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Abstract: Cimarron Mill, Carrizozo, New Mexico: A Typical Superfund Site?

Lynn A. Brandvold

The Cimarron Mill in Carrizozo, New Mexico, was operated by Southwest Minerals Company under the name of Cimarron Mining Company (CMC) as a cyanide mill for gold recovery from

1979 to 1982. In 1980, the New Mexico Environmental Improvement Division (NMEID) received a report of improper use and dumping of cyanide at the site. A certified notice of violations was sent to CMC in 1982 by NMEID for discharging into a non-permitted discharge pit. CMC filed for bankruptcy in 1983, and no action was taken on violations. A site inspection follow-up report was done by NMEID in 1984, and in 1988 the mill site was listed as a Superfund site by the United States Environmental Agency (USEPA). A feasibility study to determine the method of remediation was completed by EPA contractors in June 1990, and a remediation method was chosen in September 1990. Clean up was expected to begin in spring of 1991 and to be completed in 1992. However, clean up did not begin until spring of 1992 and is not yet complete and probably never will be.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90980©1994 AAPG Southwest Section Meeting, Ruidoso, New Mexico, April 24-26, 1994