Central Plains Center for Bioassessment

Assessment of Sunflower Electric Power Corporation’s Great Bend Station selenium discharge on a tributary of Dry Walnut Creek

Dry Arkansas River in August 2011.
Date January 2011 - December 2011
Contact Adam Blackwood
Location Great Bend, KS


Sunflower Electric’s Great Bend Station (GBS) located near Heizer Kansas in Barton County discharges spent cooling water to an unnamed tributary of Dry Walnut Creek, a tributary of the Walnut River that flows into the Arkansas River east of Great Bend Kansas. The Central Plains Center for BioAssessment (CPCB) is evaluating the potential effects of the Great Bend Station discharge on the selenium levels associated with the sediment, water, and fish within the receiving tributary. Thanks to the Kansas Wetlands Education Center for loaning equipment.

Analysis, Results, or Reports

Maps, Images, or Photos

Dry Arkansas River in August 2011.
It still had a pool with lots of fish. Don taking in situ measurements.
Site 3 on the unnamed tributary to Dry Walnut Creek, Aug. 2011, looking downstream.
Collecting sediment at site 3 with a corer.
Water and sediment samples.
Site 6 is dry Aug. 2011, facing Cheyenne Bottoms (see haze of smoke in sky from controlled burn).


Debbie Baker

Donald Huggins

Published Work

Huggins, D., S. Tammareddi, D. Baker. 2012. Assessment of the Great Bend Station (Sunflower Electric Power Corporation) Selenium Discharge on a Tributary of Dry Walnut Creek (Barton Co., KS). Kansas Biological Survey, Lawrence, KS Report No. 172:44 pp.