Bear River Mill Voluntary Cleanup Agreement Project

Project Profile
Bear River Mill Voluntary Cleanup Agreement Project
Location: Grass Valley, California
Owner: Private Lumber Company
Total Project Value: Est. $50,000,000
Consultant/Engr. Cost: $50,000
Square Footage/Area: 175 acres
Completion Date: 2005

The 175-acre site is located in a rural area of Nevada County, California. Portions of the site have had human activity since the 1800s. Initially, the site was hard rock mined. In the mid 1900s the site was used for the production of lumber and wood products. Environmental concerns for the site have focused on operation and waste disposal practices from mining and lumber activities. A residential and commercial development was proposed for the site.

The client entered into a Voluntary Cleanup Agreement VCA with the California DTSC for the investigation, assessment, and remediation of the site. Stratus personnel were responsible for completing the VCA tasks.




Project Challenges
The environmental investigations identified the following chemicals and media
of concern:

  • Wood treating chemicals, primarily pentachlorophenol;
  • Fuels and fuel constituents, primarily diesel from a fuel spill; and
  • Metals: Arsenic, mercury, lead, and others in native soil, surface and ground
    water, and mining waste rock (MWR).






Stratus Solutions
Stratus personnel performed the following activities:

    Stratus personnel obtained a determination of mine waste group C – no threat to groundwater for the MWR
  • Confirmed cleanup of wood treating chemicals;
  • Completed the closure of the groundwater monitoring program for the diesel fuel spill;
  • Determined metals concentrations in, and the extent of, MWR;
  • Determined background metals concentrations in native soil, and surface and groundwater;
  • Obtained from the California Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (CVRWQCB) a determination of Mine Waste Group C (no threat to groundwater) for the MWR;
  • Completed a human health risk assessment that identified the risk for the proposed land uses; and
  • Completed an engineering evaluation/cost assessment for alternatives to mitigate determined risks.