In2007,thewaterlevelwasmeasuredat904.3ftbelowlandsurface,a declineof101ftfromthe1985level:drawdownforthisperiodwasunderestimatedby67ft(97%). Between1965and2007,waterleveldeclined161.3ft,anunderestimationof55.3ft(52%).

Figure20.GroundwaterlevelsatPinonwellPM6(BMMP2010) RecoveryatPinon

Waterlevelcontinuedtodeclineafterthereductionofindustrialwithdrawals.In2008and2009, waterlevelsweremeasuredat904.9ftbelowlandsurface(BMMP2010;Macy2009).Atthetimethis studywasconducted,itwasunclearwhetherornotthewaterlevelatPinonhadyetreachedits maximumdeclineorifrecoveryhadinitiated.

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GROUNDWATERQUALITY ThesandstoneaquiferssupplyingwatertothePeabodywellscontainavastquantityin storage,whichisisolatedfromwaterintherelativelyshallowlocalwellsonthemesaby impermeableformationsoverlyingtheNavajo,Kayenta,andotherdeepformations.

UnitedStatesBureauofReclamation(USBR1971) EnvironmentalStatementfortheBlackMesaKayentaMine EffectsofinducedleakageofpoorerqualitywaterfromtheoverlyingDaquifersystemonN aquiferwaterquality.ThewaterqualityfromPeabodyandTribalwellscompletedintheN aquiferhasbeenperiodicallymonitoredbytheUSGSsince1967.ThethrustoftheNaquifer water quality monitoring effort has been towards assessing if vertical leakage from the overlyingDaquifersystemissignificant.Theconcentrationofdissolvedsolids,chloride,and sulfateionsintheDaquiferisabout7times,11times,and30timesgreater,respectively, than in the Naquifer. If the Naquifer water level declines are inducing large amounts of vertical leakage from the Daquifer system, there should be marked changes with time in theseparameterconcentrations. PeabodyWesternCoalCompany(PCCPHC1985:46) DeterminationofProbablyHydrologicConsequences PeabodysPHCconcludesthatthereisnoevidencetosuggestthatsignificantverticalleakageis occurringfromtheDaquifersystemintotheNaquifersystem(PCCPHC1985:46).OSMsubsequently generatedthematerialdamagecriterionforwaterquality:avalueofleakagefromtheoverlyingD aquifer,causedbyminerelatedwithdrawals,isnottoexceed10%. Likethecriterionforstructuralstabilityandspringdischarge,theUSGSgroundwatermodel simulationsprovidethebasisfortheevaluationofwaterquality:theestimatedprestressleakagefrom theDaquiferwasestimatedat180acrefeetperyear.Thesimulationofmunicipalpumpingonly (ScenarioE)showsleakageof239acrefeetperyear,andthesimulationofmunicipalandproposed industrialpumping(ScenarioB)showsleakageincreasingto243af/y.Thus,becauseminerelated groundwaterpumpingwouldincreaseleakagefromtheoverlyingDaquiferbymerely4af/y,anyeffect onwaterqualitywouldbenegligibleduetoa2millionto1dilutionandnomaterialdamagetowater qualitywouldoccur(OSMCHIA1989:74). OSMreiteratestheirfindingsintheFinalEIS:Thisisfurthersubstantiatedbythe1989USGS monitoringprogramprogressreport(HartandSottilare1989)whichconcludesthatnoimpactsare observablefromleakageoftheDaquifertotheNaquifer.OSMconcludesthatthepotentialfor degradationisconsideredtobeminoroverboththeshortandthelongterm(OSMEIS1990:IV34).

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OSMupheldthisconclusionin2006:materialdamagetotheNaquifer,causedbymining,withrespect toleakagefromtheoverlyingDaquifer,hasnotoccurred(OSM2006). However,OSMoffersnoexplanationregardingexactlyhowthecriterionforchemicalqualitywillbe evaluated.TheUSGSmodelisamathematicalflowmodel;itwasnotdevelopedinconsiderationofany chemicalqualityparameters,andithasnohydrogeochemicalcapacity. Rather,OSMpredeterminedthatminingwillnotdiminishthewaterqualitybecauseallfiveofthe modelspumpingscenariosshowednegligiblevolumesofleakagefromtheoverlyingDaquifer.In short,becausethemodelpredeterminedthatminingwillnotinduceleakage,theminewillnotharmthe Naquiferschemicalquality.Thus,anyfutureevaluationofthecriterionisunnecessary. Discussion Thequantificationofleakagebetweenaquifersthatarethousandsoffeetdeeprequiresintensive investigationintoverticalhydraulicconductivitiesbetweentheaquifers,watermeasurementsfromthe aquifers,andotherhydrogeologicalinformationthatarenotavailable.Moreover,theDaquiferisnot monitoredandinvestigationofitsleakagecharacteristicsdidnotbeginuntil2003(Truiniand Longsworth2003;TruiniandMacy2005). OSMacknowledges,NeithertheUSGSnorPWCCmonitorswaterlevelsintheconfinedportionof theDaquiferaspartofitsmonitoringeffort.Daquiferwaterlevelinformationwouldbeneededto directlyevaluatethechangeinleakagefromtheDaquifertotheNaquifer(OSM2006:7). InreviewofUSGSmonitoringdata,twowells(RoughRockPM5andKeamsCanyonPM2)haveTDS levelsexceedingtheEPAsrecommendeddrinkingwaterlimit,andappreciablyhigherlevelsof chlorideat97mg/Land113mg/L,respectively(OSM2006). In2007,theconcentrationofarsenicinKeamsCanyonPM2wasmeasuredat40.3g/L,exceeding theEPAsstandardforMaximumContaminantLevel(MCL:10g/L)(TruiniandMacy2007). TheUSGSmonitoringreportfor20072008(Macy2009)illustratessignificantincreasingtrendsTDS, Chloride,andSulfateatMoenkopiSchoolSpring(Figure21). However,OSMconcludedthatminingactivitiesgenerateonlyanadditional4acrefeetofleakage peryeartotheNaquiferand,asaconsequence,materialdamagetothehydrologicbalanceoftheN aquifer,inresponsetomining,hasnotandwillnotoccur(OSMCHIA1989).

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Figure21.Waterchemistrydataforselectsprings(inMacy2009)

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REACHOFPEABODYSWITHDRAWALS Figure22providesthewaterlevelrecordforsixNTUAandBIAwellsthroughouttheconfinedand (assumed)unconfinedportionoftheNaquifer(waterlevelsareshownasfeetbelowlandsurface). TheredcirclesmayhighlightwaterlevelsfollowingPeabodys6monthcessationofwithdrawals;the reddashedlineindicatesPeabodys70%reductioninwithdrawalsbeginningin2006. ItishypothesizedthattheconfinedportionoftheNaquiferreachesfarthersouththanhas previouslybeenrecognized,andthewaterlevelrecoveryinthesewellshasnotregistered,asitdidin 1985(HillandWhetten1986),duetotheprincipleofsuperposition(Bredehoeftetal.1982;Theis1940). Indeed,inthesubsequent1999modelbyPeabodyconsultants,theconfinedboundaryoftheN aquiferextendsfurthertothesouthwesttowardsGoldtoothandsoutheasttowardsjadito[sic]. Differencesinboundarylocationsrangefrom10to25miles(HSIGeoTransandWEHE1999:710). Figure19,below,illustratesthattheconspicuousgroundwaterrecoveryspikeasfarsouthas Goldtooth.

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LonghouseValley(north) ShontoSoutheast(west)

WhiteMesaArch(west)RoughRock9Y92(northeast)

TubaCity3K325(southwest)Goldtooth(southwest)

Figure22.WaterLevelDataforFiveNTUA/BIAWells14(BMMP2010)
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Longhouse Valley and Shonto Southeast, north and west of the wellfield, are continuing declining trends. ThoughwaterlevelsarevariableinwellsWhiteMesaArchandRoughRock(9Y92)bothexpresstheconspicuous singleyearrecoveryspikeinwaterlevelsfollowingwateryear1985(highlightedinred),theyearthatPeabodys groundwaterwithdrawalsceasedfor6monthsduetomaintenanceattheMohaveGeneratingStation.TubaCity 3K325remainsvariable5ft.,andGoldtoothexpressesaslightdecreasingtrend,yetthepost1985recoveryspike isevidentasfarsouthasthesetwowells.ManyotherwellsthroughouttheNaquiferalsodemonstratethe1985

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SUMMARY Thisstudyfoundthattheextraordinaryrangeofhydrogeologicaluncertaintiesuponwhich PeabodysPHCisbasedunderminestheconclusivenessofitsdeterminationofminingrelatedimpacts. Thisfindingissupportedviatheconvergenceofthefollowingevidence: (1) TheUSGSgroundwatermodelischaracterizedbyahighlevelofhydrogeological uncertainties(recharge,leakage,anddischarge)andlimitedsimulationcapacities(Brown andEychaner1988;Eychaner1983).Theseuncertaintiesexplainwhy: PeabodysPHCandOSMsCHIAandEISdidnotpredictanygroundwaterparameterswith anyappreciablelevelofaccuracy.Thisshouldnotbesurprisinggiventhenumberoftimes themodelhadtoberecalibratedduringitsfirstdecadeofuse(i.e.itwasfirstcalibratedto matchactualobservations1981butdivergencewasapparentby1982,in1985,andin1987, requiringrecalibrationeachtime.Itisunknownifrecalibrationalsooccurredwhenthe modelwasupdatedin1994and1996). (3) TheUSGSgroundwatermodel,PeabodysPHC,andOSMsCHIAandEISfailedtocapturethe essentiallylinearrelationshipbetweenwaterleveldeclineandspringdischarge.Recharge, leakage,anddischargecontinuetobepoorlyunderstood.TheimpactofPeabody withdrawalsweregenerallyunderestimatedandtheeffectofmunicipalwithdrawalswere generallyoverestimated.Theboundariesoftheconfinedandunconfinedaquiferboundary areasareinquestionandthereissignificantreasontosuspectthattheconfinedportionof theaquiferreachessouthofGoldtooth.Therearerobustindicatorsthatminingimpacts havehadafargreaterimpactontheNaquifershydrologicbalancethanhasheretofore beenrecognizedoracknowledged. In2001,theUSGSconcludedthatnewstudiesinvestigatingrecharge,leakage,anddischarge wereneededbeforeinvestingmoretimeinrefiningtheexistingUSGSgroundwatermodel (Thomas2002).In2008,aUSGShydrologistexplainedthattheexistingUSGSgroundwater modelwasnotagoodrepresentationoftheNaquiferand,overall,hadnotperformedwell (Leake2008). InthemostcurrentgroundwatermodeldevelopedbyPeabodyconsultants(HSIGeoTrans andWEHE1999),adischargeestimatewasnotattemptedbecausedischargeremainspoorly understood.Nonewstudieswereperformedtoestimateeitherrechargeorleakage.

(2)

(4)

(5)


reversalrecordedbytheUSGS(HillandWhetten1986)TheseincludeRoughRock10T258,RoughRock10R 111,PinonPM6,andpossiblyKeamsCanyonPM2andUSGSobservationwellBM3.

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APPENDIXA:DescriptiveStatisticsandOutliersforPeabodyWithdrawals DataforKayentawithdrawalsareavailablefrom19842008;dataforspringdischargeare availablefortheperiod19872008;andPeabodywithdrawaldataarealsoavailableforthisperiod (Chart1,below).However,becausewithdrawalsdeclinedbyapproximately70%after2005,the regressionofPeabodyWithdrawalstodischargefromMoenkopiSchoolSpring,forexample,isskewed bythethreeyearsofreducedwithdrawals(Chart2). Asmightbeexpected,descriptivestatisticsforPeabodywithdrawals(theperiod19872008)express threeoutliersrepresentingwithdrawalsfor2006,2006,and2008(Chart3).Duetothesethreeyears, thedataarenotdistributedevenlyunderthenormalfit;theboxplotexpressesthreeoutliers;andthe threeoutliersskewthedistribution. Itisnotacceptabletoremoveoutlierssimplybecausetheyseemanomalousanddonottrendwith otherdata.However,thatisnotthecasehere;thesethreeyearsarenotanomalousdatapointswithin thedataset.Rather,Peabodymadeamanagementdecisiontochangeitswithdrawalregimeby decreasingwithdrawalsby70%.Inthiscase,theoutliersareremovedbecausetheydonotrepresent conditionsthatarenormaltothedataset. Withthesethreeyearsremovedfromthedataset(Chart4),descriptivestatisticsexpressthesmall numberofdatapointswithinthedatasetasdistributedmoreevenly.
5,000 4,500 4,000 Withdrawals in acre-feet per year 3,500 3,000 2,500 2,000 1,500 1,000 500 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008

CHART1

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CHART2

51

CHART3

52

CHART4

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