The Swank 13 Mine is a large long-abandoned underground mine near the village of Frugality. A large flow of acid iron-bearing water flows from the mine high on a hillside, averaging 175 gal/min with pH 3.4, 0.8 mg/L iron, 12 mg/L aluminum, and 150 mg/L acidity. The discharge is on land of the PA Game Commission.
The discharge was identified and sampled during the assessment study of Clearfield Creek, by volunteers of the Watershed Association in 2003. EP Bender Coal Co. constructed a sloping channel down the hillside in 2005 in exchange for Game Commission access elsewhere. In 2011, the Game Commission improved the road in to the site, and CCWA obtained grants from the ARIPPA (an association of power plants burning coal waste as fuel), the Foundation for PA Watersheds, and Dominion Gas to line the channel with limestone. The cost of construction was $11,191plus a match of $14,000 from the Game Commission and CCWA. This type of treatment system is called a limestone channel.
By flowing through the limestone, most of the acidity and metals are removed from the water. The construction area was revegetated in plants recommended by the Game Commission to feed deer.
The system continues to be monitored.