Geochemistry and Hydrochemistry of the Oconee River Basin
Cocker, Mark D.
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This study documents the background geochemistry and hydrochemistry of the Oconee River Basin (ORB) as part of the Comprehensive Basin Management Plan (SB 637), focusing on the distribution of heavy metals. The primary databases used were those of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Uranium Resource Evaluation Program (NURE), which provide a comprehensive sample coverage of the basin and a late 1970’s baseline with which to evaluate more recent data. A Geographical Information System (GIS) was used to: 1) select geochemical and hydrochemical data which exist for the ORB; 2) provide statistical description of the data; 3) contour the geochemical and hydrochemical data; and 4) select individual geologic units for interpretive purposes. The study shows that most of the geochemistry and hydrochemistry are related to regional and local geology. Some anomalously high heavy metal analyses, particularly for lead, may be related to anthropogenic activities.