A containment structure, called a tailings pond in the case of a mine[1], is a body of water with an impermeable lining at an oil or gas well, or at a mine which produces volumes of contaminated water. Failure of containment structures has resulted in a number of environmental disasters. Dry material, such as fly ash or mine tailings, may also be stored in containment structures, which can, for example, during a flood, fail and contaminate the larger environment.[1]


  1. "Tennessee Ash Flood Larger Than Initial Estimate" article by Shaila Dewan in The New York Times December 26, 2008

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