Protecting Public Health and the Environment.

Preliminary Assessment Program for Mined Lands and Industrial Facilities

In February 2002, DEQ initiated a Preliminary Assessment and Site Inspection Program to evaluate and prioritize assessment of potentially contaminated sites. Idaho has more than 8,500 inactive and abandoned mines, mineral locations, and mineral discoveries. The state also has multiple abandoned or repurposed industrial facilities such as old landfills, repair and maintenance shops, dry cleaners and laundromats, rural airfields, railroad depots, and various manufacturers. Due to accessibility and funding considerations, priority is given to sites where potential contamination poses the most substantial threat to human health or the environment.

The Preliminary Assessment Program is implemented through a cooperative agreement between DEQ and EPA.

Remediation Options

The vast majority of sites assessed by DEQ do not warrant remedial action based on current uses. In the cases where DEQ finds that a substantial risk exists, one of several actions may occur.

  • The current owner or responsible party may voluntarily act to abate or manage risks at the property, although no formal agreement to do so is entered into with the government.
  • If there is a responsible party who is willing to work with DEQ to manage or abate associated risks, the property owner may enter DEQ’s Voluntary Cleanup Program and implement corrective action.
  • If a public entity is willing to take ownership of the site and either abate or manage risks at the site, the property may be a candidate for DEQ's Brownfields Program.
  • None of the property owners who have participated in the program are cleaning up sites due to regulatory action by DEQ; however, DEQ does have the regulatory obligation to address environmental threats and may instigate an administrative action by issuing the responsible party (owner/operator) a Notice of Violation (NOV) consistent with the Hazardous Waste Management Act (HWMA) or Environmental Protection and Health Act (EPHA). After issuing an NOV, DEQ will seek to alleviate the existing threat and may pursue penalties for violations of state law and cost recovery.
  • In the event that no responsible party exists and there is an imminent and substantial threat to human health and/or the environment, DEQ's director may declare a state of emergency. This declaration would allow DEQ to use emergency response funding to hire remediation specialists to clean up the site. Emergency response funds are drawn from penalties imposed on responsible parties who have violated the HWMA.
  • If state funding is unavailable, or the site falls under federal jurisdiction, the site may be placed on EPA National Priority List. EPA then leads the site cleanup effort.

Contact Us

If you would like to find out whether a site in your area poses a possible threat, or provide DEQ with information about a site that you suspect is contaminated, contact your nearest DEQ regional office or the staff contact listed on this web page.

Completed Preliminary Assessments by County

DEQ prepares preliminary assessment and site inspection reports of mine and industrial sites. DEQ's work at the sites listed below is in various stages of progress ranging from looking to acquire legal access to completiing preliminary assessment or site inspection report. Some of the sites listed below may also have links to engineering plans or construction completion reports for remedial action at the site.  Final preliminary assessment or site inspection reports are usually completed by DEQ within 5 to 6 months after a site visit has been conducted.

Note: Listed sites are private properties. Do not enter without the owner's permission. If authorized, avoid contact with hazardous materials and respect the property's historical significance.

Records 1 to 10 of 304
Site NameCountyAssessment TypeAssessment DateDocument Links
Ajax Mine
(aka Phoenix Group, Lost Lake, War Eagle Fraction, Water Eagle, Phoenix, Ajax, Ajax Fraction, Phoenix Fraction, Blue Rock)
IdahoMiningFebruary 2011Preliminary Assessment and Site Inspection Report
Ajax Mine Dixie Mining District
(aka Mountain Boy, Midas, Ajax, Monitor)
IdahoMiningMarch 2012Abbreviated Preliminary Assessment Report
Alamance Mine
(aka Blue Dragon, Alliance, Allamance)
IdahoMiningJanuary 2012Abbreviated Preliminary Assessment
Alamo Prospect
BonnerMiningDecember 2015Preliminary Assessment and Site Inspection
Alaska Mine
(aka Idaho Copper Mining Co., Alaska Tungsten Mine, Maud S., Mountain King, Alaska, Cleavland Fraction, Cleavland, Copper Crescent Lode, Norma Lode, Mountain Queen Lode)
AdamsMiningJune 2011Abbreviated Preliminary Assessment
Alder Creek Mining District
(aka Cossack Tunnel, Empire Mill, Empire Mine, Alberta Tunnel, Headhouse, Bullion Tunnels, Blue Bird Mine, Pacific Mill Site, and Atlantic Mill Site; aka Blue Jay No. 1, Buena Vista, Copper Bullion, Hannibal, Leslie W., Occidental, Pasha, Rio Vista, Wellington, Headhouse, Blue Bird, Blue Jay, Blue Jay No. 2, Continental, Eastern, Khedive, Midwinter, Remonitization, Easlie Group, and Sultan patented mining claims)
CusterMiningDecember 2005Preliminary Assessment and Site Investigation
Alhambra Mine
(aka San Francisco Group, Alhambra Prospect, Alhambra, St. Paul Mill Site, St. Paul Fraction, San Francisco Prospect, San Francisco, Gem City)
IdahoMiningFebruary 2011Preliminary Assessment and Site Inspection Report
Allen Mine
(aka Allen Group, Bloomfield Properties, Tom Rogers Lode, and Alpine Lode patented mining claims)
BlaineMiningNovember 2007Preliminary Assessment Report
Almaden Mine
(aka Idaho Almaden, Nut Meg, Osa, Anna, Nutmeg)
WashingtonMiningDecember 2002Preliminary Assessment Report
Altoona Mine
IdahoMiningFebruary 2011Preliminary Assessment and Site Inspection Report

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Staff Contacts

Assessment and Compliance Bureau Chief
Dean Ehlert
DEQ State Office
Waste Management & Remediation Division
1410 N. Hilton
Boise, ID 83706
(208) 373-0416

DEQ Guidance

Gilmore Townsite Health and Safety Fact Sheet

Related Mining Reports

Related Pages

Brownfields in Idaho

Voluntary Cleanup Program