Pinal Creek

Registry placement date: Oct. 23, 1998

Score: 97

County: Gila

Location: In and around the city of Globe, town of Miami and the communities of Claypool and Wheatfields, including the BHP Copper and Freeport McMoRan (formerly Phelps Dodge) Miami mining properties, the drainages and underlying aquifers of Miami Wash, Bloody Tanks Wash, Russell Gulch and Pinal Creek; the entire floodplain of Pinal Creek from the Old Dominion Mine to the Salt River, and those portions of the communities underlain by contaminated groundwater

Contaminants of concern: Aluminum, iron, manganese, copper, cobalt, nickel, zinc, cadmium, sulfate, acidity and dissolved solids, plus arsenic, lead, copper, cadmium, manganese, nickel and zinc in localized soil and stream sediment

Action taken: The Pinal Creek Group (PCG) (previously BHP, Freeport McMoRan and Inspiration Copper) has been conducting remedial actions including source control since 1988 and has completed a remedial investigation (RI), risk assessments, a feasibility study (FS) and a recommended remedial action plan. They have also conducted a well replacement program for contaminated private and public supply wells. The PCG has been conducting groundwater extraction and treatment from the alluvial and regional aquifers since 1988.

In 2010, they petitioned the U.S. District Court to limit PCG’s membership to Freeport McMoRan and Inspiration Copper. BHP Copper is no longer a part of the group, though they remain responsible for management of their properties in accordance with the governing Consent Decree. Freeport McMoRan now solely manages the PCG, as well as remedial actions at their properties. 

Status: The PCG remains responsible for site-wide remedial actions. Source control, groundwater remediation and groundwater monitoring continue. To speed up aquifer restoration, groundwater remedy optimization pilot tests have been conducted near the source area in Bloody Tanks Wash.

Community Advisory Board (CAB): Established and meets on a regular basis