The sediment concentration—turbidity relation: Its value in monitoring at Ranger uranium mine, Northern Territory, Australia

1997

Internal Report 249
Riley SJ
Supervising Scientist Division
Department of Environment, Sport and Territories

About the report

Some earlier studies of erosion of the schist-dominated waste rock dump of Ranger Uranium Mine, Northern Territory, Australia, used turbidity as a surrogate for sediment concentration. Subsequent detailed studies of the turbidity-sediment concentration relation for a number of sites on the waste rock dump, reported in this paper, demonstrate that turbidity cannot be used to accurately predict sediment concentration. The results of this experiment suggest that environmental monitoring of erosion at mines in the Kakadu region of Northern Australia should use direct methods of measurement of the sediment concentration in runoff and that turbidity measurements will not provide sufficient accuracy to satisfy audits of environmental compliance to regulatory guidelines.