Volume I
A Scoping Study
Prepared for the Western Governors' Association Mine Waste Task Force
by the
Western Interstate Energy Board
August 1991

This report was prepared by:
Western Interstate Energy Board
Lori Friel
Douglas Larson
Alison Wilson
Richard Juntunen, Consultant
In Cooperation with
Greg Conrad, Interstate Mining Compact Commission
This repo
under a c
herein an
pared with the support of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
^agreement with the Western Governors' Association, Agreement No. CX-
rver, any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed
tfte authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of either EPA or
Printed on Recycled Paper

This report was prepared with the support of the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency Office of Solid Waste under a
cooperative agreement with the Western Governors' Association,
cooperative agreement No. CX-816270-01-0. However, any findings,
conclusions, or recommendations expressed herein are those of the
authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of either EPA or
the Western Governors1 Association.
Appendices and excerpted pages from other documents are included
in this report, and as a result, page numbers may not be

Executive Summary		v
Inactive/Abandoned Mine Data	 1
Introduction		 . . 1
Inactive and Abandoned Mines: The Problem
Character of the Problem	 2
Remediation Technologies			10
Remediation Costs		12
Inventory Needs 		16
Inventory Instructions 		18
WGA Participating States		19
IMCC Participating States		20
Approaches Used By States 		21
State Summary Tables 		23
Policy Options	58
Introduction		60
Organization of Discussion		60
Compulsory Options
CERCLA Abatement Actions		66
CERCLA Natural Resource Damage Claims		69
State Superfund Laws 		74
State General Mining Laws 		74
State Tort Law 		75
Negligence	 		76
Trespass 		77
Nuisance		78
Strict Liability 		79
Federal Common Law		80
NPDES Permits 		81
Underground Injection Control 		83
RCRA Corrective Action		84
RCRA Imminent Hazard and Citizen Suit Provisions		87
Clean Air Act 		89
Reclamation Requirements on Federal Land		90
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act 		91

Incentives/Cooperative Programs
Remining Incentives 	 93
CERCLA Liability Exemptions	 94
Clean Water Act Variances	 95
Bonding Incentives	 96
Tax Incentives for Reprocessing 	 98
Preferential Purchasing of Remined Minerals 	 98
Permitting Priority/Permitting Assistance 	 99
Reclamation to Satisfy Civil Penalties	 100
Clean Water Act Demonstration Projects 	 101
State Substitution Clauses		 104
Government-Funded Options
SMCRA	 110
State Abandoned Mine Land Laws	 113
State Superfund Laws 	 115
Clean Water Act Demonstration Projects 	 115
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act 	 116
New Government-Funded LAM Program	 117
Existing Funds to Finance a Federal LAM Program .... 118
New Taxes/Fees to Finance a Federal LAM Program . . 119
Exemption of Remining from IAM Tax 	 128
State Reports
WGA Mine Waste Task Force States
New Mexico
South Carolina
South Dakota

State Reports
1MCC Interstate Coalition on Mine Waste States
New York
North Carolina

Abandoned Mine Lands (SMCRA)
Applicable or Relevant and Appropriate Requirements (Superfund)
Bureau of Land Management
Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (also known

as Superfund)
Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Information

Clean Water Act
Environmental Protection Agency
Federal Land Policy and Management Act
Inactive and Abandoned Mines
Interstate Mining Compact Commission
Minerals Industry Location System
Mineral Resource Data System
No Funher Response Action Planned (Superfund)
National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (Clean Water Act)
National Priorities List (Superfund)
National Park Service
Office of Surface Mining
Office of Technology Assessment
Potentially Responsible Party (Superfund)
Resource Conservation and Recovery Act
Soil Conservation Service
Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act
Small Operator Assistance Program (SMCRA)
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act
U.S. Forest Service
U.S. Geological Survey
Western Governors' Association
Western Interstate Energy Board

The purpose of this three-volume report is to:
~	Report on the scope of the environmental, public health and safety problems
presented by inactive and abandoned noncoal mines (IAMs); and
~	Conduct a preliminary identification of policy options for addressing such
[AM problems.
This volume of the report is accordingly divided into two sections. The first
section outlines the environmental, health and safery problems at IAMs, remediation
technologies, remediation costs, the methodology states used in preparing state
reports, and state summary tables. The second section describes the broad range of
policy options for remediation of problems associated with LAMs. The options are
divided into compulsory, incentive-driven and government-funded options. To help
illustrate their advantages and disadvantages, the policy options are typically
discussed in terms of their effectiveness, costs, fairness, legal issues, history, time
factors, interaction with other laws and opportunities for improvements. Volume II
contains state reports submitted to the Western Governors' Association. Volume III ,
contains state reports submitted to the Interstate Mining Compact Commission.
This report was prepared by the Western Interstate Energy Board (WIEB)
pursuant to an agreement with the Western Governors' Association (WGA) and by
the Interstate Mining Compact Commission (IMCC) pursuant to a cooperative grant
agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The project was guided
by the Inactive/Abandoned Mines Advisory Committee of the WGA Mine Waste Task
The WGA Mine Waste Task Force2 has been involved in a cooperative effort
with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to develop a program under the
Resource Recovery and Conservation Act to regulate mine waste. The Task Force
recommend^ Hmitiiig such a regulatory program to active mines. The Task Force
recognized; however, that the problems associated with IAMs are significant and
should be examined.
1	The Inactive/Abandoned Mines Advisory Committee was chaired by Fred Bania. Colorado, and included Jim Bums,
Missouri, Doug Driesner, Nevada, Mary Ann Wright, Utah, Dave Bucknam, Colorado, and Greg Conrad Interstate Mining
Compact Commission.
2	Member states of the WGA Mine Waste Task Force are listed on page 19. infra.

Therefore, the Task Force directed the preparation of a scoping reporr on the
size and character of environmental, public health and safety problems associated
with IAMs and an identification of potential options to address [AM problems. The
Mine Waste Task Force directed that a project be undertaken to assemble existing
data from the states. From the onset, it was recognized that this effort amounted to
a scoping of the problem.
As part of a
similar cooperative effort
on mine waste
regulation, the IMCC
identified inactive and
abandoned mines as an
issue requiring special
emphasis and study.
Through the Interstate
Coalition on Mine
Waste3, IMCC arranged
to participate in the LAM
data collection effort
following the format and
procedures designed by
WGA/WIEB. The results
of the IMCCs IAM
inventory effort are
incorporaied in this
report so as to provide a
presentation of data
concerning a significant
issue of national scope.
Eighteen states
participating in the WGA
Mine Waste Task Force
presented IAM data. Additionally, 16 states working wrh the Interstate Mining
Compact Commission provided information for this scoping effort. As the graph
indicates, the data collection effort involved a majority of the major historic mining
states, as reported by the Bureau of Mines.
3 Member states of the Interstate Coalition on Mine Waste are listed on page 20, infra.
(In Thousands)
WO A porting fttaloa
IMCC Mft Statoa -
Alaooma -¦
Indian*	-•
Lowiaiana	-#
U.rta	45
9fin Carolina
The data submitted by states show significant [AM problems. As expected,
some of the historic mining states have the largest [AM problems. For example, the
State of Arizona estimates there are 80,000 LAM sites covering 136,653 acres, and
200 miles of polluted waters with an estimated remediation cost of S654 million.
The State of Montana identified over 20,000 IAM sites covering 153,800 acres, 1,118
rrules of streams damaged by IAMs and an estimated remediation cost of S912
million. The State of Missouri identified 7,655 sites, covering 48,175 acres, and 109
miles of streams affected by [AMs with an estimated remediation cost of SI.4 billion.
Utah estimated 25,020 acres affected by IAMs and at least 83 miles of polluted
streams with an estimated remediation cost of $174 million. Colorado estimated
there are 20,299 abandoned mine openings in the state and 1,298 miles of polluted
streams that will cost S245 million to remediate. California reports there are at least
2,484 LAM sites, with 1,685 mine openings and 578 miles of polluted streams. Idaho
estimated 27,543 acres impacted at a remediation cost of $316 million. Oklahoma
estimates a total of 26,453 acres affected by IAMs at a total remediation cost of $86
million. New Mexico estimated remediation costs of $332 million for 25,320 acres of
impacted lands and 69 miles of impacted streams.
Other mining states also have significant IAM impacts. Florida estimates there
are 62,080 acres affected by IAMs and that it will cost $192 million to remediate.
Oregon estimates it will cost $57 million to $77 million to remediate the estimated
9,200 acres of IAMs. Texas reports that it will cost over $1 billion to reclaim some ..
20,604 sites affecting 163,904 acres. Illinois estimates that over 35,000 acres have
been disturbed by LAMs with an associated remediation cost of $113 million.
The findings presented are not comparable among states because of variability
in the definitions of LAMs used by states, and variability in the type and quality of
data available to states. Neither the number of sites, nor the cost of remediation,
reported by individual states can be totalled to present a consistent national total.
Nevertheless, the numbers presented by the states are the best indication currently
available of the size and character of the 1AM problem.
The report found that no single existing option has been used extensively to
address a large portion of IAMs. Only a few of the existing options (e.g., RCRA
corrective action and imminent hazard, Clean Water Act demonstrations, storm water
runoff rules) have the potential to reach a large number of IAMs. New options, such
as a new IAM fund, also have the potential of reaching a large number of sites.
There are also a number of existing and potential options which can be effective in
addressing a smaller universe of [AM problems. To be effective, however, fine tuning
of existing laws and practices may be needed.

The report does not evaluate topics in sufficient depth ro draw specific
conclusions on appropriate policy options for addressing LAMs or provide a
consistent, detailed picture of the size and character of the LAM problem. The
findings of the scoping effort, however, do indicate that:
*	Future inventory work needs to have well thought-out goals and
instructions, maintain consistent standards, and ensure coordination among
agencies conducting such inventories;
*	Federal agencies, particularly EPA, and states need to evaluate how
application of individual, existing laws and refutations can be used to
remediate IAMs or may impede remediation, and how existing policy
options can be made more effective; and,
*	Federal and state agencies need to evaluate how the various policy options
can be used in concert ro remediate LAM problems and what additional
policy tools are necessary.


Introduction 	 1
Inactive and Abandoned Mines: The Problem
Character of the Problem	 2
Remediation Technologies	 10
Remediation Costs 	 12
Inventory Needs 	 16
Inventory Instructions	 18
WGA Participating States 	 19
IMCC Participating States	 20
Approaches Used By States 	 21
State Summary Tables	 23
In its work with the Environmental Protection Agency to develop a regulatory
program for active noncoal mines, the WGA Mine Waste Task Force identified serious
environmental, public health and safety problems associated with inactive and abandoned
noncoal mines. The Interstate Coalition on Mine Waste found similar IAM problems in the
course of its mine waste regulatory analyses. Much of the evidence of IAM problems was
anecdotal and incomplete. Unlike coal, there is no national inventory of noncoal IAM
The Task Force directed that a project be undertaken to assemble existing data from
the states on the size and character of LAM problems. From the onset, it was recognized that
this effort amounted to a scoping of the problem. Daca available to states was highly
variable. A few, largely coal-producing, states had on-the-ground inventories of IAMs.
Typically, however, those inventories focused on health and safety problems. A number of
states had '¦¦¦¦'*¦ 1 information on stream damage from LAMs. Many states had little state-
generated dH» and relied on mining data from the U.S. Geological Survey, the Bureau of
Mines and odfter secondary sources.
The Western Interstate Energy Board was assigned the task of assisting states in the
preparation of IAM data for the WGA Mine Waste Task Force states. The Interstate Mining
Compact Commission agreed to develop similar data from 16, primarily eastern, states.
This scoping study found that there are many unknowns associated with LAMs.

~ There is wide variability among the states in the quality and quantity of
information on IAMs, ranging from states with on-the-ground inventories to states with little
data beyond that found in national mining information data bases.
~	Even with the limited data, it is
apparent that there are substantial
environmental, health and safety problems
associated with IAMs. The costs of
remediation are significant.
~	Future inventory work needs to have
well thought-out goals and instructions,
maintain consistent standards, and ensure
coordination among agencies conducting such
Character of the Problem:
The Zonia Mine in Yavapai County,
Arizona is an area approximately 1,350
acres in size. A novel in-situ and heap
leach copper mining operation conducted
between 1966 and 1975 discharges acid
mine drainage into the Hassayampa River
and affects the water supplies of two
communities. Contaminants are copper,
lead, zinc, silver, arsenic and cadmium.
The area has potential for remining as it
contains 87.4 million pounds of
recoverable copper.
Environmental, health and safety
problems associated with inactive/abandoned
mine fearures are frequently observed in most
mining districts around the country.
Typically, mining prior to 1970 was conducted
with limited environmental awareness or
regulation. Abandonment procedures
included minimal provision for safety
concerns. Few people understood the
The now abandoned Argo Tunnel portal
located 30 miles west of Denver, Colorado
on Clear Creek, discharges acid mine
drainage at the rate of 206 gallons per
minute. The mine area void space drained
by the Argo portal is 1,490,000 cubic
yards. Since 1943, 4 miners have been
killed in the Argo and two blowout events
(sudden water discharges) have occurred.
The blowout of 1980 closed the intakes of
six downstream water users, including the
city of Golden. A wont case blowout has
been calculated at 3.1 million cubic feet
flowing at 990 cfs for one hour. This
event would provide a zinc concentration
at Golden of 10,000 micrograms per liter,
3.5 hours after the event.

importance of remediation4 or appreciated 'ire potemiaj long-term environmental damage or
health hazards that resulted from past mining operations.
In many cases, large areas are severely
impacted by historic mineral beneficiation
processes associated with the mining
operations. Mining impacts on ground water
and air bome contamination by toxic metals
were frequently unknown at the time of
mining. Tailings ponds, waste rock and ore
dumps were located at the lowest convenient
point, which normally was in or adjacent to
the streambed. Milling reagents, used
chemical solutions and depleted waste rock
were simply dumped into the nearest stream
or holding pond.
The state reports (Volumes II and 111)
show significant LAM environmental problems
in most states surveyed. As expected, some of
the historic mining states have the largest 1AM
problems. For example, the State of Arizona
estimates there are 80,000 LAM sites covering
136,653 acres, and 200 miles of polluted
waters. The State of Montana identified over
20,000 1AM sites covering 153.800 acres, and
1,118 miles of streams damaged by lAMs.
The State of Missouri identified 7,655 sites,
covering 48,175 acres, and 109 miles of
streams affected by LAMs. Utah estimated
25,020 acres affected by LAMs and at least 83
miles of polluted streams. Colorado estimated
there are 20,299 abandoned mine openings in
the state and 1,298 miles of polluted streams.
California reports there are at least 2,484 LAM
sites, with 1,685 mine openings and 578 miles
of polluted	Idaho estimated 27,543 acres of impacted land. Oklahoma estimated a
total of 26,453 acres affected by LAMs. New Mexico estimated 25,320 acres of impacted
lands and 69 miles of impacted streams. All reporting states, except Iowa, found significant
environmental impacts on land and water from LAMs.
4 "Remediation" is uied in the broadest sense to indude all actions which produce an improvement in site conditions
from a health, safety or environmental perspective. It does noc necessarily mean completely addressing all problems at
an LAM site.
!n some cases, people have not understood
che porennal health hazard from wind
blown particulates, especially those which
may be contaminated with heavy metals.
Baseball fields in Sucre, Montana had to
be excavated and new topsoil added after
cesnng showed dangerous levels of heavy
metals. In the Butte area. 340,000 cubic
yards of contaminated soil have been
Researcher? at che Colorado Mill tailings
pond in Butte, Montana became ill after
rwo days field work on-site. Headaches
and nausea were reported. However, the
symptoms disappeared upon leaving the
sice. It is assumed, but not verified, that
toxic vapors or particulates caused these
symptoms. The tailings are located in che
center of town and the city water
treatment plant is built upon them. The
tailings are barren, fine grained material
existing in a dune type erosional pattern
and contain high concentrations of
copper, zinc, cadmium, arsenic and lead.

Safety hazards associated with
abandoned mines account for deaths and/or
injuries each year. However, there is no
known national depository for such
information and accurate figures do not exist.
Most states have inconsistent information
concerning safety accidents related to
abandoned mines.
Increased outdoor recreation,' urban
sprawl and general population growth into
rural areas escalates potential exposure of the
general public to hazardous abandoned mine
features. With a litigious society, liability
concerns are becoming important
considerations to public and private
landowners. The National Park Service
inventory of mines has come about because of
past lawsuits and concern over future liability.
The major environmental and safety
problems associated with LAMs by mining
processes can be summarized as follows.
Soil testing at a mine and smelter site
located within 100 yards of occupied
housing yielded the highest lead level ever
measured in naturally occurring soil in
Montana - 14%. Ironically, due to the low
population in the area, this site docs not
merit listing as a qualified Sup«rfund site
by EPA. Cattle and horses have died after
grazing onsite. The site is visited by
tourists and local children play in the
A) Ore extraction or mining by surface,
underground or placer techniques have these
common problems:
1)	Air and water pollution from
erosion of dumps.
2)	Acid mine drainage from mine
dumps and workings.
3)	Open adits or shafts and precipitous highwalls.
4)	Abandoned explosives and hazardous structures.
5)	Contamination from chemicals as in amalgamation.
A few states have kept records on fatalities
and injuries. Colorado reports there have
been 16 fataliries and 21 injuries from
1955 to 1989. Utah has reported three
deaths and numerous injuries from entry
to abandoned mine adits or shafts.
Nevada had a February 1991 death from
entry into an abandoned mine adit and
fall down a 80 foot shaft. Arizona
averages about one death per year at 1AM
B) Milling operations have produced problems such as:
1)	Leaching from mill railings into water resources.
2)	Historic waste process dumping into streams.
3)	Air pollution from unvegetated mill tailings.
4)	Abandoned chemical storage and hazardous structures.
5)	Acid drainage formed within abandoned tailings ponds.

C) Smelting operations have provided problems such as:
1)	Contamination of soil and water resources through airborne emissions.
2)	Leaching or erosion of slag dumps.
3)	Hazardous and contaminated smelter structures.
The National Park Service (N?S) has recorded several fatalities at IAM sites. For example,
in 1970, a man fell 165 feet in an open shaft at Lake Mead National Recreation Area. In
1984, a man was killed after entering an open mine adit in Death Valley National
Monument. The Park Service has embarked on an IAM inventory and mitigation program
for all property it controls. The NPS estimates there are 1,500 !AM sites and 9,000 mine
openings or hazards at these sites.

The following photographs illustrate several typical IAM problems.
Argo Tunnel Blowout
Clear Creek, Colorado
Forced closure of City
of Golden water supply
for several days.

^	• "r-.
Tailings Erosion
Minnesota Mines area
near Empire,
Clear Creek Countv.
• .'. . i v	^ < ?>*/¦ ?.	1 ..

Acid Leaching
Denuded forest below
acid forming mine
waste pile,
Colonel Sellers Mine
Summit Countv.

Hazardous Opening
Caused By Shaft or
Rise Failure
Butte, Montana
Sudden collapse into
abandoned mine voids
are a common occwunce
in Butte.

Mine Drainage Below
Mike Horse Mine
pH 2 to 3 acid mine
drainage flows into ihe
Blackfoot River, a
prime trout fishery.

Mine Drainage at
Sunset Mine

Promeniory, Utah
In 1985, child riding
3-wheeler with family
died from 475 feet fall.
Now closed
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fe:; V'/
wife'" "¦ - \v.'.1 J: ;Jv-. £. *£*&¦
•"• • ••	•Ov-V'^v;
V ;. \v ^ VY'^-
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• %

Remediation Technologies:
A variety of technologies are needed to
address the range of problems presented by
IAMs. Remediation technologies focus on:
~	Isolating spoil (waste material) and
soil from contact with water;
~	Removing contaminants from water;
~	Isolating spoil and soil from contact
with air;
» Removing hazardous structures and
safety hazards;
• Subsidence; and
~	Revegetating disturbed lands.
The most severe and persistent
environmental problem is drainage from
mines and mill tailing?, into boch surface and
ground water. Water contaminated by acid
and toxic metals is much more prevalent in
noncoal mines than coal mines. Acid mine
drainage emanating from metal mines
generally results in a heavy loading of dissolved metals which will precipitate out when the
pH increases, usually when the stream is diluted by water in other streams. Historically,
mine and mill dumps have been located near screams providing contact with water.	
Ir. the early 1980s, water from wells in
Milltown, Montana were discovered to be
contaminated with arsenic, lead, zinc and
cadmium. The source of this pollution
was traced to ore processing sediments in
the Milltown dam. These sediments,
emanating from historic Butte and
Anaconda mining operations, had traveled
over one hundred stream miles and
saturated the sediments.
A plume of contaminant laden pound-
water is now traveling down gradient
toward Missoula. The amount of
contaminated sediment is estimated at 6
million cubic yards. The dam pool is
nearly filled with this sediment and no
solution is apparent.
Isolating spoil and soil from contact
with water requires relocating spoils out of
the surface or groundwater contact zone,
chemical neutralization, and covering with
topsoiL This is a standard practice although it
does not have universal application and
moving millions of cubic yards of material is
costly, In addition, there are liability and
administrative problems with relocating the
At the Block P and McLaren mills in
Montana, historic attempts to control acid
discharge from noncoal spoils piles by
topsoiling and revegetating the pile in place
have failed because surface and poundwater
infiltration was not controlled. Reprocessing,
reverse osmosis filtering, sealing with artificial
The Butte/Anaconda area of Montana
coven over one hundred miles of
mountain valley which are impacted from
the long-term effects of air and water
pollution associated with mining and
smelting operations. Metals
contamination in ground water and soil
are extensive. Two hundred twenty-r.me
million cuHc yards of contaminated
material are present. This site and
adjacent downstream areas have been
noted as one of the largest "Superfund
sites* in the country. Some of the
problems do not have economically
feasible solutions.

barriers, solidification and reestablishing groundwater regimes by pumping are recent,
though relatively unproven, technologies.
Acid mine drainage from underground mines and open pits is extremely difficult to
remediate. There are no reliable, long-term remediation solutions. Technologies such as
mine flooding with waterproof doors, chemical treatment, air seals, infiltration seals,
infiltration control by high-water-demand crops, and backfilling with lime rock and
continuous treatment have been tried with less than satisfactory results. No technology has
universal application and all are expensive,
Removing contaminants from the water poses a difficult and expensive remediation
problem. In most cases contaminant removal by pumping or physical means is the only
alternative. This is technologically and economically infeasible in cases involving extensive
contamination. However, construction of wetlands has shown gTeat promise in some
locations, and agencies, such as the Tennessee Valley Authority, have used the technique
successfully on coal mine reclamation for years. Colorado and Montana have both
experimented with wetlands projects at noncoal mines with some success, but further
development work is needed.
Air pollution impacts associated with abandoned mine waste have been largely
ignored until recently. In some mining areas it is not uncommon to see new houses located
on unvegetated mine or mill waste. Isolating spoil and soil contact with air can be
accomplished through covering with top soil, revegetation, and, occasionally, removal.
Removing hazardous structures and safety hazards usually requires a straightforward
engineering solution. Techniques for adit and shaft closure involve signing, fencing,
backfilling, or covers or doors. The problem with these solutions is long-term maintenance
of constructed barriers such as fences, doors and coven. Vandalism of these barriers at
remote sites is high and without long-term maintenance the hazard liability can reappear.
Hazardous structures removal is generally straightforward, except for compliance with
historic protection regulations.
Subsidence problems are usually associated with underground mine voids. Noncoal
mines are generally found in structurally sound rock strata (as compared with coal mines)
and the tendency for subsidence problems does not seem to be as widespread as with coal
sites. However, when subsidence does occur, it may be very expensive to remediate.
Techniques such as backfilling with cement or overburden, blasting down the overburden,
removing affected buildings or reinforcing the foundations, and remining the area have been
used in coal mines with success.
Many proven technologies for revegerating LAMs have been developed and used under
the Abandoned Mine Lands program pursuant to Title IV of the Surface Mining Control and
Reclamation Act (SMCRA), as well as active mine reclamation programs. In some cases,
smaller disturbances at operations without co-located smelter or milling facilities will
revegetate if physical, chemical and slope characteristics of the waste material will allow

organic material buildup. Extremely coarse dredge tailings, left in a level condition, have
shown an inch or more of soil formation and subsequent revegetation in a 50-year time
period in a semiarid environment.
In most cases, however, no past effort was made
to level waste piles. Wind and water erosion inhibits
revegetation even when waste material characteristics aie
not toxic or have physical limitations, i.e.. coarse rock
will not support shallow rooted vegetation. Efforts need
to be made to revegetate to prevent sediment loading in
streams and particulates in the air.
Additional research is needed to improve
remediation technologies for lAMs. In 1987, the National
Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences
published a review Setting Priorities for Abandoned Mine
Land Research. Results indicated research needs as
follows: 1) Water Quality; 2) Mine Waste; 3)
Subsidence; 4) Revegetation; 5) Mine Openings and
Toxic Soils. Particularly in the case of acid mine
drainage, there is a need to develop new control
technologies. The adjacent box shows the allocation of
abandoned mine reclamation R&D grants administered by
the Bureau of Mines.
Remediation Costs:
State cost estimates for remediation of LAM sites are listed below. States were
requested to provide costs based on 'best engineering practice" and not "Superfund"
standards. These figures are based on widely different assumptions among states concerning
definition of an IAM, minerals addressed, size, location and scope of sites and remediation
costs. Therefore, the findings presented are not comparable between states. Neither the
number of sires, nor the cost of remediation, reported by individual states can be totalled to
present a consistent national total.
These values are preliminary and an incomplete approximation of costs associated
with 1AM sites. Nevertheless, the numbers presented by the states are the best indication
currently available of the size and character of the IAM problem.
Reclamation costs associated with open adits and shafts are generally much less than
those associated with environmental problems. Compare Montana's actual remediation cost
of $700 to $2,500 per closure of adits and vertical shafts to the remediation costs of
$1,000,000 per mile for high impact polluted waters and $30,000 per acre for mine dumps.
Open adits and shafts are a hazard to public safety and have historically received higher
priority over environmental concerns in many states.
In 1989 the U.S. Bureau of
Mines published figures for
abandoned mine reclamation,
research and development
grants they administer. A
total of $10,093,428 had been
spent through FY 90. The
funded research breaks down
in the following manner:
Mine Drainage
Mine Fires
Data Bases
Mine Waste
Shaft/Adit Closure

The following summarizes costs for remediating IAMs in state. See pages 23-57 for a
data table for each state and Volumes II and III for the detailed state reports.
WGA Mine Waste Task Force States
Alaska: Total remediation costs range from $5 million to S10 million. Alaska bases
its figures on estimates from data on proposed remediation projects and from completed
Abandoned Mine Land coal projects.
Arizona: Total remediation costs = $654,200,000. Arizona bases its figures on
documented costs provided by the states of Colorado, New Mexico and Montana.
California: Total remediation costs were not reported by California in its Inactive and
Abandoned Mine Lands Report.
Colorado: Total remediation costs = $244,528,375. Colorado bases its figures on
historical and present costs of 1AM site reclamation by the Colorado Inactive Mine
Reclamation Program. Mine sites within the boundaries of Superfund sites are included if it
was assumed the sites would not be remediated under the Superfund program.
Florida: Total remediation costs = $192,000,000. Florida bases its figures upon
experienced costs of the Florida Bureau of Mine Reclamation. This estimate does not include
phosphogypsum waste piles.
Idaho: Total remediation costs = $315,566,900. Idaho has estimated that a mine
lands inventory conducted by field survey would cost an additional $1,405,000. Data sources
for projected remediation costs on IAM lands are based on cost projections presented in
Montana's Inactive and Abandoned Mine Lands Report.
Minnesota: Total remediation costs were not reported by Minnesota in their Inactive
and Abandoned Mine Lands Report.
Missouri: Total remediation costs = $1,352,716,500. Missouri has based its cost
figures on the U.S. Department of Interior, Office of Surface Mining's 1989-1990 revision of
Guidelines for Estimating Abandoned Coal Mine Lands Reclamation Costs.
Montana: Total remediation costs = $912,280,000. Montana has based its cost
figures on historical experience with Abandoned Coal Mine Reclamation and noncoal
reclamation funded through the Montana AML Program and Resource Development Grant
Program. Montana's cost includes proposed Superfund Sites.
Nevada: Total remediation costs = $2,529,000. Nevada has based its cost figures on
past experience of average cost per hazardous mine opening. Nevada's cost estimate includes
hazardous mine openings only, not environmental impacts.

New Mexico: Total remediation costs = $331,922,050. New Mexico has based its
cost figures on New Mexico's Abandoned Mine Land projects, information from the BLM,
construction industry gToups and state and federal agencies.
Oregon: Total remediation costs = S57,000,000 to $77,000,000. Oregon has based
its figures on actual western state remediation costs, including remediation by the State of
South Carolina: Total remediation cost = $10,796,000. South Carolina has based its
figures on minimum standards for reclamation, present statutes, and regulations.
South Dakota: Total remediation costs were not reported by South Dakota in their
Inactive and Abandoned Mine Lands report.
Utah: Total remediation cost = $174,790,000. Utah has based its figures on past
experience with actual costs for coal reclamation and present bond estimates for noncoal
active mines.
Washington: Washington did not complete an Inactive and Abandoned Mine Lands
Wisconsin: Total remediation cost = $3,000,000. Wisconsin has based its figures on '
a cost estimate done in the 1970's for filling or partially filling hazardous mine openings.
Wyoming: Total remediation cost = $45,000,000. Wyoming has based its figures on
historical and present experience with actual costs for reclamation of coal and noncoal mine
sites under the Abandoned Mine Land Program.
Interstate Coalition on Mine Waste States
Alabama: Total remediation costs = $54,229,000. Alabama bases its figures on an
average cost of $3,500 per disturbed acre using reclamation costs associated with coal
projects completed under the Abandoned Mine Land program.
Arkansas: Total remediation costs = $145,440,585. These cost estimates are based
on current, actual reclamation costs in the state, estimates provided by the state of Montana
for similar remediation efforts, and best professional judgement.
Illinois: Total remediation costs = $113,000,000. Illinois bases its estimates in part
on current expenditures for the reclamation of abandoned cod mines under the Abandoned
Mine Land program-
Indiana: Total remediation costs = $450,244,000. Remediation costs are based on
experience under the Indiana Abandoned Mine Land program.

Iowa: Remediation costs in Iowa are considered to be negligible.
Louisiana: Total remediation costs = $114,450,980. Louisiana bases its estimates on
best professional judgement given actual reclamation costs associated with active noncoal
Maine: Total remediation costs are not reported by Maine in its Inactive and
Abandoned Mine Lands Report.
Maryland: Total remediation costs = $25 million. Maryland's cost estimates are
based upon actual costs incurred by the state in its existing non-fuel abandoned mine
Mississippi: Total remediation costs = $23,660,000. This estimate is based on best
professional judgement using actual reclamation costs associated with active mining opera-
New York: Total remediation costs are not reported by New York in its Inactive and
Abandoned Mine Lands Summary Report.
North Carolina: Total remediation costs = $22,580,800. This estimate is based on a
study conducted by the North Carolina Mining Commission in 1987 in which estimated
reclamation costs per acre were established for several categories of mining.
Ohio: Total remediation costs = $48 million. These costs were established Using per
acre figures developed by the Ohio AML coal program.
Oklahoma: Total remediation costs = $86,857,000. Cost estimates are based on
experience under the Oklahoma Abandoned Mine Land program for coal.
Pennsyivama: Total remediation costs = $220,500,000. Pennsylvania bases its
estimates on a per acre cost of $7,000 which is the average cost for reclaiming abandoned
coal sites in the state.
Texas: Total remediation costs = $1,026,944,000. Cost estimates are based on coal,
uranium, mercury and tin abandoned mine reclamation projects completed by the Texas
Abandoned Mine Land progTam.
Virginia: Total remediation costs = $123,010,000. Cost estimates are based on
guidelines for estimating coal AML reclamation costs using the AML Inventory Update
Manual published by the Office of Surface Mining.

Analysis of cost data: A major reason why cost estimates provided by each state are
not comparable between states is due to the varying definitions used for inactive and
abandoned mines. As an example, Nevada did not include environmental remediation
projects or associated costs when most other states did. Montana included Superfund site
remediation estimates when most other states excluded these sites (except for Colorado
which included some mines within Superfund boundaries but not others). Florida did not
include the remediation costs of phosphogypsum dumps in their cost estimates. To gain
further understanding of an individual state's cost estimate process and priorities, it is
beneficial to review the state regulation and cost estimate methods in the final state reports
(see Volume II for WGA Mine Waste Task Force states and Volume III for Interstate Coalition
on Mine Waste states).
Inventory Needs:
States do not have funds to adequately inventory LAM sites. This review of LAM
problems, which is based on existing information, may prove to be accurate in the states that
have conducted field inventories, but may have serious deficiencies in those states where no
field data exists. Past experience with inventory efforts has confirmed that field data is the
only information that can provide an accurate picture of the size and character of LAM
Of the 34 reporting states, only seven states have performed noncoal field inventories
to verify the actual problem. Data uncertainties remain even after such an inventory effort.
For example, after an expensive field inventory effort performed in the State of Montana, the.;
state is only 75% confident the data is accurate. When an expenditure of SI million dollars .
on field inventory results in only a 75% confidence value, the potential for poor estimation of
the true problem in a literature review is apparent.
The State of Idaho, a non-SMCRA program state, has estimated costs for field
inventory of LAM sites at approximately $300,000 annually over a period of five years, for a
total of SI.5 million. These costs compare well with actual expenditures in the State of
Montana. Since both these states have extensive historic noncoal mining, these costs
probably represent the maximum. States with fewer problem sites and more accessible
terrain would have lower costs.
The Office of Surface Mining has spent an estimated $13 million for the National
Inventory of coal mines since 1977, but this figure does not include all associated
administrative costs. This cost estimate does not recognize additional state cost for the same •
inventory. As an example, the State of West Virginia cites its coal inventory costs in excess
of $2 million. In the West, Colorado has encountered coal and noncoal inventory costs of
over $400,000 and Montana has inventory costs in excess of SI million. The total cost, state
and federal, for the National Inventory of coal mines could easily be double the $13 million
officially cited.

Recently, federal land management
agencies have considered inventories of
hazardous or toxic sites on their property.
Federal regulations under the Comprehensive
Environmental Response, Compensation and
Liability Act (CERCLA) and the Resource
Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) have
prompted this concern. The Bureau of Land
Management, U.S. Forest Service and National
Park Service concern for liability under these
laws and for safety problems is increasing.
Past experience with inventory efforts
has confirmed that field data is the only
information that can provide an accurate
picture of the size and character of IAM
problems. Any future efforts by states or the
federal government to expand the limited
inventory of IAMs should benefit from the
lessons learned from the inventory efforts under SMCRA- The Office of Surface Mining and
24 SMCRA program states have been conducting inventories of abandoned coal mines since
1979. The lessons learned by OSM and the states include the following:
A)	Establish well thought-out inventory goals and instructions and then maintain the
standards throughout the inventory. The OSM survey was performed numerous times. Many
sites were visited 3 or 4 times at unnecessary cost.
B)	Keep the inventory crew as small as possible to minimize inconsistencies in
reporting methods. The OSM inventory was performed by numerous people in different
states and the data was not comparable between states because different criteria and
definitions were used. The 1989 OSM inventory "scrub" mandated by Congress was
performed by a crew dedicated to the inventory. They reviewed over 4,000 sites in 22 states
one summer, using helicopters. The resulting data from all inventoried sites was comparable
and consistent.
C)	Minimize the influence on the inventory by parties with vested interest in the
results. The major reason the OSM inventory had to be scrubbed was because grant funds to
states were based upon numbers of sites identified. The data was drastically skewed in
various states.
D)	Have future federally-sponsored inventories planned, coordinated and standardized
before field work is carried out. It makes good sense for the different agencies to standardize
data collection so that it will be useful to all parties. Learning from past experience would
save millions of dollars.
The state of Pennsylvania estimates chat
they spent $4.9 million on abandoned coal
mine inventories. As an example of how
cost estimates can vary over time,
Pennsylvania's estimates for what
abandoned coal mine reclamation would
cost changed as follows:
Pre 1986 estimate ¦ S0.9 billion
1987 estimate « 1.7 billion
Post 1989 estimate « 1.0 billion
The post 1989 decrease in cost is related
to the Office of Surface Mining 1989
"scrub" of highwalls.

E)	Use state-of-the-art imagery from satellites, geographic information systems,
photographic and mulrispectral digitizing systems. The latest satellite global positioning
system should be used to assure accurate location of all sites. Inventory planning should
incorporate review of similar projects and employ experienced personnel to save time and
expenses. Portable computers with properly designed and debugged software should be
incorporated into the field to provide direct data entry rather than time consuming and error -
prone transcription of manual records.
F)	Match field equipment and techniques to specific terrain requirements. In open
terrain and light timber, helicopters have proven to be one of the most cost effective and
accurate inventory tools. Where timber is heavy and landing sites minimal, ground inventory
using 4-wheel drive ATVs transported to remote sites on trailers has proven effective. In very
open terrain when an on-the-ground inspection isn't necessary and sites are scattered, fixed-
wing aircraft have also proven cost-effective.
G) Time inventories depending upon seasonal vegetation cover. Winter, spring or fall
may be the best times for aerial inventory because of the lack of foliage. Spring, summer
and fall are more efficient for ground inventory techniques because of access and
temperarure conditions.
Each inventory plan should be evaluated to maximize efficiency, precision and
accuracy. Consideration of long-term goals and uses may save costly reinventory.
Inventory Instructions:
In October 1990, the LAM Advisory Committee of the WGA Mine Waste Task Force
developed guidance for states to use in review and reporting existing 1AM data. The
guidance was used by states reporting through the WGA and through the 1MCC. The
guidance gave states broad latitude to include various types of hardrock mine problems they
deemed eligible. Only "aesthetic"5 considerations were rejected and any noncoal mineral was
accepted. Instructions asked that states report the size and cost estimates for remediating
any environmentally damaging or hazardous disturbances associated with
inactive/abandoned noncoal mines.
Participants were requested to provide narrative summaries of historical noncoal
mining practices in their states. The narrative summaries were to outline mining impacts to
the environment as well as safety problems. A data summary table was provided as an
outline for each state to compile cost and size information. The table was broken down by
mineral type, mining type, ownership, mine fearures and reclamation cost.
5 Not related to public health and safety or environmental protection

Nineteen (19) states on the WGA Mine Waste Task Force were asked to participate in
the inventory. Eighteen (18) of these states entered into contracts with the Western
Governors' Association to provide information. Individual summaries for each state are
attached. These states and the lead agency are:
Department of Natural Resources
Department of Environmental Quality
Water Resources Control Board
Department of Natural Resources
Department of Natural Resources
Division of Environmental Quality
Department of Natural Resources
Department of Natural Resources
Department of State Lands
Department of Minerals
Department of Narural Resources
Department of Geology
Division of Mining and Reclamation
Department of Water and Narural Resources
Division of Oil, Gas and Mining
Department of Ecology
Department of Natural Resources
Department of Environmental Quality
Michigan elected not to participate although it has unreclaimed abandoned mines.
Washington did not submit a report.

(Interstate Coalition on Mine Waste)
The Interstate Mining Compact Commission (IMCC) conducted a similar inventory
effort in sixteen (16) states out of a potential twenty five (25) requested to participate. The
same forms and instructions used in the WGA inventory were used in the IMCC effort. The
states cooperating in the IMCC inventory and the lead agency are:
Department of Industrial Relations
Department of Pollution Control and Ecology
Department of Mines and Minerals
Department of Natural Resources
Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship
Department of Natural Resource, Injection and Mining Division
Department of Environmental Protection
Department of Natural Resources
Department of Environmental Quality
Department of Environmental Conservation
Department of Environment, Health & Natural Resources
Department of Natural Resources
Oklahoma Conservation Commission
Department of Environmental Resources
Texas Railroad Commission
Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy.
Nine states declined to participate in the IMCC survey. These states are Connecticut,
Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, Nebraska, New Jersey, Tennessee, Vermont and West Virginia.
The extent of LAM problems in these states is not known. However, severe copper smelting
impacts are known to occur in southeast Kentucky and north Georgia.
The six states not invited to participate in either the IMCC or WGA inventory efforts
were assumed to have fewer noncoal mining impacts. These States are:
Indian Tribes were not parties in this inventory effort, however, several Tribes with
known inactive/abandoned noncoal mines were invited to submit information in any form
for inclusion into this report. No information was received from Tribes.

Approaches Used By States:
Instructions sent to States by WGA included reference? to known national data bases
that contain information relative to inactive/abandoned noncoal mines. States requesting
information were sent copies of data base summaries from U.S. Bureau of Mines and U.S.
Geological Survey. Information existing in National Park Service (NPS) and Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) files was also supplied.
States were also encouraged to use existing expertise in state and federal agencies.
Several states used questionnaires sent out to a number of state and federal agencies; some
states had good success with this technique. Field personnel from environmental and natural
resource agencies are usually able to report environmental or safety problems. For example,
a good source of information concerning surface water contamination is contained in annual
reports filed by state water quality regulatory authorities. This information generally
provides data on miles of polluted streams and identifies the source of this pollution.
!n a number of cases, states with existing abandoned mine reclamation programs
under SMCRA had some form of noncoal inventory. Though SMCRA is a coal reclamation
law, portions of the Act did provide for reclamation of hazardous noncoal mining problems if
requested by the Governor and approved by the Office of Surface Mining. Some western coal
producing states have been conducting noncoal inventories since 1979- Such inventories,
however, focused primarily on public health and safety hazards, such as open shafts and
adits. Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana have spent significant funds on field inventories
and, consequently, have fairly complete inventories.
In other instances, as in Nevada, states have compiled good records concerning size
and location of unreclaimed and abandoned mine facilities. The Nevada program uses a
state fee placed on all mining claim filings to fund this effort. In Nevada, the primary
emphasis is on safety problems associated with open adits and shafts. Other states with fairly
well developed inventories include Illinois, Indiana, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia.
Recently there have been more concerted efforts by federal land management
agencies to inventory hazardous materials including abandoned mine properties. The State
of California used U.S. Forest Service (USFS) data from a recent inventory on one of the
National Forests. Data from the BLM, USFS and NPS have helped states complete their
States without existing coal reclamation programs or state noncoal reclamation
programs faced the difficult task of estimating numbers, size and reclamation cost with very
little data or experience. In these cases, states were encouraged to provide their best
estimate of the problem, using all possible information sources. States were encouraged to
make cost estimates using neighboring states' remediation costs. Several states had to
estimate the number of problem mines and the acreage of each site by comparing total
numbers of sites listed on national inventories with numbers of problem sites listed for
neighboring states. A percentage confidence figure for estimates was requested, and in many

cases confidence figures as low as 20% were listed, i.e., the states judged there was a chance
for 80 percent error from the acrual occurrence in the field.
The data listed wi;hou: any field validation is in many cases an educated estimate
with no means of verification unless a very extensive field review is conducted. Past
experience has shown no other means to accurately verify the extent of the problem except
through field work.

WGA Mine Waste Task Force States
Participating State: Alaska
Representing Agency. Department of Narura] Resources
Division of Mining
Agency Contact: Mitch Henning (907) 762-2109
Address: P.O. Box 107016, Anchorage, Alaska 99510-2170
PRIMARY mtnprai.£ MINED: Past production of metallic minerals include gold, antimony,
copper, chromium, lead, mercury, platinum, silver, tin, tungsten, zinc and uranium.
; Industrial and construction commodities include barite, building stone, limestone, peat and
sand and gravel. Mining methods included underground, surface and placer. Metallic ore
processing included mercury amalgamation, cyanidadon, and flotation.
STATE RECTI-AMATTQN LAWS: An inactive or abandoned mine has been defined as a mine
which was "left or abandoned in either an unreclaimed or inadequately reclaimed condition
and was pan of a mining operation activity occurring before October 15, 1991."
Abandoned Mine Lands (AML) program has not expended any funds on noncoal projects.
There is a proposal to close portals and mine openings at the Treadwell Mine. Any noncoal
reclamation has been performed by state agencies, U.S. Dept. of Interior and private
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total acreage estimates for metallic ores and construction ores
is 27,680 acres.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: It is estimated that over $5 to $10 million will be
required to remediate the state's remaining IAM noncoal sites.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: A systematic inventory of inactive/abandoned noncoal
mines has not been conducted within Alaska at this time. However, data on selected sites
using field investigations, survey of recreationists, published literature and public input
results in a 90% to 70% data confidence level. The EPA has identified twelve 1AM sites in
Alaska; these sites are also included on the state Department of Environmental Conservation
list of oil and hazardous waste sites.

Participating State: Arizona	j
Representing Agency: Arizona State Mine inspector	j
Agency Contact: William C. Vanderwall (602) 542-5971
Asst. State Mine Inspector
Address: 1616 West Adams Suite 411, Phoenix, Arizona 85007
PRIMARY MTNFRAI-S MINED: Past production of ores includes gold, silver, copper, lead,
zinc, molybdenum, uranium, tungsten, manganese, asbestos and vanadium. Industrial and
construction minerals include cement, clay, perlite, pumice, sand and gravel aggregate, silica,
stone, salt, fluorspar, gemstones, gypsum, lime and zeolites.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Abandoned mine is defined as an excavation where mining
operations have been permanently terminated or for which no operator, owner or other
claimant can be located. Inactive mine is defined as an operation not conducting mining for
more than six months or where operations have been temporarily suspended.
mine operators, owners or other claimants to secure abandoned and inactive mines upon
notification of the state mine inspector. Approximately $20,000 per year is allocated to
investigate dangerous conditions associated with past mining activity. There is also a
volunteer abandoned mine program which encourages the elimination of hundreds of
hazardous mine openings annually. Arizona reports there have been nine incidents resulting
in death and injury. Investigation of LAM environmental impacts and remediation is limited
due to inadequate funding.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Arizona estimates a total of 80,000 IAM sites with an estimate
of 96,653 acres of disturbed land, 40,000 acres of mine dumps and 200.2 miles of polluted
waters. Estimates are not reported for highwalls, subsidence prone areas and hazardous
structures. Uranium overburden is not reported. These sites do not include Indian lands.
IAM RRMFDIATTON COST ESTIMATE: Total estimated remediation cost is $654,200,300.
No reclamation costs were included for 1AM construction ores sites as they are considered
inactive mines which could be reactivated on demand and upon reactivation must follow
state law dictating closure practices.
INVENTORY CONFIDFNfT t FVFI - Confidence levels for data sources on IAM sites and
associated impacts range from 9S% for construction aggregate deposits to 50% for other

Participating State: California
Representing Agency: State Water Resources Control Board
Division of Clean Water Programs
Agency Contact: Rick Humphreys or Harry M. Schueller
(916) 739-4223
Address: P.O. Box 944212, Sacramento, CA 94244
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Dominant mining activities included the production of gold,
mercury, copper, borate and sand and gTavel. Primary mining methods include underground
and open pit. Processing of gold included methods of mercury amalgamation and
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Mine reclamation is administered through approximately 110
local government entities under the 1975 Surface Mining and Reclamation Act. No official
definition of abandoned or inactive mines is included in the state inactive/abandoned mine
systematic program to close underground mine openings. Concern is expressed over
environmental and health and safety impacts. Acid mine drainage, metals loading in surface
waters, contamination by ore processing compounds and cyanide, and elevated mercury levels
in soils are major environmental impacts. Attempts to remediate copper mine impacts have
been unsuccessful to date.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: California estimates there are at least 2,484 inactive and
abandoned mine sites, 1,685 mine openings, 578 miles of polluted water, 171 mine dumps
and 36 mill sites. No estimates were made as to subsidence prone areas, hazardous
structures, smelters, miles of highwalls and disturbed land acreage.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: No remediation cost estimates given.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Principal data source is the California Water Resources
Control Board Basin Planning Study - Principal Areas of Mine Pollution, (1972). The location
of underground mine workings is considered highly accurate. Data on aggregate mining is
less accurate because of rapid expansion of operations since 1972, due to the increased
growth in the construction industries.

Participating State: Colorado
Representing Agency: Department of N'arural Resources
Mined Land Reclamation Division
Agency Contact: Dave Bucitnam (303) 866-3567
Address: 1313 Sherman St. Room 215, Denver, Colorado 80203
PRIMARY MiNFRAt <; MINED: Past production of metallic ores include gold, silver, lead,
zinc, tungsten, copper, iron, uranium, moiybedum, tin and vanadium. Past production of
industrial ores include fluorspar, gypsum, beryl, limestone and perlite. Construction ores
include sand and gTavel, clays, sandstone, marble, aggregate, granite and pumice.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mine sites are defined as ones
which: operated before, and ceased operation prior to, 1977; and, a property where there is
no continuing reclamation responsibility by the owner, claimant/lessee. Reported sites may
be on permitted mining properties, but the current mine operators are not under obligation
to reclaim pre-law disturbances.
reclamation program has safeguarded about 1,865 hazardous non-coal mine openings in
various parts of the state, averaging 450 sites per year. Colorado reports 21 injuries and 16
fatalities at LAM sites from 1955 to 1989.
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Colorado estimates the total number of mine openings =
20,299, disturbed land = 13,486 acres, mine dumps = 11,800 acres, polluted water = 1,298
miles, hazardous structures = 1,125, millsites = 615, smelters = 32, subsidence prone areas
= 0, and highwalls = 0.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Cost estimates are based on past experience with IAM
site reclamation. Total construction and administrative costs are estimated to be
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Estimated figures are judged to be accurate plus or
minus 10%.

Participating State: Florida
Representing Agency: Florida Department of Natural Resources
Bureau of Mine Reclamation
Agency Contact: Joe Bakker (904) 488-8217
Address: 2051 East Dirac Drive, Tallahassee, Florida 32310
PRIMARY MTMERAI-S MINED: Past mining production includes phosphate, limestone,
dolomite, sand and gravel and clays. Heavy minerals, include mole, zircon, leucoxene,
ilemnite and monazite. All extraction is surface mining.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mine lands are those which have no
state or federal requirement that the landowner or former mine operator reclaim the land
and which the state considers may warrant state or federal intervention to remove serious
environmental, health and safety impacts. With the exception of phosphate, the state has no
program for the reclamation of abandoned mine lands. Limestone, sand and gravel or clays
are not considered eligible for remediation. In 1975, Florida passed mandatory reclamation
laws for phosphate, fuller's earth and other clays, and heavy minerals. For all other
resources, reclamation is required on lands mined after 1986.
have been reclaimed voluntarily by mine operators and landowners for other uses such as
housing developments or wildlife habitats. Private phosphate reclamation activities began in
the 1960's. The enabling state legislation was enacted in 1971 and amended in 1975. From
fiscal year 84/85 to 91/92, $54,810,411 has been approved for reclamation projects for
phosphate sites.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Inventory acreage is limited to phosphate mine sites for a total
of 49,020 acres of mine dumps (clay settling ponds) and 13,060 acres for other areas which
are not clay settling ponds. Phosogypsum, a by-product of the chemical processing of
phosphate rock, is not included in this inventory.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total estimated reclamation costs are $137 million
for mine dumps and $55 million for all other areas that are not clay settling ponds.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Estimated confidence levels for phosphate mandatory
lands - 90%.

Participating State: Idaho
Representing Agency: Department of Health and Welfare
Division of Environmental Quality
Agency Contact: Bruce Schuld (208) 334-0543
Address: 1410 Hilton, Boise, Idaho 83706
PRIMARY MTNp.RAl.S MINED: Past production of metallic minerals include gold, silver, lead,
copper, thorium, tungsten, antimony, cobalt and columbium. Gemstones include garnets,
beryl and diamonds. Construction ores include stone, sand and gravel, travertine, quartzite
and clay. Industrial minerals include phosphate, pumice, silica, diatomite and asbestos.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive mine means any surface or underground construction
developed for excavation and benefication of mineral ores that is being retained as private
land under the U.S. Mining Act of 1872 and is designated by the legal claimant(s) as
temporarily closed, except as required for annual assessment work. Abandoned mine means
any surface or underground construction which was developed for removal and benefication -
of mineral ores but is not being retained as private land under the U.S. Mining Act of 1872
and is not designated by any legal daimant(s) as temporarily closed.
an inactive and abandoned mine lands reclamation program. Reclamation work done has
been performed on select inactive or abandoned sites by Federal agencies (EPA, USFS, BPA)
and mining companies which have reaffected an abandoned mining area.
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: No comprehensive field survey has been done; it is estimated
there are 8,700 mineral location exploration sites with a total impacted acreage of 27,543
acres of disturbed land and mine dumps.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Idaho estimates $1.5 million will be needed to do a
field inventory of 1AM sites for the state. The state report estimates that reclamation costs
would be $315,566,900.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE irvFi- for the purposes of this report the information from the
USBM, USGS and BLM data systems is considered accurate to 75%. Information from the
Idaho Nonpoint Source assessment (IDHW, 1988) is approximately 40% accurate; surface
water data from the EPA is judged to be 90% accurate.

Participating State: Minnesota
Representing Agency: Department of Natural Resources
Minerals Division
Agency Contact: Arlo Knoll (218) 262-6767
Address: P.O. Box 567, Hibbing, Minnesota 55746
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Past production of metallic minerals in Minnesota is limited
to natural iron ore and taconite. Sand and gravel, peat and silica operations are not included
in this report due to lack of data on numbers, location and area.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Abandoned mine lands means all properties that are not
disturbed after August 1980. At this time the only abandoned mines in Minnesota are natural
iron ore mines.
costs are not given. Directed by past studies, reclamation funds have been used to eliminate
dangerous areas, establish vegetation, eliminate erosion and dust problems and create other
uses for abandoned mine sites i.e., recreation, wildlife habitat and/or reforestation- The
County Mine Inspector Program is responsible for enforcing the fencing of inactive and active
pits for safety purposes. Environmental impacts have been limited and are decreasing due to
natural slope stabilization and revegetation efforts by the County Mine Inspector Program
and the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB).
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Minnesota reports a total of 649 inactive/abandoned mine sites
and 7 mill sites. Total acreage estimates for metallic ore sites and features is 171,117 acres
and total miles for pirwalls is 516. These acreage and feature values are limited to the
Mesabi Range mine sites. No information is available regarding polluted water and there is
limited data on environmental impacts.
LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Cost figures are not reported.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Confidence levels are not addressed.

Participating State: Missouri
Representing Agency. Department of Natural Resources
Division of Environmental Quality
Agency Contact: James Bums (314) 785-0832
Address: P.O. Box 1420, Poplar Bluff, Missouri 63901
PRIMARY MINFRA1-S MINF.O- Past production of metallic minerals mined include lead, zinc,
iron, copper, manganese, cobalt, nickel and silver. Construction ores include limestone, sand
and gravel, dolomite, sandstone, granite and chert. Industrial ores include barite, clay, silica,
tripoli and tar sand. Past mining practices include underground, quarries, and
dredging/stripping operations. Processing methods included smelters, roasting furnaces and
chemical and mechanical separators.
STATE Rpn.AMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mine lands are defined as those
which were abandoned prior to 1971 and have no existing reclamation responsibility by any
individual, company or governmental agency. Underground workings are not regulated.
available for reclaiming non-coal mine lands abandoned prior to 1971. Some private
landowners have attempted co safeguard dangerous sites. EPA has conducted Superfund
reclamation work at an abandoned lead/'zinc site.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Acreage total estimates listed under the "Disturbed Land"
heading represent all mine related features and lands affected by mining, as measured from
USGS, Soil Conservation Service, and USFS aerial photos. Total affected acreage is 48,175
I AM RRMF-DLATION COST ESTIMATE: Total cost estimates to reclaim LAM sites is
$1,352,716,500. This includes the following LAM features: polluted water, mine dumps,
disturbed land, highwalls, mine openings and subsidence prone areas. Please see Missouri
Report, Footncees- to Data Summary Table and Appendix 1.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Data quality is high (between 95% to 98%) for nearly all
of Missouri's reported mine sites in regard to mine location, commodity mined, and acreage
affected by mining. Descriptions and/or knowledge of individual mining features are
approximately 90% accurate at those mines where field work or air-photo analysis was done,

Participating State: Montana
Representing Agency: Department of State Lands
Reclamation Division
Agency Contact: Sandi Olsen (406) 444-2074
Address: Capitol Station, Helena, Montana 59620
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Past production of metallic minerals include antimony, gold,
silver, platinum, palladium, lead, copper, chromite, zinc, iron, molybdenum, titanium and
tungsten. Industrial ores include barite, bentonite, chlorite, fluorspar, graphite, gypsum,
limestone, peat, sapphires, semiprecious stones, silica, talc and vermiculite. Construction ores
include sand, gravel and quarry stone. Limited production occurred for uranium and thorium
ores in Montana.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mines are defined as those sites
where there is no continuing reclamation responsibility by an owner or operator. These sites
include disturbances created prior to 1971.
been performed by several state agencies, the EPA and private companies. Over $30 million
has been spent by all parties to remediate noncoal LAM problems. The Montana AML
program has spent over S9 million on noncoal reclamation since 1979.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Montana estimates total mine sites = 19,751, millsites =
1,183, smelters = 1,057, polluted water = 1,118 miles, mine dumps = 14,038 acres,
disturbed land = 20, 862 acres, highwalls = 466 miles, mine openings = 4,868, subsidence
prone areas = 1,845 acres, hazardous strucrures = 1,1747. Under "Other", Montana
estimates 147,150 acres including exploratory drill holes, impacts associated with five EPA
National Priority List sites and acres of contaminated stream bank sediments and soil
contamination from smelter emissions.
1AM RF.MF.niATION COST ESTIMATE: Remediation estimates are based on previous
reclamation projects funded by Montana state agencies; primarily the Montana Abandoned
Mine Reclamation Bureau. Total estimated costs are over $912,280,000. These include the
categories of polluted water, mine dumps, disturbed land, highwalls, mine openings and
hazardous structures.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: The Montana Abandoned Mine Reclamation Bureau
reports a 75% confidence level on IAM metallic mine sires. The Montana Open Cut Bureau
reports a 20% confidence level on the pre-law industrial and construction mineral LAM sites.

Participating State: Nevada

Representing Agency: Department of Minerals

Agency Contact: Doug Driesner (702) 687-5050

Address: 400 West King Street, Carson City, Nevada 89710

PRIMARY MINERAI-S M^nrtv Past mineral production includes gold, silver, magnetite,
mercury and barite. Other minerals include gypsum, diatomite, copper, molybdenum, lithium
and rungsten. Construction ores include sand, gravel and limesrone.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mines relate to "dangerous
condition." A dangerous condition is one which exists at the site of an inoperating mine that
could reasonably be expected to cause physical harm to people or animals. The Nevada
contact estimates there have been 15 fatalities in the past 20 years as well as numerous
injuries at abandoned mine sites.
reclamation was not required under state law until 1990 and then only for orphaned mines. -
Rare subsidence prone areas are reported to local government authorities.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Nevada estimates the total number of mine openings =
50,000, mine dumps and disturbed land = 1,000 acres and highwalls = 6 miles. Estimates
are not given for millsites, smelters, polluted water, subsidence prone areas and hazardous
structures. It is estimated there are 300,000 abandoned mines of which 50,000 pose
significant hazards. Industrial ores are not inventoried. Indian lands were not included in
the report.
LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Costs for safeguarding hazardous mine openings is
estimated to be $600 per opening or $2,529,000. It is also estimated that 85% of the mine
openings currently reported have a responsible party who is required to secure the hazard(s)
at their own expense.
INVENTORY CQHFIDENrp,	Quality of data as far as hazard type, degree of hazard,
location and description is generally 100% as it is logged in the field. Data involving
ownership or status of flaitns is estimated to be 95% accurate. For the 50,000 estimated sites
which are not field verified, the confidence level is 80%.

Participating State: New Mexico
Representing Agency: Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources
Mining and Minerals Division
Agency Contact: Rick Koehler
Address: 2040 South Pacheco, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505
PRIMARY mtnt-r Ai.S MINFIY Past mining production includes copper, gold, silver,
molybdenum, uranium, potash, gypsum, arsenic, beryllium, lead, manganese, nickel, radium,
tungsten, halite, fluorspar, rare earths, iron, vanadium, zinc and precious and semi-precious
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mines, for the purpose of this report,
are all sites which are not registered with the State Mine Registration Bureau as "active"
. mines, supplemented by the U.S. Bureau of Mines Mineral Industry Location System.
New Mexico which enables the remediation of abandoned mines. A few mines have been
reclaimed under Title IV of SMCRA and current mining operations are regulated in part by
Federal and state clean air and water legislation. The New Mexico Mine Registration,
Reporting and Safeguarding Regulations require the safeguarding of current and future mine
surface openings when mine operations are suspended and there is no one present to prevent
access by the public.
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: New Mexico estimates the total number of abandoned mines =
7,222, millsites = 132, smelters = 7, polluted water = 69 miles, mine dumps = 6,335 acres,
disturbed land = 25,320 acres, highwalls = 33.1 miles, mine openings = 13,666, subsidence
prone areas = 1,444 acres and hazardous structures = 658.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Estimated total cost is $331,922,050. Reclamation
costs are calculated by the cost-per-feature guide which has been developed by the New
Mexico AML program from previous reclamation work and supplemented by information
. from the BLM, construction industry groups, and various state and federal agencies. Please
refer to state survey report for confidence levels of cost estimated per mine feature, Le.,
polluted water, mine dumps, disturbed land.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Polluted water = 50%, disturbed land = 60%,
subsidence prone = 65%, mine openings = 80%, mine dumps = 55%, highwalls = 50%,
hazardous structures = 55%.

Participating State: Oregon
Representing Agency: Dept. of Geology and Mineral Industries
Mined Land Reclamation
Agency Contact: Gary Lynch (503) 967-2039
Address: 1534 Queen Avenue SE, Albany, Oregon 97321
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Oregon has had production of metallics, construction and
industrial ores, uranium and some gem sites.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: For the purposes of this report, abandoned/inactive mines
are those which are non-permitted mining activities.
been limited to the reclamation of one abandoned coal site by the U.S. Office of Surface
Mining. Two uranium sites are being reviewed by the USFS and state agencies.
Approximately $12 million has been appropriated to deal with the sites. The sites involve
both public and private lands. Questions remain as to the applicability of the federal funds
on private lands.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Oregon estimates there is a total of 3,500 abandoned mine
sites covering 9,200 acres, including metallic and construction ores, that exist pre-law and are
considered abandoned and eligible for reclamation. This does not include uranium
overburden. Oregon lacks a field inventory of abandoned mine sites.
rAM RF.MFDIATlON COST ESTIMATE: Total estimated reclamation costs are $57 million to
$77 million, including features of polluted water, mine dumps, disturbed land, mine
openings, highwalls and hazardous structures. This does not include uranium overburden
mines, millsites and waste dumps.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Confidence levels are not reported, but estimates given
are based on state information sources. Summary report data is based on the Geographic
Information 3yatem (GIS) which indicates 1/10 of 1 percent of the land area has been
disturbed by mining, or 61,000 acres, [t is estimated that 31,000 of those acres have been ¦*
disturbed as a result of construction ore and 30,000 from metallic ores. It was assumed 20 t
percent of the construction ore sites and 10 percent of the metallic ore sites were abandoned
and in need of reclamation.

Participating State: South Carolina
Representing Agency: Land Resource Conservation Commission
Mining and Reclamation Division
Agency Contact: Craig Kennedy (803) 734-9100
Address: 2221 Devine Street, Suite 222, Columbia, S.C. 29205
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: South Carolina has produced metallic minerals, including
gold, silver nickel, cobalt, copper, tin, lead, manganese, iron and titanium. Industrial
minerals include kaolinite, silica, baiite, mica, feldspar, corundum, talc, phosphate,
vermiculite, peat, asbestos, monazite and fullers earth. Construction ores include sand and
gravel, clays, granite and limestone.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Mining in South Carolina is regulated by the South Carolina
Mining Act. Land that was disturbed by mining prior to July 1, 1974, and has not been
disturbed by any mining related activities since July 1, 1974, is not regulated by the Mining
Act and is classified as an abandoned mine. The South Carolina Pollution Control Act is
administered by the South Carolina Dept. of Health and Environmental Control which
coordinates with the Land Resource Conservation Commission in regulating the mining
industry. There is no mandate to reclaim abandoned mine sites, other than the incentives
provided to mining companies through the South Carolina Mining Act.
have an active program to reclaim abandoned mines.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: There are an estimated 19,177 acres of disturbed land,
including 520 acres of mine dumps, 40 acres of subsidence prone areas, 20 mill sites, 25
miles of polluted water, 211 miles of highwalls, and 110 mine openings.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total cost estimate for remediation is $10,796,000.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Confidence in data sources for this report is 75%.
Sources used were the following: South Carolina Land Resources Commission Abandoned
Mine Inventory, with emphasis on construction minerals; South Carolina Geologic Survey
and the USGS data bases for metallic, phosphate and industrial ore mines; and the South
Carolina Land Resources Commission Abandoned Phosphate Mine Inventory.

Participating State: South Dakota
Representing Agency: Dept. of Water and Natural Resources
Office of Mining and Minerals
Agency Contact: Mike Cepak (605) 773-4201
Address: 523 East Capitol, Pierre, S.D. 57501
PRIMARY MTNERA^-ft MINED: Past production of metallic minerals include beryllium,
columbite, copper, gold, iron, lead, manganese, silver, tantalum, uranium, vanadium, tin,
tungsten, and zinc. Production of construction ores include calcium, gypsum, mica, sand and
gravel, and stone. Production of industrial ores include bentonite, clays, feldspar, lithium,
sodium, and sulfur. Principal commodity types on inactive and abandoned lands are sand,
gold, feldspar and uranium.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mines are defined as sites where
there is no continuing reclamation responsibility by an owner and/or an operator. For this
report, IAMs include mines, prospects, millsites and smelters.
mines has been achieved by limited state funding, current state reclamation laws, reclamation
in lieu of penalty for permit violations, reclamation on federal lands and reclamation for
acreage expansion. A total of $31,000 was deposited into an earmarked fund for the
reclamation of IAM sites, $11,000 \vas used to partially reclaim a uranium mine, the
remaining $20,000 is to be used to reclaim abandoned sand and gravel sites as wildlife
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: It is estimated there are 1,042 inactive and abandoned non-
coal sites in South Dakota with an estimated total of 8,375 acres of disturbed land. Uranium
overburden is not reported.
IAM ftF.MP.niATION COST ESTIMATE: No cost estimates are given.
INVENTOfPf CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Data source confidence levels range from 25% for sand
and gravel, gold, uranium, and silver to 10% for bentonite and clays.

Participating State: Utah
Representing Agency: Dept. of Natural Resources
Division of Oil, Gas and Mining
Agency Contact: Mary Ann Wright (801)538-5340
Address: 355 West North Temple, 3 Triad Center,
Salt Lake City, Utah 84140-1203
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Past production of metallic ores includes gold, silver, lead and
copper. Nonmetallics include potash, phosphate and salt. Uranium has been mined since the
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Abandoned mines are defined by using the "no continuing
reclamation responsibility" language of the 1977 Surface Mining Control Reclamation Act to
determine eligibility for funding. Inactive mines are permitted mines that have suspended
operations. These sites have a reclamation responsibility under the Utah Mine Land
Reclamation Act of 1975.
Reclamation Program has completed 8 noncoal reclamation projects totalling $1.15 million.
A total of 364 openings have been sealed to date. Reclamation efforts have been limited to
the closure of entries at high priority sites; there has been no environmental rehabilitation.
Emphasis has been placed on physical safety hazards due to the large number of openings
and recorded deaths and injuries at noncoal sites, and restrictions on the use of SMCRA
funding to sealing of entries (see Utah, Appendix A).
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total estimated acreage for mine site disturbed land, mine
dumps and subsidence prone areas is 25,020 acres. Total estimated miles of polluted water is
83 miles and additional problems are expected to exist. Highwalls estimate is 98 miles.
Total estimated number of hazardous structures is 293. Total estimated mine openings is
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total estimated remediation costs are $174,790,000.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Estimated figures are judged to represent the problem,
plus or minus 35%.

Participating State: Wisconsin
Representing Agency: Department of Natural Resources
Agency Contact: Lawrence Lynch (608) 267-7553
Address: Box 7921, Madison, Wisconsin 53707
PRIMARY mtmp.RAI5« MINED: Past production of metallic ores include zinc, lead and iron.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: No definition reported, however mining operations ceased in
or subsidence problems have been fenced.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: The state estimares there are waste piles covering 200 acres,
700 vertical shafts, 65 incline adits, and over 27,000 drill holes. There are an estimated 20
to 30 piles of milling waste material which are a source of surface water contamination.
Underground (down to 3500 feet), iron mining activity resulted in unreclaimed mine
openings and subsidence problems.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Cost estimates prepared in the late 1970's for filling
or partially filling the hazardous mine opening for abandoned iron mines ranged up to $3
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Not addressed in report.

Participating State: Wyoming
Representing Agency: Department of Environmental Quality
Land Quality Division
Agency Contact: Mark Moxley
Address: 210 Lincoln Street, Lander, Wyoming 82520
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Metallic ores produced in Wyoming include gold, copper and
iron ores. Industrial minerals include sodium carbonate, and bentonite. Uranium has been
mined extensively since the 1950's. Other mining production includes phosphate, gypsum,
limestone, sulfur, feldspar and aggregate materials.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Abandoned mine lands are defined as lands affected by
mining operations prior to 1969.
inventory of abandoned mine sites from 1980-1983, Wyoming's abandoned mine lands
program has been operational with the initial emphasis on past coal mining operations. By
1985, remediation efforts were shifted to eligible noncoal sites. Wyoming expenditures for
reclamation of noncoal sites through September 1990 are approximately $107 million. It is
estimated that this represents a 70% completion of all noncoal sites on a cost basis.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Wyoming reports no data. They expect all non-coal priority
sites will be reclaimed by the Wyoming AML program by 1995.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: It is estimated that reclamation of all remaining
noncoal abandoned sites in Wyoming would cost approximately $45 million.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: Inventory confidence levels are very high, due to
extensive baseline inventory work started in 1980 and continued to date. This has been
facilitated by Wyoming's early enabling legislation (1969) regulating mining operations and
directing reclamation policy.

Interstate Coalition on Mine Waste States
Participating State: Alabama
Representing Agency: Department of Industrial Relations
Agency Contact: Tom Ventress (205) 242-5357
Address: 649 Monroe Street, Montgomery, AL 36130
PRIMARY MINERAf-S MINED: Iron ore production dates to 1880. In the early 1900's, sand,
gravel and clays were produced in modest quantities, increasing as the demand for
construction materials rose. Limestone and marble quarries were established in the 1920's.
Most of the mining is accomplished using surface mining or open quarry methods. Iron ore
was mined via underground methods leaving hundreds of open mine portals and shafts.
Processing methods include crushing, cleaning and heating.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Alabama Surface Mining Act of 1969- To be considered
inactive or abandoned, a pit must have been idle (without a surface mining permit) for at
least one year with no apparent attempts at reclamation and no indication that reclamation
will take place.
1969 provides for the forfeiture of an operator's reclamation bond for failure to reclaim a
site. Forfeited bonds are deposited into the Surface Mining Reclamation Fund. However, the
$150 per acre bond amount is not enough to accomplish any meaningful degree of LAM
reclamation. Hence, no reclamation of LAM sites has been initiated using forfeited bond
moneys to date.
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Nearly 100,000 acres would be considered inactive and/or
abandoned. Documented total acreage is 15,494 acres. Over 2,000 permitted acres are
abandoned each year, based on recent trends.
LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total cost estimates to reclaim IAM sites is
$54,229,000. Average cost to reclaim an abandoned nonfuel surface mine is estimated to be
$3500 per disturbed acre.

Representing Agency: Department of Pollution Control and Ecology
Agency Contact: Floyd Durham (501) 562-6533
Address: P.O. Box 8913, Little Rock, AR 72219-8913
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Commercial mining began in the mid 1800's and minerals
mined include antimony, iron, manganese, mercury, nickel, silver, zinc, lead, asphalt,
phosphate, bauxite, barite, clay, gypsum, sand, gravel, limestone, nepheline, syenite,
novaculite, quartz, silica sand, slate, soapstone and vanadium. Early mining was done
underground and has shifted to primarily surface techniques today, usually open cut mining.
Processing methods include crushing and/or sizing with some minerals such as bauxite and
barite requiring the use of roasting and chemical and/or electrolytic processing.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Arkansas Open Cut Land Reclamation Act of 1971. LAMs are
defined as properties where there is no continuing reclamation responsibility by the owner or
claimant/lessee to remediate the impact of past noncoal mining.
enacted to provide for the reclamation of 1AM sites and hence no formal program for LAM
reclamation exists.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total acreage affected under the ''disturbed land" category is
5,129. This is a conservative estimate and does not account for acreage associated with
highwalls, hazardous structures, mine entrances or mine air shafts.
1AM REMf-piATTON COST ESTIMATE: The total cost estimate to reclaim LAM sites is
$145,440,585. These cost estimates are based on current active reclamation costs in the
state, estimates provided by the state of Montana for similar remediation efforts and best
professional judgement. Costs are broken down as follows: Highwalls • $36,000/miie;
Streams - $750,000/ mile; Hazardous Structures - $3,000/ structure; Disturbed Lands -
$650/acre; Mine Dumps - $1.30/yard; Mine Openings - $15,000/entrance; Air Shafts -

Participating State: Illinois
Representing Agency: Department of Mines and Minerals
Agency Contact: Paul Ehret (217) 782-4970
Address: P.O. Box 10197, Springfield, IL 62791-0197
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Minerals produced in the state beginning in the late 1700's
include: fluorspar, sand, gravel, limestone, lead, zinc, peat, clay, shale, silica, tripoli and
ganister. Both underground and surface mining methods have been used. Current
processing methods include crushing, washing of limestones, sands and clays, and
preparation of fluorspar and associated minerals (lead, zinc). Fluorspar, lead and zinc
production is very small compared to historic production.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive and abandoned mines are defined.as areas where
there is no reclamation responsibility to the Illinois Department of Mines and Minerals.
Reclamation Council has recently begun work on a limited number of noncoal sites using
Title IV funds under SMCRA, The state is authorized to spend a maximum of two per cent
($200,000 per year) of their annual budget on noncoal sites where extreme hazards are
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Disturbed acres associated with mine dumps and disturbed
land amount to 35,443 acres. This does not include acreage associated with highwalls
(1,074 miles), mine openings, subsidence and hazardous structures-much of which acreage is
unknown in terms of quantity.
1AM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: The total estimated cost of 1AM remediation is
$113,000,000. Costs are estimated in part on Title rv (SMCRA) current expenditures for
reclamation of abandoned coal mines.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE LEVEL: The site locations for mines and mine openings is
presumed to be 50°/o accurate. Acreage is presumed to be 50% accurate. Accuracy of on site
conditions, e.g., hazardous structures, subsidence, hazardous highwalls, is unknown.

Participating State: Indiana
Representing Agency: Department of Narural Resources, Bureau of Mine Reclamation
Agency Contact: Michael Long (317) 232-4020
Address: 402 W, Washington St., Executive Office C-256, Indianapolis, IN
PRIMARY mtnf.rai.£ MINED: Noncoal mining consists of sand, gravel, limestone (crushed
and dimension), peat, marl, gypsum, clay, shale and sandstone. Surface mining is the
predominant method of extraction. Processing methods involve crushing and sizing.
STATE RFn^MATIQN LAWS: In 1986, the Indiana General Assembly enacted the Mineral
Extraction Mine Reclamation Program. The program was administered by the Division of
Reclamation, Indiana Department of Natural Resources. This program was an attempt to
regulate the sand, gravel, and limestone industries. The program was repealed the following
Inactive/abandoned mines have been identified as properties where there is no continuing
reclamation responsibilities by the owner or any individual to remediate the impact of past
non-coal mining. Sites reported in the database and summary are not covered by any permit,
reclamation bond or state and federal licenses.
regulations which address LAMs.
[AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: A total of 1,268 IAM sites have been identified in Indiana's
database resulting from a fairly comprehensive inventory effort in 1986.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total LAM remediation costs are estimated to be
$450,244,000 and are based on experience under the Indiana Abandoned Mine Land
Program for coaL Reclamation costs are broken down as follows: Disturbed Land -
$3,000/acre; Highwalls - $50,000/mile; Mine Dumps ¦ $20,000/acre; Mine Openings -
$800/opening; Hazardous Structures - $3,000/stnicture.

Participating State: Iowa
Representing Agency: Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship
Agency Contact: Kenneth Tow (515)281-6147
Address: Wallace Building, Des Moines, Iowa 50318
PRIMARY MINFRAI-S MINED: Mining operations for non-fuel minerals in Iowa include some
1,100 to 1,200 active sites. Materials produced include limestone, sand and gravel, clay, and
gypsum. The bulk of the sites are either limestone quarries or sand and gravel pits. Most
operations are surface mines or open quarries. Active sites once developed, remain
serviceable and productive for a number of years.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Iowa's current reclamation statute, Iowa Code Chapter 83A,
was first enacted in 1968. It has since been amended in 1973 and 1985. The Division also
has administrative rules for administration of its policies pursuant to 83A (Iowa
Administrative Code 27-60).
are not a significant problem in the state. The 1968 law encompassed most sites that were
operating and has caused some reclamation to be affected on most sites prior to their release.
While the Iowa law allows the operator to leave impoundments, pit floors, haul roads, and
highwalls, provided that overburden piles are graded and vegetated, LAM sites-including
those released by the Division since 1968-do not constitute significant environmental
problems either locally or on a state-wide basis. Neither is the need for reclamation of those
sites a significant issue either locally or state-wide.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Iowa does not have accurate data on LAM acreage, either
inactive or abandoned.
LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: We would estimate remediation costs for the purpose
of eliminating known non-fuel mine wastes to essentially be negligible.

Participating State: Louisiana
Representing Agency: Department of Natural Resources, Injection and Mining Division
Agency Contact: Tony Duplechin (504) 342-5540
Address: P.O. Box 94275, Baton Rouge, LA 70804-9275
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Noncoal mining activities include the recovery of iron ore,-
sand, gravel, bentonite clay, gypsum, sandstone and various other mineral resources. The
primary mining method has been surface extraction.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Louisiana currently has no laws or regulations governing
reclamation of noncoal minerals.
govern remediation of LAM sites, although consideration is being given to a noncoal mining
act in 1991. No funds have been available for remediation of IAM sites.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total affected acreage for existing IAM sites is 81,197 acres
encompassing some 947 sites. An additional 50,525 acres have been disturbed on a total of
299 active sites and could increase the total inventory acreage.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Of the 947 IAM sites, 301 are considered to be in
serious need of reclamation and would require an average of $2,500 per acre for reclamation
to be accomplished. The 559 sites comprising the "minimal to no reclamation needed"
category would require an average of $1,500 per acre. Total cost estimates for reclamation
of all sites identified in the inventory is approximately $114,450,980. Louisiana bases its
estimates on best professional judgement given actual reclamation costs associated with
active noncoal sites.

Participating State: Maine
Representing Agency: Department of Environmental Protection
Agency Contact: Mary James (207) 289-7688
Address: Stare House Station 17, Augusta, ME 04333
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Early mining operations (1850 - 1900) included iron ore,
gold, silver, copper, zinc and lead. Construction ores include sand and gravel, cement,
dimension and crushed stone. Gem stones have also been mined extensively. The primary
forms of mining have been surface and quarrying.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Site Location and Development Act of 1970. Regulations for
mining are currently being developed.
for abandoned/inactive mines.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Records available to the state were such that the development
of even a cursory inventory was extremely difficult. Field investigation is needed to confirm
and, in some cases, to locate 1AM sites that have been tentatively identified. From the
existing data, it is known that there are 705 mine openings, 163 mine dumps and 1.4 miles
of polluted water associated with (AM's. It is likely that additional field analysis will result in
a significant increase in the number of IAM sites.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Unavailable at this rime.

Participating State: Maryland
Representing Agency: Water Resources Administration
Agency Contact: Ed Larrimore (301) 974-3874
Address: Tawes State Office Building, Annapolis, MD 21401
PRIMARY M1NFRA1-S MINED: Minerals produced in the state have included iron ore,
chromium, gold, copper, stone, clays, sand and gravel, and other non-metallic minerals.
Mining methods included placer, surface and underground.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: An abandoned surface mine is defined as a site mined and
unreclaimed prior to January 1, 1977.
establishes a Surface Mined Land Reclamation Fund. The fees collected under the Fund's
provisions are used to reclaim pre-law surface mines. Since 1988, the state has spent over
$11,015,783 to reclaim 303 acres of land affected by pre-law and bond forfeiture surface
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: The state has identified, inspected, ranked and prepared a
statewide inventory of approximately 195 pre-law sites ranging in size from one-half to over
350 acres in size. Approximate numbers include the following: 638 acres of sand and gravel
LAM'S; 180 acres of abandoned quarries; 70,675 linear feet of highwalls exceeding 15 feet;
and 165,850 tons of sediment loads for all sites.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total remediation costs are estimated at $25 million.
The cost estimates are based upon actual costs incurred by the state of Maryland in its non-
fuel abandoned mine program. The average cost in Maryland at non-stone sites is
approximately $5,000 per acre. Revegetation alone will cost between $1,500 and $2,000 per
acre. Creative reclamation such as non-tidal wetland creation or reforestation could easily
approach $10,000 per acre. This amount does not include engineering or survey costs which
will run approximately $1,000 per acre for an average site presenting no significant problems
such as major highwalls or waste product storage.

Participatiiig State: Mississippi
Representing Agency: Department of Environmental Quality, Bureau of Geology
Agency Contact: William H. Moore (601) 961-5500
Address: P.O. Box 5348, Jackson, MS 39296-5348 *
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Prior to the Civil War, lignite and sandstone were mined in
small amounts on a localized scale. Mining of sand and gravel for road construction began
around 1900. The first cement plant was established in 1950. Mining and crushing of
limestone and chalk for agricultural purposes began in 1945 and continues today. Some iron
ore was mined up until 1960, with little or no impact on the environment although no
reclamation was done. Small amounts of clay have been mined prior to and after 1900.
Brick plants began production around 1900. From 1939 to the present bentonite has been
mined and ball clay has been mined since 1952. Some of the clay pits operated by the
bentonite companies were reclaimed but many have been only naturally reclaimed. The only
underground mine in the state is a small silica mine in the northeast corner which was
abandoned shortly after World War I.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Prior to 1977 there were no laws regulating mining unless
some public nuisance had been created or if the air and water were polluted. Since passage
of the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act of 1977, Mississippi Code, 1972, Section 33-7-1
et seq., permits are required for the mining of sand, gravel, limestone, fill material and all
other materials and reclamation of mined lands requiring a permit has been in force. The
reclamation is affected by the posting of an appropriate per acre bond for mined acres. The
bond is from $500 per acre to $2,500 per acre depending on site conditions. Bond is usually
set at $500 per acre. The operator is responsible for the reclamation unless the bond is
forfeited, at which time the state would use the bond to effect reclamation.
that have been formally reclaimed, and 133,130 have been naturally reclaimed (all lands not
formally reclaimed are considered to be naturally reclaimed in lands mined prior to April 15,
1978, with a few exceptions). There has been no reclamation of exempt mined land or
mined land existing prior to April 15, 1978, the date the act went into effect. Due to rapid
affects of erosion and natural revegetation, it would probably not be feasible to reclaim much
of the abandoned mined land.
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total affected IAM acreage that has not been formally or
naturally reclaimed is 23,660 acres.

LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Based on an average, actual reclamation cost of
$1,000 per acre, total remediation costs are estimated to be $23,660,000.

Participating State: New York
Representing Agency: Department of Environmental Conservation, Division of Mineral
Agency Contact: Steven M. Porter, (518)457-0100
Address: 50 Wolf Road, Room 202, Albany, New York 12233-6500
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Leading mineral commodities in terms of value are crushed
stone, salt, cement, sand and gravel, zinc and wollastonite. Other minerals mined include
clay, garnet, gypsum, peat, lead, silver and talc. The majority of mining is accomplished
using surface mining or open quarry methods. Processing methods include crushing,
screening, washing, gravity separation (wollastonite) and other chemical methods associated
with the processing of lead and zinc.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Mined Land Reclamation Law of 1975, amended 1991. It is
the policy of the State of New York to foster and encourage the development of domestic
mineral resources and reserves necessary to assure satisfaction of economic needs compatible
with sound environmental management practices. The legislature further declares it to be
the policy of the state to provide for the wise and efficient uses of the resources available for
mining and to provide, in conjunction with such mining operations, for reclamation of
affected lands.
Abandoned as used in this title, means the cessation of mining and reclamation activities on
land affected by mining without prior notification to the department of such cessation of
activities or without describing such cessation in a Mined Land Use Plan approved by the
Department, and after opportunity to be heard.
Reclamation Law provides for the forfeiture of an operator's reclamation bond for failure to
reclaim a site. At the present time, no special account exists for this purpose. The majority
of LAM's would have been before 1975. To date, no reclamation of pre-law (1975)
abandoned lands has been accomplished.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Not yet available as total figure... An inventory of pre-1975
mines is now being tabulated and summarized. Currently, there are approximately 30,040
acres of land affected by mining under permit in New York State. Total value of reclamation
financial security on record is $48,121,801.05.


Participating State: North Carolina
Representing Agency; Department of Environment, Health and Natural Resources, Division
of Land Resources
Agency Contact: Charles Gardner (919) 733-3833
Address: P.O. Box 27687, Raleigh, NC 27611-7687
PRIMARY MTNf.pAT .S MINED: Metallic ores mined in the past have included iron, copper,
lead, zinc, tungsten and precious metals. Other mineral commodities include clay (common
and kaolin), feldspar, gemstones, lithium minerals, mica, olivine, peat, phosphate rock,
pyrophyllite, sand and gravel and stone (crushed and dimension). The three mining methods
employed in the state have been underground, surface and placer mining. Processing
methods include crushing, gravity separation, mercury amalgamation, cyanidation and
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: North Carolina Mining Act of 1971. Inactive and abandoned
mines are considered to be those sites where there is no continuing reclamation responsibility
by an owner or operator.
funding program for reclamation of 1AM sites. Between 1980 and 1985, about 590 acres of
highly erosive materials from abandoned mines and tailings disposal sites were successfully
reclaimed under a TVA initiative. Total costs amounted to $487,000 at an average cost of
S825 per acre.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total estimated LAM acreage is 16,700 acres.
LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Estimated cost of remediation is $22,580,800. Costs
are based on a study conducted by the North Carolina Mining Commission in 1987 in which
estimated reclamation costs per acre were established for several categories of mining, as
follows: $l,500/acre for metallic ore mines; $l,200/acre for construction ore mines; and
$l,850/acre for industrial ore mines.

Participating State: Ohio
Representing Agency: Department of Natural Resources, Division of Reclamation
Agency Contact: Shari Zook (614) 265-6675
Address: 1855 Fountain Square Court, Bldg. H, Columbus, OH 43224
PRIMARY MTNFRAf-S MINED: Minerals produced have included flint, clay, salt, iron ore,
limestone, sandstone, shale, gypsum, silica, sand and gravel. The three mining methods
include underground, surface and dredging.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Inactive mines are defined as those areas affected by mining
which are located adjacent to active mines that have not been reclaimed or would require
some additional work to be returned to a useable land form. Abandoned mine lands are
lands where mining has occurred, reclamation has not been completed, and where there is no
continuing reclamation responsibility by an owner or operator. Both types of sites generally
include disturbances created prior to 1975 when the Ohio Surface Mine Law was adopted.
IAM problem. Some sites contain hazardous wastes (brought to the site by another party)
and will be covered under CERCLA. Another $100,000 has been spent by the state on four
sites since 1975 using bond forfeiture funds.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total estimates at this point in time given a rather incomplete
inventory are 6,018 acres.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Estimates for remediation are in the range of $48
million using cost per acre figures developed by the coal AML program.

Participating State: Oklahoma
Representing Agency: Oklahoma Conservation Commission
Agency Contact: Michael Kastl (405) 521-2384
Address: 2800 N. Lincoln, Suite 160, Oklahoma City, OK 73105
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Minerals extracted have included lead, zinc, salt, cadmium,
copper, silver, gold, gypsum, limestone, bentonire, tripoli, silica, dolomite, feldspar, asphalt,
sand, gravel, clay, granite and quarry stone. Mining methods include surface and
underground. Processing methods include crushing, heating (ltilns) and electrolytic refining.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Mining Lands Reclamation Act of 1971. Inactive and aban-
doned mines are those sites which are not undergoing reclamation by an owner or operator,
as well as those sites which may be inadequately reclaimed under existing laws.
examples of noncoal reclamation in the state, most as a result of bond forfeitures.
1AM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Total estimates are in the range of 26,453 acres.
1AM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Costs per acre to reclaim noncoal sites are expected
to average $8,000 - 10,000 per acre. Total estimated cost is 186,857,000. Costs are based
on experience with the Oklahoma AML Program for coal and are broken down as follows:
Mine Dumps - $8,000/acre; Disturbed Land - $2,000/acre; Highwalls - $50,000/mile; Mine
Openings - $1,000/opening; Subsidence - $2,000/acre.

Participating State: Pennsylvania
Representing Agency: Department of Environmental Resources, Bureau of Mining and
Agency Contact: Ernest F. Giovannitti (717) 787-5103
Address: P.O. Box 2357, Harrisburg, PA 17105-2357
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Minerals produced in the Commonwealth, beginning as early
as 1692, include iron ore, limestone, copper, zinc, chromium, lead, silver, gold, nickel,
cadmium, molybdenum, dolomite, clay, shale, sandstone and sand and gravel. Both surface
and underground mining methods have been used as well as dredging. Processing methods
included crushing and heating.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Noncoal Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act
of 1972. Inactive/abandoned noncoal mines are defined as mines where mining was
completed prior to the regulation of such mining under the above Act (January 1, 1972). -
reclamation that has occurred has been on bond forfeiture sites, and then on only five occa-
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: The data available on IAM sites in Pennsylvania contains no
listing for acres in most cases. Thus, the state has listed IAM sites by number of sites rather
than by acreage. The total number of sites is estimated at 1,309. Using data available from
the Soil Conservation Service, acreage is estimated at 31,500.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Noncoal reclamation is expected to cost
approximately $7,000 per acre based on the average cost for reclaiming abandoned coal sites
in the state. Total costs would therefore be in the range of $220,500,000.

Participating State: Texas
Representing Agency: Railroad Commission of Texas, Surface Mining and Reclamation
Agency Contact: Melvin Hodgkiss (512) 463-6901
Address: P.O. Drawer 12967, Capitol Station, Austin, TX 78711-2967
PRIMARY MINERALS MINED: Minerals extracted in Texas have included: copper, silver,
lead, zinc, tin, tungsten, mercury, limestone, granite, marble, sandstone, clay, sand and
gravel, fluorspar, talc, iron ore, sulfur, barite, gypsum, gold, gem stones, manganese,
molybdenum, rhyolite, serpentine, shell, celesrite, graphite and mica. Both underground and
surface mining techniques have been used. Processing techniques have included smelting,
milling, and crushing.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Texas Surface Mining and Reclamation Act of 1975. With
the exception of uranium and limited iron ore mining, there is no current regulation of
noncoal mining activities in Texas.
access AML funds under SMCRA for some noncoal reclamation work. Seven sites have been
reclaimed since 1983. Additional noncoal work is anticipated using SMCRA AML funds
beginning in 1991.
IAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: The state is in the process of completing a statewide inventory
of noncoal LAM sites. To date some 20,604 sites have been identified. Total acres are
estimated at 163,904.
IAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total estimated remediation costs are
$1,026,944,000. Cost estimates were based on coal, uranium, mercury and tin abandoned
mine reclamation projects completed by the Texas AML program. Examples are S6,500/acre
for disturbed lands and $15,000/opening for mine openings.

Participating State: Virginia
Representing Agency: Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy
Agency Contact: William Roller (804) 239-0602
Address: P.O. Box 4499, Lynchburg, VA 24502
PRIMARY MlNn?pAl.S MINED: Minerals extracted include iron ore, gold, zinc, copper, lead,
silver, manganese, arsenic, barite, titanium, pyrite, sand and gravel, granite, limestone, gneiss,
sandstone, crushed and dimension stone, gypsum and clay.
STATE RECLAMATION LAWS: Orphaned lands are those areas disturbed by the mining of
all minerals, except coal, which were not required by law to be reclaimed or have not been
reclaimed and for which there are no reclamation responsibilities.
noncoal orphaned land reclamation program, funds for which are obtained from interest
monies earned from a state managed industry self-bonding program. There have been 50
orphaned land projects completed, encompassing 392 acres at a cost of $1,104,910. Average
cost of reclamation has been $2,812 per acre.
LAM INVENTORY ACREAGE: Reports used for construction of this inventory included
information on "location" only for 1,418 of the 2,285 mine sites. For reported acreage, a
total estimate of 22,509 acres is applicable.
LAM REMEDIATION COST ESTIMATE: Total cost estimate is $123,010,000 for polluted
water; revegetation of mine dumps, pits and disturbed acreage; highwalls; mine openings
and hazardous structures. Cost estimates are based on guidelines for estimating coal AML
reclamation costs from the AML Inventory Update Manual, Office of Surface Mining. The
cost estimates-are detailed as follows: Polluted Water - $10,000/occurrence; Mine Dumps
and Disturbed Areas - $5,000/acre; Highwalls - $5.00 per HLP (height, length, product);
Mine Openings - $5,000/opening; and Hazardous Structures • $5,000/strucrure.
INVENTORY CONFIDENCE IEVET.; The accuracy of the data given on the number of shafts
is 90% accurate due to the assumptions made. All the other information such as polluted
waters, etc. is not at all accurate because of the lack of adequate field data. The number of
mine sites which fit into the definition of an orphaned mine under Virginia's program is
presumed to be 90% accurate.


Policy Options
Organization of Discussion 	 60
Compulsory Options
CERCLA Abatement Actions	 		66
CERCLA Nat. Resource Damage Claims		69
State Superfund Laws 			74
State General Mining Laws 		74
State Tort Law		75
Negligence		76
Trespass 		77
Nuisance		78
Strict Liability 		79
Federal Common Law			80
NPDES Permits		81
Underground Injection Control		83
RCRA Corrective Action		84
RCRA Imminent Hazard and Citizen Suit Provisions	87
Clean Air Act 		89
Reclamation Requirements on Federal Land		90
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act ....	91
Incentives/Cooperative Programs
Remining Incentives 	 93
CERCLA Liability Exemptions	 94
Clean Water Act Variances 	 95
Bonding Incentives 	 96
Tax Incentives for Reprocessing	 98
Preferential Purchasing of Remined Minerals 98
Permitting Priority/Permitting Assistance . 99
Reclamation to Satisfy Civil Penalties	 100
Clean Water Act Demonstration Projects	 101
State Substitution Clauses	 104

Government-Funded Options
SMCRA		110
State Abandoned Mine Land Laws 		113
State Superfund Laws		115
Clean Water Act Demonstration Projects		115
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation
Control Act 		116
New Government-Funded IAM Program 		117
Existing Funds to Finance a
Federal IAM Program . . 		118
N'ew Taxes/Fees ro Finance a Federal [AM
Program 		119
Exemption of Re miring from IAM Tax 		128

Inactive and abandoned noncoal mines (IAMs) present environmental, safety and
health problems throughout the country. No single program has provided an all-
encompassing solution to these problems. However, dozens of programs at the federal and
state level have been used in the past, or suggested for future use, to address various aspects
of IAMs.
The Western Interstate Energy Board, under a cooperative agreement with the
Western Governors' Association, has prepared this preliminary scoping report to describe a
broad range of options for remediation0 of problems associated with IAMs. The purpose of
this report is to begin the necessary dialogue on approaches to remediating IAMs. This
report is not intended to reach a conclusion on whether these options, individually or as a
group, are sufficient or appropriate to address all of the nation's IAM problems, and is not an
endorsement by governors of any specific policy option.
Dozens of policy options exist or have been proposed which could contribute to the
remediation of environmental, health and safety problems at inactive or abandoned noncoal
mines (LAMs). The policy options can be divided into three categories7:
1)	Compulsory - i.e., legally requiring some parry to conduct and/or fund
remediation (e.g., compelling a responsible party to conduct remedial action
under Superfund, obtaining a court injunction requiring the cleanup of a
public nuisance, requiring cleanup of acid mine discharges from IAM as pan
of a site-wide water permit, requiring reclamation under state law such as adit
or shaft closure in Arizona);
2)	Incentives/Cooperative - i.e., encouraging, but not requiring, some party to
conduct remediation (e.g., remining incentives); or
3)	Government - i.e., remediation accomplished by a state or federal agency
(e.g., using SMCRA or state abandoned mine land funds, using Clean Water
Act demonstration funds).
5 Remediation" is used in the broadest sense to include all actions which produce an improvement in siie conditions from a
health, safety or environmental perspective. It does not necessarily mean completely addressing all problems at an 1AM site.
Complete remediauon of a particular IAM site may require the use of two or more options.
Some options fit into more Lhan one category, depending on how they are aoplied (e.g., CERCLA can be used to compel
a responsible party to clean up a site, or it can be used to fund government cleanup projecu). In this case, the different uses of the
option are discussed under each appropriate category.

To dare, no single existing oprion has been used extensively to address a large portion
of lAMs. Only a few of the existing options (e.g., RCRA corrective action and imminent
hazard, Clean Water Act demonstrations, storm water runoff rules) have the potential to
reach a large number of iAMs. New options, such as a new 1AM fund, also have the
potential of reaching a large number of sites.
There are also a number of existing and potential options which can be effective in
addressing a smaller universe of IAM problems. To be effective, however, fine tuning of
existing laws and practices may be needed. For example, remining may be an effective
option to address IAMs associated with valuable deposits; however, CERCLA liability under
current law may dissuade parties from renuiung.
Limitations in the use of specific options Include:
~	The narrow focus of the option;
~	The low priority of IAMs relative to other problems addressed by the option;
» Lack of a demonstrated crack record;
~	Use of the option will result in only partial remediation;
~	Low funding levels;
~	Legal and administrative difficulties in using the oprion;
~	Problems of fairness; and
~	Obstacles created by other policy options.
In many cases, the focus of a policy option is too narrow to address a large number of
IAMs. The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act has a very narrow focus --
remediation of inactive uranium mill tailings sites. The Surface Mining Control and
Reclamation Act is used to address some IAM problems. However, because SMCRA's focus is
on coal mines, use of SMCRA funds to address noncoal IAM problems is severely limited.
Most states are able to address only safety problems (e.g., open mine shafts) on IAMs, but
not environmental problems (e.g., water pollution from acid mine drainage) with SMCRA
funds. Additionally, SMCRA funds are nor available to noncoal producing states.
The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act ,
('Superfund") is an example of a very broad program within which IAMs frequently have a
lower priority than other hazards. Superfund provides for remedial action, by the
government or responsible parties, related to releases of hundreds of hazardous substances
from many types of facilities. Of the 1200 sites on the Superfund National Priorities List,
only 47 are mining sites. However, many of the mining and smelting sites are among the
largest in area on the NPL.
Some policy options, have the potential for addressing a large number of IAMs, but
there is no demonstrated track record. Some policy options are new and untested, or are at
the proposal stage. For example, EPA recently adopted regulations regarding Clean Water
Act permits for stormwater runoff from mining operations. No permit applications have been
processed yet, and there are significant uncertainties about how the program will be

implemented. Another example is the imminent hazard authority under the Resource
Conservation and Recovery Act, which has the potential for addressing environmental
problems at many LAMs -- any IAM which contains solid or hazardous waste which may
present an imminent and substantial endangerment to health or the environment. Imminent
hazard suits can be filed by the Environmental Protection Agency or any "citizen" (including
a state). No suits, however, have been filed against an LAM; therefore, the ultimate
effectiveness of this option cannot be evaluated.
Options at the proposal stage include developing new funding sources to address
IAMs and giving mine operators financial and/or regulatory incentives to remine IAMs.
Some policy options address only pan of a problem at an 1AM. For example, the
Clean Air Act will only address airborne emissions.
In other cases, low funding levels limit the number of IAMs a policy option can
address. For example, a top priority for the Clean Water Act demonstration grant program is
controlling nonpoint source pollution problems, including those from mining activities.
Congressional appropriations have fallen far short of authorizations, and states have been
unable to fund all of the proposed projects. State abandoned mine programs have also been
hampered in some cases by insufficient funding.
Legal and administrative difficulties are deterrents to the use of a number of options.
Many of the compulsory options, such as natural resource damage suits authorized under
Superfund, have proven to be expensive and protracted. Implementation of the new EPA
stormwater runoff rules may involve extensive title searches of inactive mining claims which
have been handed down through generations and subsequent litigation to force compliance
by persons who ultimately may have limited resources. The net effect may be little
improvement on the ground.
Several of the options, particularly the compulsory options, raise questions of fairness.
especially as they apply to current landowners who did not create the IAM. Superfund
allows an "innocent landowner" defense, but the landowner must have been unaware of the
IAM problem, not merely uninvolved in creating or contributing to the problem. The nature
of the mining industry creates another fairness issue. Mining properties are often passed
down as "family heirlooms" by people who never actively develop a mine. Many of the
options treat these people the same as a large mining company that has conducted large-
scale operations. It may be unfair, or at least unpopular, to apply the full range of options to
these "family heirloom" owners.
The existence of Superfund often has been an obstacle to implementing the other
policy options. States, local governments, adjoining landowners and mining companies have
been reluctant to partially clean someone else's site under one of the other options out of
fear that they will later be required to finance a more thorough cleanup under Superfund.
Performing remedial action makes these entities site "operators," who will then be
"responsible parties" under Superfund - responsible for all past activities and future releases

at the sire. Mining companies have cited Superfund liability as the most significant obstacle
to remining a site - an activity which could produce environmental benefits. At least one
state has put its Clean Water Act demonstration program on hold because of Superfund
liability concerns. Another state has restricted its noncoal reclamation under SMCRA.
SN1CRA and Superfund provide some protection to states (and possibly to their contractors)
from this type of liability. However, the extent of liability a state or private party faces
depends more on which federal or state program funded the reclamation project than on the
type of reclamation conducted, the care/skill with which it wrs conducted, or the
environmental results.
The following table provides a very rough guide to the impediments to the
widespread use of the various policy options to deal with IAMs.


I.AM s
i.AMs are
Li ale
Fear of

CERCLA Abatement


CERCLA Natural
Resource Damage

t *

State Superfund


State General
Mining Laws

• •

State Ton Law



Federal Common

• •

N'PDES Permit


t »

Injection Control
• •

• •

RCRA Corrective

• •

« •

RCRA Imminent


» *

Clean Air Act

» t

Recla.T.adon on
Federal Land
* <
* *

1 #
• *



lAMs are
Fear of

Remining Incentives

« •
• •

• V

« *
Reclamation in Leu
of Penalties


• •

• •
State Substitution

• •


• >
• *



• *

• >

State Abandoned
Mine Programs


State Superfund



• *

» «
Uranium Mill
» *

New Government-
Funded [AM

• »

* Moderate Impediment
•• Severe Impediment
P Possible impediment, depending on which aspects of the option are implemented

Given the wide diversity in policy options, it is important to understand how each
option works. In this scoping of the policy options -- existing and proposed - the following
rypes of issues have been used to help illustrate the advantages and disadvantages of the
» Effectiveness -- How likely is it that the option could be used to accomplish
remediation? What types of remediation issues (e.g., water quality, air
emissions, open shafts) could it address? What features limit the effectiveness
of the option?
~	Costs -- Who pays for remediation7 How expensive is the option to
implement? Are funds available to implement the option? Cost discussion
includes technical costs and administrative costs.
~	Fairness - Under what circumstances is the option fair - e.g., "innocent
landowners," source of funds vs. use of funds?
" ~ Legal issues -- Would use of the option expose the person reclaiming the site
to liability under another starute (e.g., CERCLA)? Are the courts inclined to
accept the use of the option in reclaiming abandoned mines? Are there any
unresolved issues regarding how the option is applied?
~	History -- Has the option been used in the past? How successful was it?
What problems were encountered? Some case spjdies are incorporated into
the policy options section of this report.
~	Time -- How much time would be needed to put the option in place? Once
the option is in place, how time-consuming would each remediation project
~	Interactions with other laws -- How does the option relate to other laws?
Does the option create impediments to using any of the other options (e.g.,
CERCLA liability may be an impediment to SMCRA reclamation)?
~	Improvements -- What changes in federal or state law (statutes or regulations)
would be necessary or desirable to implement this option successfully for
remediation of !AMs?

This section discusses options where the government requires someone (e.g.,
responsible party, landowner) to conduct and/or fund remediation activities. Some options
involve court proceedings, while others can be pursued through administrative orders. State
laws (Clean Air, Clean Water) which parallel the federal law are not specifically discussed.
CERCLA Abatement Actions:
Under the Comprehensive
Environmental Response, Compensation and
Liability Act,8 a responsible party can be
required to clean up a hazardous waste site
or to pay for cleanup performed by EPA, the
states or a private party. Section 1065
authorizes the Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA)10 to compel (in court or
through administrative orders) responsible
parties to abate an imminent and
substantial endangerment to the public
health and environment from a release or
threatened release of a hazardous substance
and to take such other actions "as the
public interest and the equities of the case
may require." If EPA is not enforcing its
orders against the responsible party, any
person may bring a citizen suit to compel
the responsible party to comply.11 EPA,
the states, tribes, or (in some cases) a
private party can also take the response
action and sue the responsible parties for
reimbursement under Section 107.
"Responsible party" under Section
107 is defined broadly to include 1) current
owners or operators, 2) persons who owned
the facility at the time of disposal of
The McLaren Mil! tailings near Cooke City,
Montana, continuously discharge acid mine
drainage into Soda Butte Creek just
upstream of Yellowstone National Park. In
addition, the tailings pile is unstable and
threatens a catastrophic release which could
destroy the acquanc and riparian resources
in Yellowstone. An attempt in the early
1970's to reclaim the 250,000 cubic yard
tailings pile failed to correct the problem. In
this case, removing the tailing from the
stream channel would basically resolve the
problem. In the 1980's numerous agencies
tried unsuccessfully to get the problem
resolved or the tailings removed. Finally in
1989, at the request of the National Park
Service, the EPA initiated a "time critical
removal action" under CERCLA §106 to
abate the threatened release of hazardous
substances from the site. Action was taken
to prevent washout of the pile, and two
administrative orders were issued to stabilize
and/or remove the tailings. Work under the
first administrative order has been completed
and work under the second order is pending
for this season. This is believed to be the
first case to utilize this CERCLA authority to
clean up an AML site.
9 42 U S C. 9| 9601 etseq., known as CERCLA or Superfund.
' 42 U.S.C. « 9606.
0 States generally do not have the authority to force responsible parties to conduct remedial actions - either through state
administrative orders or through court-issued injunctions. 735 F. 2d 368 (D. Colo. 1990).
11	42 U.S.C. J 9659.
12	42 U.S.C. i 9607.

hazardous substances, 3) persons who arranged for the transport, treatment or disposal of
v hazardous substances (including generators), and 4) persons who transported hazardous
substances to the facility (if they selected the facility). EPA beiieves that it can require an
even broader group to perform Section 106 abatement actions. Responsible parties are
jointly and severally liable (i.e., any one party can be held responsible for the entire cost of
remedial action, although this person is free to sue the other responsible parties for
a contribution to the response costs under federal and state tort law).
EPA maintains a computerized list of ail hazardous substance sites called the
Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation & Liability Information System
(CERCLIS). The CERCLIS listing does not necessarily mean that the site presents an
environmental or public health hazard. Sites are entered into CERCLIS as EPA becomes
aware of them. Evenrually, as each site is srudied, it is either added to the National Priorities
List (NPL) or is marked "No Further Response Action Planned" (NFRAP). This means that
EPA will not take any further steps unless it receives additional information which indicates a
need for response. 3 Approximately 50 percent of the sites in CERCLIS are marked NFRAP
at the first step -- the preliminary assessment. Most cf the remaining sites are eliminated
because their Hazard Ranking Scores are too low to qualify for the NPL. Only 2-7 percent of
the sites in CERCLIS become NPL sites. CERCLIS contains over 30,000 sites, of which
approximately 1,200 are on the NPL.U .As of August 1991, the NPL contained 48 mining
sites15; CERCLIS contains an additional 227 mining sites that are not on the NPL.16
Effectiveness Listing on the NPL is nai required in order to compel abatement
actions under Section 106 or to obtain reimbursement from responsible
parties under Section 107. However, as a practical matter, EPA focuses
its enforcement actions on NPL sites.17 Therefore, this option
probably would be useful only for the ^8 IAM sites currently on the
NPL and a Limited number of IAM sites that may be added to the NPL
in the furure. A new hazard ranking system being developed by EPA is
unlikely to expand the applicability of Section 106 to a significant
number of additional IAM sites. 8
CERCLA is directed at environmental problems. Some IAM safety
problems could be addressed indirectly -- e.g., sealing an open mine
shaft to prevent water infiltration which is causing acid mine drainage.
13 40 C.F R § 300 5
'* Office of Technology Assessment, Coming Clean: Superfund Problems Can Be Solved,' QTA-ITE-433 (Oct. 1989), p. 11.
15	Personal communication with Steve Hoffman, EPA, August 28, 1991. Seme of these sites are extremely large; a single NPL
site may contain numerous IAMs.
16	Memo from Steve Hoffman, EPA. to Bob Tonetu, EPA. "227 Mining Site in the CERCLIS Database." May 8, 1990.
l/ S5 Federal Register 3S,S04 (Aug. 30, 1990)
,S Russ Wyer, May 8, 1991

Remediation may not be as thorough when conducted by potentially
responsible parties as when it is conducted by EPA or the state. The
Office of Technology Assessment detected a pattern of EPA selecting
less stringent cleanup technologies to reach a settlement with
responsible parries."
Costs	Administrative and transaction costs are very high. The American
International Group, a large commercial insurance company, estimates
that up to 60% of the money spent by the government and responsible
parties is spent on administrative and legal fees. Others argue,
however, that these administrative costs are dropping.
Costs would be borne by the responsible parties -- either directly
(Section 106) or as reimbursement for costs borne by EPA, the states
or private persons (Section 107). If a state does not have sufficient
funds to respond first and sue responsible parries later for
reimbursement, the state will have to rely on EPA to bring the
enforcement action.20
The Office of Technology Assessment has criticized EPA for often using
a cost-benefit analysis to reduce cleanup objectives. OTA believes,
instead, that EPA must base its cleanup objectives on environment,
safety and health criteria, and then consider cost in selecting a
technology to meet those objectives.2"'
In some cases, CERCLA responsible parties may exist, but they do not
have the financial resources to complete a CERCLA remedial action.
Courts are increasingly holding insurance companies liable under
comprehensive general liability insurance policies they issued decades
ago.22 Researching the past ownership of an IAM and then
researching (and litigating) the past insurance coverage of these
companies is likely to be an expensive and time-consuming effort. The
effort may be worthwhile for a few verv expensive remedial actions if
the only alternative is to turn to a Superfund-financed remedial action
under Section 104. A state may be willing to pursue the insurance
angle, for example, on a large IAM on state land because the state
Supra, note 14. at p 6.
10 See note 10, supra.
31 Supra, note 14, at p 17.
23 !n 1990, five state supreme courts (California, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, and Washington) interpreted
comprehensive general liability insurance policies as providing coverage for CERCLA cleanup costs. Federal courts are divided on
the issue. These rulings generally do not affect policies written after 1980, when insurance companies began explicitly excluding
pollution coverage from their comprehensive general liability policies. See Parker, Arco Suit to Recover Pollution Costs Drawing
Attention, in The Oil Daily (December 11, 1990).

would also be a responsible parry (as the landowner) -¦ and, thus,
would have to pay 50% of the remedial action costs for a Superfund-
financed cleanup."
Fairness	Responsible parties are defined very broadly in CERCLA. CERCLA
contains an "innocent landowner" defense'1 for landowners who made
appropriate inquiries before obtaining the property, and who did not
know (and had no reason to know) that hazardous substances were on
the property. This defense is unlikely to apply to many IAMs because
the CERCLA-listed hazardous substances (e.g., heavy metals in waste
- piles, acid mine drainage) are often apparent in even the most
superficial visual inspection. .Also, the purchasers are often miners
who bought the property because of their knowledge of the site's past
mining history. The defense may be available for the most "innocent"
landowners -- e.g., people who purchase homes in a subdivision which
they later discover was built over an JAM. The innocent landowner
defense is not an all or nothing" defense - EPA will consider all of the
evidence and may negotiate a de minimis settlement with "semi-
innocent" landowners for little or no money."
Legal Issues Could the federal government be a potentially responsible party (as an
"owner") regarding mines and mining claims on federal lands? Could
the federal government be held responsible for patented mining ciaims
on which some of the mining occurred before the lands were patented,
and thus, while the federal government was the landowner?
Time	According to the .American International Group, the time between
identifying a site and beginning cleanup can be 7-9 years, with an
additional 2-3 years required for actual cleanup. Much of this startup
time is devoted to identifying potentially responsible parties (PRPs)
and EPA negotiation with the PRPs to determine what remedial actions
are required and who will perform them.
CERCLA Natural Resource Damage Claims:
CERCLA Section 107(f)2t> authorizes state, federal and tribal officials to require
responsible parties to pay damages to compensate the government for injury to, destruction
of. or loss of natural resources belonging to the government. Natural resource damage
13 See the CERCLA discussion under Government Options, pp 136etseq
24	42 U S.C S 9601(35).
See Anderson, The Innocent Landowner Defense; Settlement with de Minimis Landowners under CERCLA," in Hazardous
Materials Control, March/ April 1990
25 42 U S C. $ 9607(f)

claims are designed to reimburse the state or federal natural resource trustee for any residual
damages that remain after a CERCLA remedial action (by the government or by responsible
parties) has been completed. The money must be used to restore, replace or acquire
equivalent resources. Listing on the NPL is not required to assert a natural resource damage
claim. The Department of the Interior has established guidelines for conducting natural
resource damage assessments." Although the procedures are not mandatory, if the federal
or state natural resource trustees use these procedures, there is a rebuttable presumption that
they have correctly determined the extent of the damages -- i.e., the responsible party then
has the burden of proving that the damages were calculated incorrectly.28
Effectiveness Section 107 does not apply where the damages29 and the hazardous
substance release occurred wholly before December 11, 1980. This is
unlikely to completely eliminate natural resource damage claims for
many iAMs because they are probably continuing to release the same
materials today as they were before 1980.
A greater obstacle may be the statute of limitations. It may be too late
to file new natural resource damage claims regarding 1AM releases.
(See discussion below under Legal Issues.)
Natural resource damage claims can be used to obtain money from
responsible parties or the Superfund to pay for additional
environmental restoration work at an LAM. Claims can also be used as
a settlement tool to get responsible parries to agree to more thorough
remedial actions at an IAM. (See Case Study box, next page)
Natural resource damage claims are not available for damages that
were identified in an environmental impact statement "or other
comparable environmental analysis" as an irreversible and irretrievable
commitment of resources and the federal agency authorized that
commitment of resources as part of its permit decision.30 This
limitation will not affect older mines because an EIS cannot
retroactively authorize past natural resource damages. However, it
could restrict natural resource damage claims for some mines that were
27	43 C.FR. Pan 11
28	42 US.C. 9 9607(0(2)(C).
29	Some courts have noted thai this section of CERCLA uses the term "damages" loosely and that it is unclear whether Congress
meant the injury (e.g., fish killed by mine drainage) must occur after 1980 or the state's expenses (e.g., restocking the scream) must
be incurred after 1980.
30	42 U S.C. $ 9607(0(1)

opened after die National Environmental Policy Acr1, was enacted m
parties would
bear the costs.
CERCLA imposes
a limit of S50
million per
release for natural
resource damage
claims. If the'
stare or federal
natural resource
trustee is unable
to obtain payment
from the
parries, the claim
can be asserted
against the
Assessing the
extent of narural
resource damages
and assigning a
dollar amount to
those damages is
likely to cost
several hundred
thousand dollars
for an 1AM.32 If
a natural resource
damage claim Ls
taken to trial,
rather than
settled, litigation
costs are likely to
be extremely high
because this is an
On December 9, 1983, Colorado filed six
lawsuits against responsible paries for natural
resource damage claims; five of these suits
concerned lAVs. Colorado alleged that each
release caused S50 million in natural resource
damages -- the maximum amount that can be
recovered under CERCLA. Many of the cases
involved fish being killed by mine drainage.
Colorado did not follow the Department of
Interior's optional guidelines for assessing
nacural resource damages. Instead, it used a
contingent valuation survey •• a common
economic tool. People affected by an I AM were
asked how much they valued the lost resources.
This mechod captures, for example the lost
enjoyment of people who cannot fish in an
affected stream, in addition to the more tangible
damages such as lost revenue from fishing
The lAMs in the natural resource damage claims
were aiso the subject of abatement actions under
CERCLA Section 106. Some of Colorado's
natural resource damage claims became a lever
to get the responsible parties to agree to more
thorough remedial actions. A stringent cleanup
technology leaves fewer natural resource
damages that the responsible party must pay for.
Colorado has settled some of its natural resource
damage claims in exchange for increased
remedial action; in some cases, it has also
received cash payments. (Cash settlements are
getting larger in cases that have settled after
Colorado's claims.) The other claims remain
open and are subiect to further settlement
42 u se $4 4321 eiseq.
~2 Personal communication with Colorado Attorney General Office, Feb. 13, 1991.

unsettled area of law with numerous legal questions yet unanswered.
Fairness The same fairness issue arises here as under Section 106 (abatement
action), above.
Legal Issues Because few, if any, natural resource damage claims have been decided
by the courts (rather than being settled out of court), numerous legal
issues are unresolved. For example, the meaning of the December 11,
1980, cutoff date has been the subject of a great deal of debate and
multiple court cases. A key issue is whether a state can collect for
decades of damages, as long as the release or the damages continued
after December 11, 1980.
As mentioned above, under Effectiveness, it may be too late now to file
new natural resource damage claims regarding IAM releases that the
state or federal government has known about for more than three
years. CERCLA requires the natural resource trustee to present a claim
(against the Superfund or a responsible party) within three years of
the later of: 1) the date of discovery of the damage and its connection
with the release; OR 2) the date on which the Department of Interior
adopts final regulations for natural resource damage claims.33 The
Department of Interior finalized its natural resource damage
assessment regulations on August 1, 1986, and March 20, 1987.
States, environmental groups and industry sued the Department of
Interior over these regulations. In 1989, the court ruled that some
aspects of the regulations were contrary to CERCLA and remanded
parts of the regulations to the Department of Interior for revision.34
As of April 29, 1991, the Department of Interior has issued proposed
regulations for one of the two types of court-ordered revisions."
These regulations interpret the three-year statute of limitations as
being triggered with the effective date of the final versions of both
types of court ordered revisions. The Department of Interior expects
the second set of proposed regulations to be issued in the summer of
1992. Following a 90-day comment period, the three-year statute of
limitations could begin to run in the fall of 1992.36 It is possible, in
light of the litigation, that the three year statute of limitations will not
13 42 U.S.C. M 9612(d)(2) and 9613(s).
34	Stateof Colorado v. U.S. Departmentof the interior, 880 F. 2d 441 (D.C. Cir. 1989); Stateof Ohio v. U.S. Departmentof the
Interior. 880 F. 2d 432 (D C. Cir. 1989)
35	56 Federal Register 197S2 (April 29, 1991).
Personal communication with Cecil Hoffman, Depanment of Interior, July 18, 1991.

start running until Interior finalizes the regulations in compliance with
the court order.37
Other unresolved legal issues include: hew natural resource damages
should be calculated; and the distinction between public and private
natural resources.
History	Narural resource damage claims have been filed by several states and
local governments ("acting on behalf of the state).3* Few, if any, of
these claims have been decided by the courts. Some state and local
governments have obtained cash settlements from responsible parries;
ochers have used the claims as a lever to obtain more thorough
remedial action by responsible parries. Colorado has been the most
active state -- especially with respect to lAMs. (See Case Study on
previous page.)
Time	Litigation and settlement discussions can be time-consuming. For
example, some of Colorado's claims that were filed in late 1983 remain
open as of February 1991. This is partly because the nature and
extent of the natural resource damages cannot be determined until the
remediation technology has been selected - which is another lengthy
process. If a natural resource damage claim is settled as part of the
negotiations over Section 106 abatement actions by responsible parties,
the natural resource damage claim is unlikely to significantly add to
the time needed to complete the whole CERCLA process. However, if
the natural resource damage claim is not part of a settlement
agreement, separate Litigation on the natural resource damage claim
could take years following the selection of a remedial action.
The court did net address this Issue.
38 e g , Slate of Idaho v Hanna Min Co.. 982 F. 2d 392 (9th Cir. 1989); Sta:e of Idaho v. Howmet Turbine Component
Corp , 814 F. 2d 1376 (9th Cir. 1987); In rc Acushnet River Si New Bedford Harbor Proceedings re Alleged PCB Pollution, 716 F.
Supp. 676 (D. Mais 1989); Slate of Idaho v. Sunker Hill Co.. 63S F Supp 66S (D. Idaho 1986); City of New York v. Exxon Corp..
633 F Supp 609 (S.O.N.Y. 1986), U S v She;l Oil Co.. 605 F supp. 1064 (o. Colo 1985); Mayor and Bd. of Aldermen of Town
cf Bocnton v Drew Chemical Corp., 621 F Supp. 663 (D NJ 1985). State of New York v. General Electric Co., 592 F Supp. 291
(D. NT :584). These cases generally deal with preliminary mattery such as the responsible parties' unsuccessful mouons to dismiss
the natural resource damage claims.

State Superfund Laws:
Most states have enacted legislation similar to the federal Superfund.3® While many
of these statutes simply implement the federal progTam, some statutes go beyond this and
may provide an independent basis for requiring responsible parties to remediate LAM sites.
As discussed above under CERCLA Abatement Actions, CERCLA does not give states the
authority to compel responsible parties to take remedial actions at a site. However, some
state Superfund statutes may provide this authority. The scope of this report does not
include an analysis of each state's Superfund laws.
State General Mining Laws:
Some states have remediation
requirements in their general mining
laws or specific mine-related provisions
in their general tort laws.
Eleven of the WGA reporting
states require that abandoned mine
shafts or excavations be fenced or
covered to prevent injury to humans or
livestock: Arizona, California, Colorado,
Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New
Mexico, Nevada, Washington,
The Arizona inacnve/abandoned mine law
squarely places the burden of hazard elimination
on the parry responsible for the hazard, or,
ultimately, the property owner. When a
complaint is received regarding a hazardous
situation at an old mine site, a state inspector is
dispatched to determine the nature and extent of
the hazard, and to locate the responsible party
through mining claim or land ownership records.
An order requiring proof that the hazard has
been eliminated within 60 days [photos, receipts,'
etc., are acceptable proof] is then sent to the
responsible parry. If no response is received
within the 60-day period, a certified lerter is sent
which allows an additional 30 days to comply
with hazard elimination, under penalty of legal
action by the state Artomey General. Failure to
comply with an order to eliminate a hazard is a
Class 2 misdemeanor. Compliance has been
excellent with regard to safety hazards.
Environmental h?zards are referred to the
Arizona Deparrment of Environmental Quality,
since a more scientific approach may be required
for remediation.
39 See, e.g., Alaska, Alaska Stat. $46.08.010, "Oil and Hazardous Substance Release Fund;" California, Cal. Health & Safety
Code (25370, "Hazardous Substance Compensation Act;" Colorado, Colo. Rev. Stat, J25-16-10); Minnesota, Minn. Stat. Ann.
5115B 01, 'Environmental Response Fund;" New Mexico. N.M.S.A. J74-4-1, "Hazardous Waste Act;" Oregon, Or. Rev Stat.
§466.600, "Oil and Hazardous Materials Emergency Response and Remedial Acbon Fund;" Utah, Utah Code Ann. J26-14d-100;
Wisconsin, Wise Stat. Ann. |J44.44, "Hazardous Waste Management Act."

Wisconsin, and Wyoming.'*1 Some also mention that shafts and drill holes must be sealed
somehow, to prevent leaching of giound water through potentially contaminated areas:
California and Colorado. Most of these laws empower a county official to cover or fence the
excavation, at the county's expense, if a responsible parry cannot be found to pay.
California and Montana define an open mine shaft as a public nuisance.41 California
also classifies a failure to cover an open mine shaft as a misdemeanor. Minnesota and
- Wisconsin both hold the landowner Liable for fencing or covering any mine openings on their
land; Wisconsin landowners who fail to do so are subject to fines of up to S200 and/or
imprisonment of up to 6 months.
Effectiveness Most state mining laws contain provisions which, like Arizona's (see
box on previous page), focus on dealing with safety hazards at mine
sites, not environmental problems.
Because the mechanisms for implementation and enforcement of such
general laws may already be in place, the cost of this option may be
relatively low.
Like CERCLA, the Arizona state law first looks for a responsible parry,
then attributes Liability to the landowner. Potential unfairness issues
arise if rhe landowner is not the person who mined the land, or is, in
fact, unaware of the existence of a mine on his property.
Because most of these laws have been actively enforced for ten years
or more in these states, few open-ended legal issues complicate their
In place in a number of states.
As shown in the .Arizona example, once the program is operating
remediation of a safety hazard can be rapid following a complaint.
State Tort Law:42
Tort law deals with injuries suffered by one person due to the actions (or inactions)
of another person. UnliJce the previous section, this section addresses general tort law which
40 Arizona. Ariz. Rev Stat. 927 318, California, Cal Health & Safety Code §24400; Colorado, Colo Rev. Stat. 434-32-113;
Michigan, Mich. Comp, Laws Ann. 5425.108; Minnesoia, Minn Stat. A/in. $180 03 (3); Montana, Mont. Code Ann §82-4-231,
Nevada, Nevada Rev Stat $513 094; New Mexico, N M.Stat Ann §69-27-3; Washington, Wash. Rev, Code Ann. §78.12 010 •
78.12.070; Wisconsin, Wis. Stat. Ann. §167 27; Wyoming, Wyo. Star. §35-11-414.
See discussion below under State Ton Law
42 For a general discussion of state tort law as i: relates to mine waste, see Jacus & Root, The Law of Mine Waste A Primer:
Mine Waste from Agncola so CERCLA and Beyond. 35 Rocky Mtn Min. Law !nst., pp. 9-22 to 9-27 (1989).
Legal Issues

is applicable to a wide range of subjects -- from abandoned mines to automobile accidents.
In some states, tort law is largely governed by common law -- the law that has been
evolving in the court system (both in U.S. courts and British courts) over hundreds of years.
In other states, the legislatures have enacted statutes to modify or replace much of the
common law. [A state-by-state discussion of tort law is beyond the scope of this project.]
The four common law actions most likely to apply to lAMs are: negligence, trespass,
nuisance (public or private) and strict liability. An action is started when the injured
person0 files a lawsuit in court against the person causing the injury. In most cases, the
action would be brought by a person whose property has been damaged by the LAM - e.g., a
fishery which had been damaged by acid mine drainage. In some cases (particularly for
public nuisance), a state would bring the action. Enactment of federal and state statutes on
mining and environmental issues may have partially preempted common law actions on
environmental issues. Another generic issue is the impact, if any, of state "ton reform" --
under which some states have limited the amount of money injured persons can receive in
common law suits (in response to rising insurance costs of all kinds).
CERCLA has an impact on state ton law. If a person brings an action under state law
for personal injury or property damage caused by a release of a hazardous substance,
pollutant or contaminant, CERCLA substitutes its own statute of limitations (the time in
which a lawsuit must be filed) Lf the state statute of limitations is less favorable to the
injured person. Under CERCLA, the clock does not start running until the plaintiff knew (or
reasonably should have known) that the personal injury or property damage was caused by
the hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant."
Negligence is the failure to act as a reasonable and prudent person would act. With
respect to an IAM, this would mean that the mine operator did not act as a reasonable and
prudent mine operator would act. A negligence suit could also be filed against a current
landowner who was not the mine operator/owner, but the landowner's actions would be
compared to. what a reasonable, prudent non-mining landowner would have done. The
action could be brought by anyone who was harmed by the mine - e.g., a state or municipal
water board whose water was contaminated by acid mine drainage, an adjoining landowner.
Effectiveness Unless a federal, state or local government has been harmed, this
action depends on private parties to file suits -- which limits the
effectiveness. Government suits may be possible for IAMs where acid
mine drainage damages public water supplies or adjacent federal, state
or local land (where the government agency would sue for damage to
43	Injured person is a general term referring to any entity (including people, businesses, and government agencies) which has
suffered harm. It does not necessarily refer to bodily injury.
44	42 U.S C. « 96Sa

irs properry). It is possible that the government could bring the action
whenever the mine affected "waters of the srate" (which may be
defined differently in each state) or "navigable waters" (if the federal
government were to bring suit). How effective this option would be
depends on the answers to the legal questions raised below. This
option is likely to be least effective for mines which were abandoned
many years ago, when the reasonable, prudent mine operator typically
did nothing to reclaim a site.
Ln addition to the actual remediation costs, there would be litigation
costs for each (AM. This option is probably not cost-effective for
relatively inexpensive 1AM problems, but may be acceptable for larger
problems. Who bears the remediation costs depends on the answers to
the legal questions raised below.
Fairness is not likely to be a problem with this option because the
defendant's actions are judged against what a reasonable, prudent
person similar to the defendant would have done under similar
Legal Issues Is injunctive relief available (i.e., can someone be forced to reclaim the
[AM) or would the court only award damages (payments to the injured
person to compensate for the damages caused by IAM)? If only
damages are available, how would damages be measured and would
this be enough money to accomplish any significant remediation? If a
private parry filed the suit, how likely is it that this person would use
any compensation to accomplish remediation (rather than, for
example, purchasing alternate water supplies or moving to another
area)? Must the harm have occurred already or is a mere threat of
harm sufficient (e.g., do you have to wait for the first fatality before
you can sue regarding a potentially unsafe mine opening)?
Time	Before remediation could start, several years would probably be
necessary for the litigation.
With respect to IAMs, trespass involves the migration of mine wastes or acid mine
drainage from the IAM to someone else's property. The person whose property was invaded
would file the suit -- against the mine operator or current landowner.
Effectiveness As with the negligence actions, discussed above, the actions would
often have to be brought by private parties who own land adjacent to
the IAM. The government could sue whenever its property (possibly
including all "waters of the state" or "navigable waters") was affected.

Costs	The issues are the same as for negligence actions.
Fairness Fairness could become an issue here. What standard of care is
required of a current landowner who was not the mine operator?
Legal Issues The questions regarding injunctions vs. damages, which were raised
above under Negligence, are also relevant to trespass cases.
History	Trespass cases involving mine wastes used to be fairly common, but
they are now filed less often than other common law actions. Some
courts have refused to find trespass where the physical invasion was
gradual or continuing (as it would be in most IAM cases), and have
said that the cases should have been filed as nuisance actions instead
of trespass."5 Some mining law sources believe that trespass actions
may become more viable again because of scientific advances in
tracing the chemical constituents of mine wastes to cheir origins.
Time	Before remediation could start, several years would probably be
necessary for the litigation.
A nuisance is an unreasonable invasion of someone else's interests. In the IAM
situation, the mine operator or current landowner must be substantially interfering with the
use and enjoyment of someone else's property. A private nuisance is one which affects the
interests of relatively few persons, who must file the nuisance suit in court. A public
nuisance affects more people (especially innocent bystanders) and is an act (or failure to act)
which adversely affects the public safety, healch or morals, or causes substantial annoyance,
inconvenience, or injury to the public. The government is responsible for pursuing public
nuisances in court. A government agency can get a court injunction ordering the person who
is causing the nuisance to abate the nuisance.
Effectiveness Depending on the answers to the legal questions, public nuisance
could be an effective option because it allows a government agency to
force someone to abate the IAM nuisance, rather than sue for
monetary damages. Unlike private nuisances, public nuisances do not
require the remediation agency to wait for a private party to file a
Costs	Litigation costs would be borne by the government for public
nuisances and by injured persons for private nuisances. Remediation

costs would be borne by the mine operator or landowner.
Whether the option is fair in most IAM situations depends on the
answer to the legal question about the standard of care the mine
operator or current landowner will be held to.
Conditions that pose a substantial threat of harm, rather than acrual
harm, mav constitute a nuisance, but courts are generally reluctant to
issue an injunction against mere threats. How is this likely to be
applied to [AM sires -- e.g., if no one has been hurt yet by a particular
mine opening or acid mine drainage has not reached a public water
supply yet? What is the legal standard of care the mine operator or
current landowner must follow.
Private nuisances are the most often used common law actions
regarding mine wastes. Public nuisance actions involving mine wastes
have not been as common. One mining law source speculated that
public nuisance actions are not used as often because they must be
filed by the government.
Time	•' Before remediation could start,' several years would probably be
necessary for the litigation.
Strict Liability:
Strict liability (liability without proof of fault) means holding people liable for the
harm they cause, regardless of whether they are doing anything wrong. It is used when
ultra-hazardous activities are involved. The theory is that when someone engages in an
ultra-hazardous activity, there is always the possibility of causing harm, no matter how
carefully the person conducts the activity. The courts have ruled that the person who
engaged in, and benefitted from, the ultra-hazardous activity should bear the financial
burden of the harm he or she causes, rather than letting an innocent bystander suffer.
Effectiveness Generally, the courts decide what constitutes an ultra-hazardous
activity. It seems unlikely char they will add mine openings to the list
because mine openings have been around for centuries, and their
dangers have been obvious and apparent since the early days of
mining. Therefore, if creating mine openings (or allowing them to
remain unsealed) was going to be declared an ultra-hazardous activity,
it probably would have been done so by now. Mine drainage is
different, though, because scientific advances continue to identify new
environmental, health and safety problems associated with the
hazardous chemical constituents (e.g., heavy metals) of the drainage.
Some state legislatures have adopted statutes declaring certain
Legal [ssues

activities involving hazardous materials to be ultra-hazardous activities
subject to strict liability.
Costs	Litigation costs on the first few cases would be very high, although
they could taper off later. (See discussion below under Time.)
Remediation costs would be borne by the landowner.
Fairness There is no "innocent landowner1" defense in a strict liability case.
Fairness also ties into effectiveness because, unless the earliest cases
are brought against people who clearly should be held responsible,
passively allowing continuing releases from an IAM is unlikely to be
ruled an ultra-hazardous activity.
Legal Issues Can an injunction be obtained against an IAM on a strict liability
theory or are monetary damages the only remedy?
History	As of several years ago, there were no reported cases of strict liability
being upheld for mining activities except in the case of blasting --
which has long been considered an ultra-hazardous activity.
Time	Litigation on the first few cases is likely to be very time-consuming
because it would set a precedent for many future cases. If owning an
IAM becomes established in the law as an ultra-hazardous activity,
future litigation could be less time-consuming than for the other
common law actions because some of the most contentious issues
would become irrelevant - e.g., what standard of care the landowner
should be held to and whether the landowner's actions met that
Improvements Rather than waiting to see if the courts will declare that allowing
releases from an IAM is an ultra-hazardous activity, a state legislature
could accomplish this through statute.
Federal Common Law:
Federal common law presents similar options as those discussed above, under State
Tort Law. One advantage of federal common law is that it may not have the same gaps or
limitations that are found in a particular state's ton law. Federal common law could also be
useful for interstate cases where an IAM in one state is causing problems in another state.
However, it is possible that federal common law in the area of pollution has been preempted
by the numerous federal environmental statutes. Two 1981 U.S. Supreme Court cases held
that the Clean Water Act preempts federal common law nuisance actions for water pollution.
An in-depth discussion of federal common law is beyond the scope of this report.

NPDES Permits:
The Clean Water Act** requires mine operators to obtain National Pollution
Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits for certain "point source" discharges to water.
Until recently, the NPDES permit program for mining operations focused on active facilities.
The NPDES program has been used rarely, if at all, for IAMS in the past.47 However, a new
NPDES permit program that is being developed for stormwater runoff from mining operations
will apply to inactive mines.
The new stormwater permitting program is an outgrowth of litigation which
invalidated EPA's stormwater regulations in 1987 -- before they had been applied to the
mining industry. The new permitting program is also influenced by the Water Quality Act of
1987, which amended the Clean Water Act's stormwater provisions -- in general, and
specifically as they apply to mining operations.
Under the amended Clean Water Act. stormwater runoff from mining operations does
not require a permit for discharges from runoff collection conveyances if the discharges "are
not contaminated by contact with, or do not come into contact with, any overburden, raw
material, intermediate products, finished product, byproduct, or waste products located on
the site of such operations.'48 In November 1990, EPA finalized its rules interpreting this
provision." If the stormwater "contacts" the listed materials, the mine operator must file a
permit-application.' EPA will then decide whether the stormwater is contaminated" by this
contact; if so, a permit is required. The permit requirement applies to active mines and
inactive mines -• those that are no longer being actively mined, but which have an
identifiable owner/operator.30 Permits are not required for coal mines reclaimed under
SMCRA or for noncoal mines that are reclaimed under state or federal reclamation
requirements after December 17, 1990.51 EPA will likely be forced to conduct an inventory
in order to implement stormwater regs.
Effectiveness The permit requirement for IAMs is limited to water discharges from
inactive mines with "an identifiable owner/operator." As discussed
below under Legal Issues, this could include all IAMs.
If a permit is required, the operator must control stormwater
46	33 U S C. H 12S1 etieq.
47	Some EPA officials believe thai ihe NPDES permits could be required even for mines abandoned before the Clean Water
Act -- e.g., ongoing discharges from abandoned mine portals EPA has not pressed this point, and ;t is unknown how many states,
if any. have regulated these IAMs as point sources Colorado, for example, has treated them as nonpoint sources :o be addressed
in the nonpoint source demonstration program. See pp 101 etseq.
43 33 U.S.C. « 1342(0(2).
49	55 Federal Register 47,990 (Nov. 16, 1990).
50	Supra note 49, at pp. 48,033 and 4S.065.
51	EPA's preamble stated that it did not have enough informauon to conclude that earlier noncoal reclamation statutes
adequately controlled stormwater runoff

discharges using Best Available Technology and Best Conventional
Pollutant Control Technology, and where necessary, water-quality
based controls.52 Strong Congressional interest in the stormwater
program may lead Congress to provide further direction as pan of the
Clean Water Act reauthorization debate in 1991 and 1992.
The effectiveness of the program could be hindered by the need to
conduct time-consuming and expensive searches of the property
records to identify all of the owners of inactive facilities.
Costs	EPA estimates that the average cost of preparing an individual
industrial permit application will be $1007. The agency estimates a
state's cost of administering this program will be $588,603 annually.53
Compliance costs cannot be predicted without more information on the
applicable technical standards for IAMs (see Time).
Fairness The mining industry is well aware of the new stormwater program,
and is familiar with the NPDES program as it applies to other aspects
of the active mining industry. This is less likely to be true for people
outside of the industry who pass on their mining properties as "family
heirlooms," which may not have been actively mined for generations.
Fairness problems could arise if these people are required to find out
about the permit program and submit permit applications by the
Legal Issues The new stormwater regulations will apply to inactive mines "which
have an identifiable owner/operator." Because all land — including
inactive or abandoned mine land -- has an owner, it is not clear
whether this language limits the universe of LAMs that will be subject
to the permit requirements.
Another question arises regarding whether an "owner/operator" is
"identifiable." Ownership of mineral interests is often highly
fragmented -- e.g., when a mining claim is passed down through a
family and subdivided at each generation. Will all of these owners be
identified through time-consuming and expensive searches of property
A key implementation issue is whether mines will be addressed
thiough group permits, general permits, or facility-specific permits. A
52 Supra, note 49. at p 47,994
U Supra, note *9 at p 48,061. Many of the administrative costs are associated with the municipal storm sewer portion of the
program not the mining portion.

group permit is a single permit imposing identical requirements on
multiple similar facilities. The permit requirements could simply state
that all rmnes must comply with 'best management practices" such as
controlling run-on, runoff and sediment. A general permit is similar to
a group permit, except that it allows new facilities (those that were not
parties to the original permit application) to join in the permit.
Facility-specific permits could require sire-by-site analysis of the mining
operation, hydrology, water quality, etc. The facility-specific permits
could contain detailed water-quality-based standards. The type of
permitting program could influence the time and cost of implementing
the program, as well as the effectiveness of the program.
Facilities must be permitted by October 1, 1992. The large number of
facilities that must submit permit applications54 makes this deadline
appear ambitious. The American Mining Congress is preparing a
group permit application that could include 200,000 facilities. Fifty-
one U.S. Senators wrote to EPA to direct the agency to extend the
deadline for group permit applications. In addition, defining how Best
Available Technology and Best Conventional Pollutant Control
Technology will be applied to IAMs is also likely to delay the October
1992 deadline.
Underground Injection Control:
The Underground Injection Control Program under the Safe Drinking Water Acr3
regulates the injection of "contaminants" into groundwater to the extent that the injection
may endanger a "drinking water source.' A drinking water source is "underground water
which supplies or can reasonably be expected to supply any public water system."54
EPA could consider classifying tailings impoundments as Class V injection wells and
developing regulations to cover these facilities. The gradual seeping of liquid from the pond
through the soil into the groundwater would be considered "injection." It is unclear whether
the regulations would apply to active mining operations only, or whether they would also
include tailings impoundments at an IAM.57
34 An unknown portion of these facilities ultimately will be required to obtain permits.
55	42 CFR 300f-3CCj.
56	42 U S C. i 300h
Personal communication with Dave Holm. Colorado Water Quality' Control Division (March 1991).

RCRA Corrective Action:
The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)58 establishes a regulatory
system :cr active hazardous (Subtitle C) and solid (Subtitle D) waste disposal facilities.
Regulation of mine wastes under RCRA has been the subject of debate in EPA, Congress, and
the courts since 1978; a key issue is whether to regulate them as solid wastes or hazardous
wastes. Congress adopted the Bevil] Amendment in 1980 to exclude all mine wastes from
Subtitle C regulation until EPA studied them. EPA and the courts have been sorting out
which wastes should be regulated under each subtitle. Some mineral processing wastes will
be regulated under Subtitle C.5' EPA has proposed developing a separate mine waste
regulatory program (Strawman II) under Subtitle D. The Strawman II program would apply
to some active mineral processing wastes and to active facilities for the extraction and
beneficiation of metallic ores, phosphate rock, asbestos, overburden from uranium mining
and oil shale.60
Only facilities which are required to obtain a hiazardous waste
treacment/storage/disposal permit (including a closure permit) under the Resource
Conservation and Recovery Act are also subject to RCRA's corrective action provisions.6'
EPA can require a facility operator to perform corrective actions to protect human health and
the environment. The corrective action provisions apply to releases of "hazardous
constituents"42 from all solid waste management units at a "facility" -- including units which
are not regulated as hazardous waste under RCRA. A "facility* has been defined as all
contiguous property under the control of the owner or operator of a treatment, storage or
disposal facility.^ EPA has explicitly stated that mining wastes which are excluded from
regulation as hazardous wastes by the Bevill Amendment are subject to RCRA's corrective
58	42 C'.S.C. w 6501 ei seq.
59	EPA's July 1990 Report to Congresson Special Wastesfrom Mineral Processing(EPA/530-SW-90-070C) examined 20 mineral
processing wastes. EPA recommended that at least 16 of the waste streams remain within the Bevill exclusion -- i.e., they should
not be regulated as hazardous wastes. EPA has tentatively determined that it may be appropriate to regulate some or all of the other
4 waste streams as hazardous wastes (Subtitle C) or under a Strawman program (Subtitle	process wastewater from
hydrofluoric acid production; calcium sulfate wastewater treatment plant sludge from primary copper processing; slag from primary
lead processing; and chloride process waste solids from titanium tetrachloride production. No more processing wastes can be added
to the Bevill exclusion. Any processing waste that was not addressed in the 1990 Reportto Congresswill be regulated as a hazardous
waste if it meets the normal RCRA criteria -• i e., the material is a listed hazardous waste or it has one of the characteristics of
hazardous waste (e.g., toxicity)
60	Although the Strawman regulatory program is being developed for active mines, it could be expanded to require reclamation
of any lAMs within the boundaries of the active facility. This would be consistent with the philosophy of the RCRA corrective action
program. Similarly, Wisconsin's Metallic Mining Reclamation Act provides that when any abandoned mining sites are included within
a proposed new mining site, the reclamation plan for the new operation mist include cleanup of the old site. Wisconsin's Non-
Meiallic Mining Reclamation Act authorizes local governments to design their own ordinances to govern non-metallic mining
reclamation; these ordinances may apply retroactively to abandoned mines.
61	42 U.S.C. | 6924(u); 40 C.F.R. § 264.101. Any facility which receives wastes after November 19, 1980, is subject to the
corrective action provisions, even if the operator decides to close the facility rather than obtain a permit.
The list of hazardous constituents is extensive and includes metals which could be found in mine wastes -- e.g., cadmium,
chromium, lead, mercury, nickel and silver 40 C.F.R. Part 261, Appendix VIII.
53 United TechnologiesCorp. v. EPA, 821 F 2d 714 (D.C. Cir : 937j.

action provisions.6* Corrective action provisions apply regardless of when the waste was
placed in the solid waste management unit -- i.e., mine wastes which were abandoned or
became inactive before RCRA are subject to corrective action.
EPA can impose corrective action requirements through administrative orders on
facilities with interim status -- facilities that accepted waste after RCRA was adopted, but that
are not required to submit their permanent permit applications yet." Once a facility reaches
the permit application stage. EPA (or the state, if it has been delegated Subtitle C permitting
authority) will specify the required corrective action in the Subtitle C permit. If a release has
migrated beyond the facility's boundaries, the facility operator must take corrective action
beyond the site as necessary to protect human health and the environment. If the facility
operator cannot obtain permission for off-sire work, EPA will determine on a case-by-case
basis what on-site measures must be used to address off-site releases.
With respect to lAMs, there are wo possible "triggers" for the corrective action
provisions. The first trigger is the presence of certain active mineral processing facilities.56
If an active processing facility is pan of the same "facility" as an LAM, the operator of the
processing facility can be required to take corrective actions on the IAM wastes. The second
possible trigger is the EPA Strawman proposal. Strawman II limits the corrective action to
regulated units -- existing and new units. However, EPA has indicated that states are free to
regulate inactive and abandoned units. The Strawman regulations could be written to give
state regulatory agencies the authority to expand the corrective action provisions on a state-
by-state basis to inciude corrective actions on lAMs. Without this language in the EPA
regulations, state regulatory agencies generally would need state legislative action to expand
the corrective action program to include lAMs. A Strawman corrective action program for
lAMs would apply to more lAMs than the current program because the trigger would be an
active mining facility. There are probably far more lAMs that are pan of an active mining
facility than are pan of certain active mineral processing facilities (the first trigger discussed
Effectiveness The number of lAMs subject to RCRA corrective actions depends on
the number of IAMs co-located with active mineral processing facilities,
or possibly the number of LAMs co-located with active mining
operations. In addition, EPA is currently overwhelmed by pending
corrective actions.67
The proposed cleanup standards under the RCRA corrective action
M 52 Fed Reg. 4S.788 (Dec. 1, 19875
EPA does not delegate corrective action authority regarding interim status facilities, but has noted that states can enact
parallel enforcement authority under state statures. 55 Federal Regisrer30.85S (July 27, 1990)
66 Cnly those processing wastes which EPA regulates under Subtitle C will serve as corrective action triggers.
47 Russ Wyer, May 8, 199!

program68 are generally the same as those used for CERCLA remedial
actions. The General Accounting Office noted several differences
between the two programs, though, which could cause RCRA
corrective actions to be either more or less stringent than CERCLA
cleanups." First, CERCLA actions must comply with all "relevant and
appropriate" state cleanup standards, even if they are not legally
applicable to the site. Under RCRA, only "applicable" standards must
be met. Second, CERCLA includes a cost-effectiveness test that could
relieve a site from meeting certain "applicable or relevant and
appropriate requirements'' (ARARs) if the cleanup costs would be too
high. RCRA does not include this cost-effectiveness test.
Costs	Corrective actions would be conducted, and financed, by current
operators of the co-located active facility (processing facility or
possibly a mine). On-the-ground cleanup costs probably will be similar
to CERCLA cleanup costs because similar cleanup standards probably
will be used.
While RCRA's corrective action is directed at current operators, several
courts have ruled that current operators performing RCRA corrective
action can sue other responsible parties under CERCLA for cost
recovery.70 Therefore, administrative costs under RCRA may be just
as high as those under CERCLA, as multiple parties dispute their
Fairness There are no exceptions for "innocent landowners" as there are in
CERCLA. However, there may be less need for such an exception in
RCRA because RCRA's application is already much narrower than
CERCLA's application. Only operators of active hazardous waste
treatment, storage or disposal facilities are subject to RCRA's corrective
action provisions. A fairness issue could be raised when the owner of
an active facility is required to take corrective actions on
inactive/abandoned wastes which it did not create, but which are now
part of its "facility."
History	RCRA corrective action provisions may not have been used extensively
in the past to address LAMs, because the most likely "triggers" (mineral
processing facilities) have been excluded from Subtitle C regulation
M Although the expanded corrective action program has been in effeci since 1984, EPA is now propping more detailed
standards. SS Federal Register30,798 (July 27, 1990)
69	U.S. General Accounting Office, Hazardous Waste CorrecriveAction Cleanups Will Take Years to Complete. GAO/RCED-88-48
(Dec. 1987), pp. 36-37
70	Chemical WasteManagementv. ArmstrongWorld Industries,669 F Supp 1285 (E.D. Pa. 1987); MardanCorp. v. CGC Music,
l.rd.. 600 F. Supp. 1049 (D. Ariz. 1984), affd 840 F 2d 14S4 (9th Cir. 1986).

since the 1980 Bevill Amendment. Therefore, in the past, I AM
corrective actions could be triggered only.by non-mining activities
(e.g., chemical processing plants) located at an !AM. The potential for
corrective actions at [AMs will expand greatiy as EPA finishes its Beviil
studies and formally brings mining-reiated activities (e.g., some mineral
processing facilities) under Subtitle C regulation.
Time	The RCRA corrective action process is similar to the CERCLA process.
EPA has made the following estimates7'' of the time needed to
complete the process for each site, based on its experience under
Facility Assessment	3 - 6 months
Facility Investigation	12-24 months
Corrective Measures Study	6 - 9 months
Corrective Measures Implementation 6 months - many years
There is a large backlog of sites (approximately 2500) that must
undergo corrective action. EPA believes that corrective action may not
be started at all sites until 2005 and many corrective actions will take
20 years to complete."
Interactions The RCRA corrective action program closely parallels CERCLA's
enforcement program against responsible parries. RCRA is directed at
facilities which are at least partially active, and CERCLA focuses more
on inactive sites. EPA estimates that one-third of the operators of
RCRA corrective action sites will go bankrupt or be unwilling to
perform their RCRA corrective action; these sites eventually will be
transferred to the CERCLA program.'3
RCRA Imminent Hazard and Citizen Suit Provisions:
RCRA's imminent hazard provision74 authorizes EPA to sue anyone (including past
or present owners or operators) who has contributed to past or present handling, storage,
treatment, transportation or disposal of any solid or hazardous waste which may present an
imminent and substantial endangerment to health or the environment. The citizen suit
provision75 authorizes any person, including a state or local government, to bring a similar
Supra, note 69, at p. !5.
'2 Supra, rioie 69, p. 2.
3 Supra, note 69, p. 2.
42 U.S.C. 9 6973.
¦12 U.S.C J 6972.

imminent hazard action if neither EPA nor the state is pursuing the matter under RCRA or
CERCLA.76 The court can issue restraining orders to stop the disposal or issue injunctions
to require the past or present owners or operators "to take such other action as may be
necessary." EPA, but not the states, can also bypass the courts and issue an administrative
order to require the owners or operators to take whatever action is necessary to protect
public health and the environment.
The imminent hazard provision is not limited to active operations. This was not clear
when Congress enacted this provision, and the courts were divided on whether the imminent
hazard provision could be used to require past operators to take actions regarding current
leaking from their inactive or abandoned wastes. In 1984, Congress amended this section to
clarify its intent. Repeated references to "past or present" operators, owners, etc. were added.
Also, instead of referring to persons "contributing" to waste disposal, the section now applies
to any person "who has contributed or is contributing" to the waste disposal.77
Effectiveness The number of IAMs potentially subject to RCRA's imminent hazard
provisions is likely to be much larger than the number of IAMs subject
to RCRA's corrective action provisions. Unlike the corrective action
provisions, the imminent hazard provisions are not tied to the RCRA
permitting requirements. Therefore, no active facility is needed to
trigger the imminent hazard provision.
"Imminent and substantial endangerment" does nor necessarily mean
that an emergency exists. The legislative history of this section has led
courts to adopt a broader interpretation that includes conditions that
create a risk of future harm. For example, the imminent hazard
authority has been held to apply to a hazardous substance leaking
towards a water supply, even though the substance would only cause
harm after years of drinking the water.78
EPA has not published regulations interpreting its imminent hazard
authority. Therefore, there are no explicit cleanup standards as there
are under CERCLA, or as have been proposed for the RCRA corrective
action program. Generally, IAMs rank low among all imminent
hazards EPA must address.
Costs	The costs of remediation would be bon.e by past or present owners or
operators of the IAM. Because the cleanup standards are not
76	Unless indicated otherwise, any reference in the fallowing discussion to the imminent hazard provisions includes the citizen
suit secnon.
77	42 U.S.C. i 6973 (a) (emphasis added].
78	Mintz. Abandoned Hazardous Waste Sites and the RCRA Imminent Hazard Provision: Some Suggestiorrfor a Sound Judicial
Construction, 11 Harvard Environmental Law Review 24?, 270 etseq. (1987).

established, it is unclear how the remediation costs under the RCRA
imminent hazard provision would compare to remediation costs under
other programs. Litigation costs would also be incurred by EPA, the
state, or a citizen - at least initially, until the courts had clearly
defined the application of the imminent hazard authority against LAMs.
Administrative costs could be substantially lower in later cases if EPA
was then able to issue administrative orders without going to court.
Fairness This option is limited to a person "who has contributed or is
contributing to" an 1AM. This may exempt some of the more
'innocent" landowners.
History	EPA used its imminent hazard authority frequently shortly after RCRA
was enacted. In 1979 - 1981, more than 60 lawsuits were filed under
this section." After CERCLA was enacred in late 1980, EPA started
using CERCLA more often than RCRA to address abandoned sites.
However, as CongTess reiterated in 1984, RCRA's imminent hazard
authority is not limited to active facilities. Therefore, there does not
seem to be any obstacle to EPA or the state (under the citizen suit
provision) using the imminent hazard provisions to address LAMs.
EPA has never used its imminent hazard authority against an IAM.
Although it has the authority to do so, EPA believes that, at least
initially, exercising this authority against IAMs would require a major
commitment of resources for litigation and there may be problems in
demonstrating "imminent and substantial endangerment" at IAMs.*
Time	Remedial action for each site (at least for the earliest sites) would have
to allow time for litigation (by EPA, a state or a citizen) before any
work started on the ground. Later, EPA could use its less time-
consuming authority to issue administrative orders under § 6973.
Clean Air Act:
The key IAM air problem is fugitive dust, which may contain toxic metals. The state
Lmplementaoon plans under the Clean Air Act31 may address fugitive dust, but, according to
EPA. they generally do nor address toxic pollutants in dust at mining sites. The 1990
amendments to the Clean Air Act established an initial list of 189 hazardous air pollutants
See supra note 73. at p. 2-48.
Personal communication with Rob Walline, EPA Region V1U (March 20, 1991) and Russ Wyer (May 8, ;991)
r 42 U S.C. « 7401

subject ro emission control. Included in the list are a variety of metal compounds which may
be found at lAMs, e.g., cadmium, lead, manganese, mercury.
Reclamation Requirements on Federal Lands:
Major federal agencies affected by mining operations are the National Park Service,
the Bureau of Land Management, and the Forest Service. The National Park Service (NPS)
imposes reclamation requirements on all mining operations established after September 28,
1976. Only pre-law mining operations that are continuing after the cutoff date must be
incorporated into an approved reclamation plan." Further, most compulsory options are
not applicable because remining is not allowed on National Park Service lands.
The NPS hopes to encourage volunteer efforts to reclaim affected Park Service Lands,
but so far no one has taken advantage of the offer. The Park Service also has pending
approximately 40 applications for Clean Water Demonstration Projects under section 319 of
the Clean Water Act/3 The National Park Service believes a fund of approximately $50
million is necessary to clean up safety hazards at more than 10,000 sites.
The U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) also impose
reclamation requirements on mines located on federal lands. The BLM requirements are
based on the "prevention of unnecessary or undue degradation" of federal lands required by
the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA).*4 FLPMA imposes the requirement
on mining activities conducted under the Mining Law of 1872, as amended, on lands
managed by BLM and to patented mining claims in the California Desert Conservation Area,
and on lands patenred after FLPMA's effective date (October 21, 1976)."5 The BLM
regulations at 43 CFR 3809 apply to operations which have created disturbances since 1981.
The BLM also requires reclamation of leasable mineral operations under the Mineral Leasing
Act, as implemented by 43 CFR Part 3590 and mineral material operations under the
Materials Act of 1947, as amended, as implemented by 43 CFR Part 3600. The reclamation
requirements under all of these authorities are currently being standardized.
The Forest Service's reclamation requirements apply to disturbances on federal lands
since 1974.86
Effectiveness The BLM and Forest Service reclamation requirements are limited to
IAMs which have become inactive or abandoned relatively recently.
" 36 CFR 9 11, Subpari A
U Personal Communication with Dave Shaver, National Park Service, May 8, 1991.
M 43 U.S.C. 94 1701 etseq
85 43 L'.SC t 1718.
" General Accounting Office, Public Lands: IntcriorShould Ensure Against Abuses from Hardrock Mining, GAO/RCED-86-48
(March 1986), p. 10

Although BLM's authority extends only to the public lands it manages,
some influence on operations located partially on patented land may
. be exerted in the process of reviewing and approving plans of
operations. However, BLM has no enforcement authority for
noncompliance on the portion of the operacon located on patented
lands, unless it causes unnecessary cr undue degradation on the
unpatented lands.
AU mining activities in the California Desert Conservation Area require
a plan of operations which is enforceable by BLM. BLM does not
require an operator to reclaim an abandoned m,ine as a part of a
current operation, although many abandoned mines are reclaimed as a
result of adjacent or actual disturbance of the abandoned mine by
current operations. Inactive mines must be reclaimed by the operator
after an extended period of non-operation.57
The General Accounting Office criticized BLM for not placing a higher
priority on mine reclamation and recommended that BLM take a more
active role in reminding operators of their reclamation responsibilities.
Cost	Costs of reclamation are required to be borne by the mine operator.
However, historically BLM has been reluctant to require mine
operators to post reclamation bonds because this would impose
additional costs. The General Accounting Office criticized BLM for
excusing most mining operations from reclamation bonding
requirements.3' The BLM has proposed rules to extend bonding
requirements to additional exploration and mining operations.*
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978:
The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA) regulates
"active" mill railings. Active tailings are defined as all tailings that were licensed at the time
the law was enacted, except 24 specific sites defined as abandoned and subject to a
government cleanup program. (See "Government Funded" section.) Nuclear Regulatory
Commission regulations implementing UMTRCA include reclamation standards, bonding
requirements, and, generally, post-reclamation transfer of land ownership to the federal or
" 43 CFR 3809.3-7
M General Accounting Cffice, Federal Land Management: Limited Action Taken to Reclaim Hard rock Mine Sites.GAO/ RCED-88-
21 (Oct. 19871.
state government. A payment must be made for the cost of long-term surveillance.91
Approximately 10-12 mills are actively being reclaimed and another 10 are in a standby
UMTRCA covers only uranium mills and some upgrading facilities, which involved
chemical treatment. UMTRCA does not cover uranium mines. There may be a limited
number of small mills that were unlicensed at the time UMTRCA was enacted which are not
covered. A few of such facilities have been voluntarily reclaimed by the licensee of an
adjacent mill.*2
" 10 CFR Pan 40 Appendix A.
n Personal communication with Dennis Sollenberger, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, August 27, 1991.

This section addresses options which would encourage others co conduce remediation,
. but which would not require them to do so. Examples include cooperative programs
between government and industry, and removing disincentives to remining.
Remining Incentives:
Some 1AM sites contain valuable minerals or materials which could be extracted by
remining. For example, in some cases waste rock found at sites could be used as
construction material. A well-planned re miring project has the potential for improving the
environmental conditions and reducing public health and safety hazards at a previously
mined site. Under the right circumstances, remiring can mitigate such problems without the
expenditure of public funds or the difficulties and delays typically associated wich
enforcement actions.
The attractiveness of remining depends on the economics of the project. Traditional
factors for deciding whether to mine, such as quaLity of the ore, market prices, and mining
* cost, will be the primary determinants of the economics of a remining project. New
technologies, such as cyanide leaching, have made remining of some old sites economically
attractive. However, the responsibility for existing environmental damage at the mining site
can also be a significant determinant of the economics of a remining project. Such liability
can cur two ways. Potential reminers can be dissuaded from a remining project because of
the Liability they incur for existing environmental damage at z. site. On the other hand,
current owners of an inactive/abandoned mine may have an incentive to remine to improve
environmental conditions at the site and thereby avoid additional cleanup costs which may
be incurred through the enforcement of environmental statutes - e.g, CERCLA, RCRA, Clean
Water Act.
It can be argued that improvement of the environment should be the most important
criterion against which incentives for remining should be evaluated. That is, a policy option
to encourage remining (e.g., liability indemnification under CERCLA, variances from NPDES
permit requirements, bonding incentives) is appropriate if remining results in a net
environmental improvement compared to the condition of the site prior to remining.
In addition to the incentives/disincentives for remining resulting from liability under
existing environmental laws, there are a variety of other government actions that could
7 improve the economics of remining. These include: modifications to environmental
requirements for remining projects including variances from water standards and bonding
' initiatives; financial incentives such as tax credits for reprocessing operations; preferential
government purchasing of reprocessed minerals; permitting priority/assistance. These
options are discussed below. In addition, government-funded assessments of the valuable
characteristics at specific previously-mined sites, and support for research for mineral waste
- reprocessing could be used to encourage remining.

CERCLA Liability Exemptions:
Some mining industry representatives have identified potential CERCLA liability for
pre-existing problems as being "the single most important obstacle" to remining.'3 EPA is
studying the possibility of alleviating CERCLA liability for remining projects. There are
several ways this could be accomplished.
First, EPA could adopt a policy to defer NPL listing of LAM sires and modify the
"delisting" procedures to make it easier to remove IAMs from the NPL. This could solve the
problem if reminers were certain enough that the policy wouldn't change later and subject
them to retroactive liability for their remining activities.
Second, EPA could conduct site-by-site negotiations with potential reminers regarding
the scope of liability for past mining activities. Three possible advantages of this approach
are: 1) the agreements are less likely than the NPL listing policy to be reversed in the furure;
2) it mav be more acceptable to environmental groups than a complete immunity from
liability; and 3) EPA could tailor mining plans, remediation activities and liability to specific
site problems. A major disadvantage is that site-specific agreements would be much more
time-consuming and expensive than a more generic solution. Another disadvantage is that
EPA and the reminers may be generally unwilling to commit the time and money to negotiate
an agreement until a site's remining potential has been determined, while mining companies
will be unwilling to subject themselves to CERCLA liability by exploring a site before
reaching an agreement.
Third, EPA is investigating whether reminers can be granted CERCLA indemnification
similar to that now given to CERCLA remedial action contractors.9' The contractors are not
liable under CERCLA or any other federal law unless they cause damages as a result of their
negligence, gross negligence or intentional misconduct. If the contractors cannot obtain
adequate private insurance at reasonable cost, the federal government can also indemnify the
contractors for their negligence (but not gross negligence or intentional misconduct).
A fourth possibility would be to exempt reminers from strict joint and severable
liability. In this way, a company could still be liable for any environmental damage it caused
during remining but would not be liable for previous damage.
States also can incorporate remining incentives into their regulatory programs or
abandoned mine land programs. Colorado's Mined Land Reclamation Division has
recognized that CERCL\ liability may be an obstacle to remining. The state has a policy of
encouraging remining by negotiating with reminers to establish acceptable cleanup levels and
to minimize potential CERCLA liability. If the state approved a remining project, the state
would agree not to file CERCLA lawsuits against the reminer and not to support any federal
93 Gold Fields and AMAX, comments on EPA's Strawman !! for regulating mines under the Resource Conservation and Recovery
42 U.S C { 9619.

efforts to declare the remining project a CERCLA site. The state would also refrain from
filing CERCLA natural resource damage suits, unless the Executive Directors of the
Departments of Health and Natural Resources and the Attorney General agreed to file a
Effectiveness It is unknown how many abandoned mines would be economically
attractive for remimng if die CERCLA. issue were resolved.
Because a mining company can incur CERCLA liability through the
mere act of leasing an abandoned mine for the purpose of exploring its
remining potential, many of these abandoned mines have never been
, . investigated. .Also, the effectiveness will depend on the site-specific
economics of each project. Remining is unlikely to result in a large
number of lAiMs beL-.g remediated.
Gean Water Act Variances:
Remining projects with preexisting
discharges may have difficulty meeting the
water quality standards that apply ro new
projects. The Clean Water Act currently
contains a variance for coal remining
projects.'*' Under the variance, NPDES
permits can be modified to take into account
the pH of pre-exiscing discharges and the pre-
existing discharge of certain pollutants. This
variance could be expanded to include
noncoal remining projects.
.Another way in which the Clean Water
Act could be used to promote remining
projects is by subsidizing innovative water
pollution control programs in remining
projects as nonpoint source demonstration
projects." This program is discussed later in
this section.'* -
Effectiveness This variance has the
potential for improving
As parr of the 1987 amendments to the
Clean Water Act, a Scare Revolving Fund
was established. The revolving loan
program was established ro replace the
sewage treatment grants program. Under
the program. EPA will provide
capitalization grams to states, which wtil
then set up a revolving loan program.
Each stare program is somewhat different.
While the majority of states are using the
program to fund sewage treatment
facilities, other uses of die fund could be
approved by EPA if a water quality benefit
was demonstrated. Wyoming is using its
loan program to fund cleanup of
underground storage tanks. The state has
instituted a 1 percent sales tax on gasoline
to pay back che loan. EPA funding of the
program is scheduled to end in FY-94.
No remining under this program "las taken place as of March 1991
* 33 U.S.C. 9 1311 (p).
" 33 U.S.C. f 1329(h).
See Clean Water Act Demonstration Projects, pp 101 et seq.

condition ac IAMs. Some officials have warned that regulatory officials
must be flexible, though, because detailed performance data is lacking
for many water quality management practices. Mine operators may be
unwilling to remine if they believe they will be held perpetually
responsible for meeting unrealistically high water quality standards."
Legal Issues The enactment and implementation of variances from environmental
standards is difficult to achieve.
History	Such variances have been granted in three out of five states that either
administer or have expressed interest in the coal remining variance
program. West Virginia has received one application but the variance
has not yet been issued. Pennsylvania has granted ber.veen 70 and 80
variances. Maryland doesn't have regulations providing ¦ :r such
variances, but has reported that operators have expressed Lnterest and
the state is considering promulgating such regulation. Virginia has
granted approximately 2 or 3. And Ohio, which has regulatory
provisions for variances, has not yet received any applications, but has
several operators who have expressed interest.'00
Time	One drawback is that it takes a full year to gather the necessary data:
pH level monitoring, etc. The processing time for regulatory authority
varies from state to state, but is never less than two months.101
Bonding Incentives:102
Remining could be encouraged by: limiting the area covered by a bond; reducing the
amount of the bond; limiting the liability associated with bond release; and offering bonding
Requiring the bonding of abandoned workings which are near, but not touched by, a
remining operation could dissuade the operator from undertaking voluntary reclamation of
such adjacent areas.
The basis upon which bond requirements are calculated can affect the amount of the
bond required. Remining operations with complex pre-existing problems could result in
bonding requirements in excess of those for virgin mining operations. Reducing the size of
David Holm (Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Division) and Bob Shuckle and Pat Nelson (Colorado Water Quality Concrol
Division), "Water Quality Protection and Implementation of the State's Mining Policy (Nov. 1988),
100 Personal communication with Greg Conrad, Interstate Mining Compact Commission, July 12, 1991
105 ik-j
102 Brent W. Blauch, "Encouraging Abandoned Mine Land Reclamation via Remining: A Federal, State, and Industry Initiative"
(draft), (June 17, 1986).

:he bond for remining operations would improve the financial attractiveness of the project.
Remining may result in problems unanticipated at the time of permit issuance, such
as unanticipated acid mine drainage. One incentive for remining would be to terminate an
operators liability for any environmental problems at a site and release the bond upon the
operator's compliance with all requirements of the approved permit. This scheme has been
incorporated into several coal remining bills in Congress.C3
Under a bond credit scheme, an operator would perform reclamation work on I AM
sites off the mining permit site ro generate bonding credits which could then be applied to
other mining permit acreage. This approach would ease problems operators face in securing
" adequate bonds for mining activities.
The downside risks of underbonding are significant, i.e. insufficient bonds could
promote future abandonment of mining operations, leaving new IAM problems.
Effectiveness Bonding incentives may be most applicable for small miners who face
greater difficulties in securing bonds. Bonding incentives to help fix
existing IAMs could, under certain circumstances, lead to the creation
of new IAMs.
The cost to reminers would be less under the bonding schemes.
Regulatory agency costs could be higher, depending on the
construction of the bonding incentive program. Bonding incentives
(and the associated risks of underbonding) may be granted to reminers
who would have undertaken remining even in the absence of juch
Bonding incentives would give reminers advantages not available to
competitors mining virgin materials.
Legislation/ regulations under state law or a mine waste program under
RCRA would need to allow limitations on the area covered by a bond,
reductions in the amount of bond for remining, limitations on liability
associated with bond release (e.g., "unanticipated events"); and
bonding credits.
Bonding incentives have been exrensively discussed in relation to coal
mining. It is unknown if any states offer bonding incentives for
noncoal remining.
Several years would be required to incorporate bonding incentives in
state law and a mine waste program under RCRA.
03 For exam?!?, h'R 40S3 of ;he 101st Congress.
Legal Issues

Tax Incentives for Reprocessing Operations:
Tax incentives could be enacted to encourage remining. The incentives could take a
variety of forms, e.g., credits against tax due under the Internal Revenue Code could be
granted for projects which reprocess mine waste, exemption from state or local property or
severance taxes.
Effectiveness Effectiveness depends on the size of the tax incentive. As with all tax
incentives, there are economic inefficiencies as the incentives may be
given to remining projects which would have gone ahead in the
absence of such incentives. Tax incentives will only affect the
remining of those IAMs which contain deposits which can be profitably
remined. IAMs without valuable deposits would not be affected.
Costs	Dependent on the size of the tax incentives and number of parties
taking advantage of the incentives.
Fairness The cost of the tax incentives would be bome by other taxpayers.
Such cost would be offset to some degree by reduced outlays for direct
government remediation efforts and the creation of jobs which would
not have been created in the absence of such incentives.
Legal Issues Separating remining costs from virgin mining costs at the same site
may be difficult.
History	None.
Time	At best, it would likely take several years to enact such incentives.
Thereafter, the privare sector could be expected to respond
expeditiously to the incentives.
Preferential Purchasing of Remined Minerals:
A number of units of government have established purchasing practices which include
a preference for the purchase of recycled materials, such as paper. Such purchase programs
could be extended to the purchase of materials using remined minerals.
The U.S. government purchases and upgrades minerals for the Strategic and Critical
Materials Stockpile. Materials in the Stockpile are also periodically sold. The government
could give purchase preference for Stockpile minerals produced from remining. The value of
the Stockpile inventory as of September 30, 1990 was $9.4 billion. Goals are established for
Stockpile materials. In some cases, the current inventory is in excess of the goal; in other
cases the inventory is less than the goal. Minerals where the current inventory is less than
the goal include: aluminum metal group; aluminum oxide; abrasive group; antimony;
bauxite; beryllium metal group; cadmium; chromium; cobalt; columbium; copper; fluorspar
(acid grade); indium; lead; phlogopite block mica; nickel; platinum group metals; tantalum

group; titanium sponge; vanadium group; and zinc. Stockpile minerals in excess of the goal
include: asbestos; bismuth; diamonds; fluorspar (metallurgical grade); graphite; manganese;
mercury; mica; quartz; sapphire and ruby; silicon carbide; silver; talc; tin; and rungs ten. °*
Effectiveness While preferential purchase programs can be effective in inducing
demand for recycled materials, it may be more difficult to crack the use
of reprocessed minerals in final products than is the case with
commodities such as paper. Preferential government purchasing
programs, however, could induce the establishment of an appropriate
labeling program and encourage similar preference by
nongovernmental entities.
Purchases for the Strategic and Critical Materials Stockpile, however,
would be more easdy cracked since the minerals are purchased in a
raw form.
Costs	Unknown, depends on whether a subsidy is granted for minerals
provided by remming and the amount of such subsidy.
Fairness If successful, a preferential purchase program would put reminers at a
competitive advantage compared with miners of virgin minerals.
Legal Issues Similar to those associated with other government preferential
. purchase programs.
History	None.
Time	It would likely take a number of years to establish government
preferential purchase programs and more yean for the market to
respond to the new purchasing patterns by producing more
reprocessed mineral products.
Permitting Priority/Permitting Assistance:
Incentives for remining could be provided by regulatory authorities by providing
reminers assistance in developing permit applications and by giving priority review to permit
applications for remining operations.
Effectiveness This is unlikely to be very effective in promoting remining among large
operators who have the resources to develop remining plans. Like the
Small Operator Assistance Program (SOAP) for coal miners under
SMCRA, permitting assistance in areas such as baseline data collection
'* U S. Department of Defense, "Strategic and Critical Materials Report to the Congress, Operations Under the Strategic and
~r.tical Materials Stock Piling Act during the period April 1990 • September 1990," pp. 28-31.

Legal Issues
and providing assistance in applying for a permit could be of greater
assistance to small operators.
The degree of incentive provided by granting expedited permit review
to remining applications depends on how backlogged permit reviews
are at the regulatory authority. Implementation of new mine waste
rules under RCRA may affect the size of permit backlogs.
Neither permitting assistance nor permitting priority for remining are
likely to result in the remediation of a significant number of lAMs.
The states' cost of providing permit development assistance to reminers
is unknown. The SOAP program under SMCRA may provide a
reference point for estimating costs; $28 million was spent to assist
2,276 operators from 1978 through 1987.
Providing expedited permit review and permit development assistance
to reminers discriminates against other miners.
Granting priority permit review and permit assistance will require
statutory/regulatory changes and appropriations.
It is not clear if expedited review and permit assistance have been
granted in any state for noncoal reminers.
It may take several years to enact changes to statutes and regulations,
appropriate funds and work our the bugs, particularly in a permit
assistance program.
Reclamation to Satisfy Civil Penalties:
The concept of allowing an operator to perform reclamation work at an LAM to satisfy
civil penalties at an operating mine is not new. In the coal area, some states have used this
concept for several years prior to the enactment of SMCRA. [The federal Office of Surface
Mining and some states have also collected civil penalties and used the proceeds for
reclamation of abandoned coal sites.] The operator's agreement to perform reclamation at an
IAM in lieu of paying civil penalties could be executed through a regulatory authority's
settlement process for civil penalties. Reclamation in lieu of civil penalties could reduce
collection problems, result in lower cost reclamation than a government-contracted
reclamation program, and address smaller sites than may be addressed under a government
LAM program.
135 Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, "An Assessment of the Abandoned Mine Land Reclamation Program
to Determine Whether the Fee Collection Provisions of tne Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 Should Be Renewed
and/or Modified" (Draft) (2/1/89).

Effectiveness The number of lAMs that could be addressed under this type of
program would depend, in part, on the number of civil penalties
issued. An operator's agreement to perform reclamation may depend
on the proximity of the LAM to the operator's mine. The program is
unlikely to reach a significant portion of lAMs.
Costs of remediation would be borne by operators found in
noncompliance with the law. Reclamation in lieu of monetary
penalties could be more costly for the regulatory authority to
administer than collection of monetary penalties, since LAM sites to be
reclaimed would need to be identified and inspected following
reclamation. However, the state may also receive a larger amount of
reclamation for a given amount of money than it would if it collected
the civil penalties and hired reclamation contractors.
Fairness Requiring reclamation on an IAM for a violation on an active mine
seems fair.
History	Reclamation in lieu of civil penalties has been used by states in the
reclamation of abandoned coal mines.
This program could be implemented rapidly (assuming no statutory
changes are needed) in states which regulate noncoal mines. In
several years, it could be incorporated into potential federal mine
waste rules under RCRA.
Clean Water Act Demonstration Projects:
Section 319 of the Clean Water Act provides grants for innovative water pollution
control programs.106 The federal government provides 60% of project costs. A top priority
is controlling "particularly difficult or serious nonpoint source pollution problems, including,
but not limited to, problems resulting from mining activities." The states are authorized to
provide financial assistance to persons for the costs of demonstration programs. This
program was Listed above as a possible remitting incentive. However, it does not have to be
associated with a remining program. A current landowner who is not conducting mining
operations may be interested in addressing an acid mine drainage problem that is interfering
with other potential uses of the site or which may subject the landowner to CERCLA liability.
The 60% federal cost share may be sufficient incentive for the landowner to fund the rest of
the project.
Effectiveness This program could be effective in addressing the most severe acid
33 U.S.C. } 1329(h).

mine drainage problems, depending on how many other projects are
competing for gTarns under this program.
Costs	Congress authorized S70 million for FY-88, $100 million annually for
FY-89 and FY-90, and S130 million for FY-91. No more than $7.5
million of this was to be spent on a separate gTant program for
protecting groundwater quality. Appropriations have fallen far short
of authorizations. The Administration did not include the Section 319
program in its budget requests for FY-88 through FY-91. No funds
were appropriated in FY-88 or FY-89.'07 Congress appropriated
approximately S40 million in FY-90 and $50 million in FY-91. The
Administration has requested $24 million for FY-92.
Some state money may be required if a private party does not consider
the 60% federal share a sufficient incentive.
Fairness Because participation in the demonstration programs is voluntary,
there would not be a fairness problem with respeci to the sites that are
chosen. States have developed selection processes when available
moneys are insufficient to fund all proposed projects.
Legal Issues Private parties may run the risk of incurring CERCLA liability for
participating in CWA demonstration programs because they may be
considered facility "operators." This fear has put the demonstration
program on hold in Missouri. These fears may not always be well-
founded. however, because the private parties who may be interested
in the program may already have CERCLA liability (e.g., as current
landowners) regardless of whether they participate in the
demonstration program. Colorado has proposed shon-term and long-
term solutions to this liability problem for private parties and
government agencies. (See the discussion under Clean Water Act
Demonstration Program in the Government-Funded Section, pp. 115 et
History	Although some states have used the Section 319 program to
demonstrate new technologies for addressing water pollution from
lAMs, several factors have kept this program from being used more
extensively for lAMs: 1) failure of Congress to fully fund the program;
2) Congressional "set-asides'' of program money to address specific
non-IAM problems; and 3) concerns over CERCLA liability. (See box
for Colorado's experience with the Section 319 program on LAMs.)
107 Congress allowed states to reprogram up :o 20% of their Clean Water Act construction grant money to the SecDon 319
propam in FY-88 and FY-89, which allowed some states to conduct Clean Water Act demonstration programs in ihose years - but
at 'Jie expense of other Clean Water Act programs

Improvements Because appropriations
have fallen short of
authorizations, states
could ask Congress to
fully fund this program.
It may be appropriate to
earmark a certain portion
of the Section 319 funds
to address 1AM problems.
In the past, Section 319
funds have been
earmarked for specific
non-lAM projects.
Addressing the CERCLA
liability issue would
improve the effectiveness
of this program.
Colorado has spent approximately
$600,000 under the Section 319
program to address !AMs. Five projects,
costing 550,000 io 5300,000, have
demonstrated a variety of technologies.
In the Gamble Gulch project, che Water
Quality Control Division worked together
with che Mined Land Reclamation
Division to build bogs co neutralize acid
mine drainage. In the Pennsylvania
Mine project, lime was fed into the
drainage to neutralize it. In other cases,
tailings have been moved out of creek
and avalanche paths.
Local governments and landowners often
volunteer their efforts as pan of
Colorado's Section 319 programs.

State Substitution Clauses:
Some states encourage reclamation of previously mined areas by allowing a mine
operator to reclaim an abandoned mine as a substitute for reclaiming the operator's new
mine. Colorado, Florida, Missouri, and South Carolina have these substitution clauses. 08
South Carolina has used this provision approximately five times, requiring operators to clean
up five acres of pre-law land for every exempted acre of new mining land.'09 Also,
Wyoming milling officials have informally encouraged similar independent efforts by
individual operators. In addition, Missouri provides that a mine operator may re-vegetate an
alternate previously mined site instead of planting over a current "new" mining
In each state, the substitution clauses require the operator to file a reclamation plan
and a bond for the substitute mine site to be reclaimed. The previously mined land to be
reclaimed may be owned by the operator, by the state, or by another private individual. The
substitute site generally must be equal in acreage to the new mine site, but the state has the
power to allow the operator to reclaim a greater or lesser number of acres if the cost of
reclamation is equivalent to cost of reclaiming the new mined land. This might occur in
situations where a new mine is situated on land that is impossible or very difficult to reclaim,
but an older site, with more acreage, could be cleaned up for the same cost.
Effectiveness When a substitution clause is exercised, a mine operator is relieved of
reclamation responsibilities on a new mine, in exchange for reclaiming
another IAM. Therefore, the overall effectiveness in addressing 1AM
problems depends on whether the substituted reclamation provides
greater environmental and safety benefits. This may be the case, for
example, where site-specific conditions would make a new mine very
expensive to reclaim, and the mine operator agrees to reclaim a larger
(but no more expensive) IAM instead. However, if the state must
eventually reclaim the new mine, the substitution clause may not
provide many benefits.
History	Substitution clauses in some states have been used infrequently, if at
all, in recent years. For example, Florida has not used its substitution
clause in ten yeais.
Wyoming operators have, in two situations, voluntarily reclaimed old
land in exchange for decreased reclamation requirements for their new
mines. Operators of three uranium mines in Wyoming were allowed to
deposit spoil from new uranium mines into old uranium pits, and were
:M Colorado, Colo. Rev. Stat J34-32-116(7)(q); Florida, Fla. Stat. Ann. |211 32(l)(b); Missouri, Mo. Star. Ann.
}444 774(9]; South Carolina. S C. Code Ann. $4-8-20-90.
Personal communication with Craig Kennedy, A&sisum Director, Div. of Mining and Reclamation, June 26, 1991
1,3 Missouri, Mo. Stat. Ann. 4444 774 (11).

not required to fill in the new pit. The advantage to the operator of
this exchange is that it has a place to put its waste, and is excused
from reclaiming the new pit. In addition, the state benefits by having
an old pit filled, and saves the cost of transporting the new waste to a
disposal site. Similarly, operators planning to mine bentonite on sires
that include old bentonite mines have voluntarily reclaimed the old
mines in the process of cleaning up their new mining activities.
Otherwise the state would spend money to reclaim the old sites, only
to have its efforts destroyed when the operators remined the same
area. Approximately 12 sites in Wyoming have been reclaimed this

This section discusses options under which a government agency (federal or state)
would perform the remediation. The work could also be done cooperatively by several
government agencies -- e.g., city/state, water districL/state, state/National Park Service.
Several issues are common to all or most of the government options:
~	How can remediation best be achieved when there is generally a shortage of
funds and there is a large backlog?
~	How can government agencies overcome some landowners' reluctance to allow
remediation activities even if the government agency is paying for the
remediation? If the reluctance is based on the landowner's belief that the
mine can be reactivated later, what remediation techniques could leave this
option open? What are the property and income tax consequences to the
landowner if the government pays for remediation? If landowners are
reluctant to reclaim because of the historical significance of the mines, how
can the historical aspects of the mine be preserved while abating the hazards
to public health and safety?
~	If a government agency conducts remediation, who is responsible for
permanent maintenance at the site?
In addition to the power to compel responsible parties to conduct cleanup (as
discussed earlier), CERCLA establishes a fund which EPA can use to finance its response
actions. Section 104 " authorizes EPA or the states to undertake a wide range of response
actions where there is a release or substantial threat of a release of:
~	a hazardous substance (defined broadly by reference to other federal
environmental statutes) into the environment; or
~	any pollutant or contaminant which may present an imminent and substantial
danger to the public health or welfare. "Pollutant or contaminant'1 is defined even more
broadly than hazardous substance to include any substance which may reasonably be
anticipated to cause "death, disease, behavioral abnormalities, cancer, genetic mutation,
physiological malfunctions (including malfunctions in reproduction) or physical
deformations" in any organism.
42 U S.C. 5 9604.

If EPA, a srate or a private party responds under Section 104, it can later obtain
reimbursement from responsible parries under Section 107, as discussed earlier."2
A site must be on the National Priorities List (NPL) to be eligible for fund-financed
remedial action (long-term), but not for short-term removal actions (generally limited to 52
million and 1 year). As a practical matter, most removal actions are focused on NPL
The NPL contained 48 IAM sites as
of August 1991.:M CERCLA, as amended
by the 1986 Superfund .Amendments and
Reauthorization Act, requires EPA to
consider certain additional factors before
including mining waste sites on the
NPL.'15 EPA must consider: 1) the extent
to which the hazard ranking score was
affected by the presence of mining waste;
and 2) available information on the
quantity of hazardous substances contained
in the mining waste, their potential for
release, the potential exposure to humans
and the environment, and the degree of
hazard to human health and the
Effectiveness As of August 1991,
the NPL contained 48
mining-related sites.
Although a few sires
could be added each
year, it is unlikely
that there will be a
significant increase in
the number of sites.
The Colorado Tailings project in Butte,
Montana, is an example of die obstacle
CERCLA can present. In 1984, the Montana
Department of State Lands received a $1
million Congressional appropriation to clean
up the site under the Abandoned Mine Land
program under SMCRA. Montana was ready
to begin work immediately on the most toxic
features of the site.
In the meantime, EPA was studying the
entire area as a potential CERCLA site. EPA
said that it would not list the Colorado
Tailings site on the NPL, but that it would
like the state to clean the site to CERCLA
standards. Adopting EPA's technical
suggestions wouid have raised the project
cost to S3 million and would not have
guaranteed that the state would not be held
liable later as a potentially responsible party
if the cleanup was incomplete. The state
decided to defer to EPA to use its CERCLA
authority on the project. Six years later; no
cleanup at the site has begun under
CERCLA focuses on environmental problems, although some LAM
safety problems may be addressed incidentally -- e.g., capping or
backfilling a dangerous mine opening to control runoff inro the mine
and acid drainage from the mine.
See pp 66 ecseq.
',3 Telephone conversation with Linda Wheeler, EPA Denver office, January '991.
U Personal communication wilh Steve Hoffman, EPA. August 28, 1991
1,5 42 U.S.C. } 960S(sJ-

Costs	The costs would come, at least initially,"6 from the Superfund, which
is financed by taxes on industry. The state in which the site is located
must pay 10% of the costs of Superfund-financed cleanup, or up to
50% of the costs if the state or local government is a responsible party.
The cost of a CERCLA remedial action varies widely. EPA estimates
that a remedial action -- from the remedial investigation and feasibility
srudy through long-term maintenance of the remedial action -- will
cost an average of $31,570,000.117
The 1986 Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act authorized
S8.5 billion to be appropriated from the Superfund taxes over a five-
year period (ending in FY-91). In late 1990, Congress extended the
Superfund tax for four years (through 1995) and appropriated $1.75
billion for FY 1991. This may not be sufficient to complete remedial
action at all NPL sites - even if responsible parties pay the cost for a
large number of the sites."8
Mining sites, as a group, ranked higher than average, based on their
Hazard Ranking Scores. However, EPA considers other factors in
developing its remedial action priorities. The possibility of using
abandoned mine reclamation money under SMCRA (see next section),
for example, may lower the CERCLA action priority of LAM sites.
The Office of Technology Assessment has criticized EPA for often using
a cost-benefit analysis to reduce cleanup objectives. OTA believes,
instead, that EPA must base its cleanup objectives on environmental,
safety and health criteria, and then consider cost in selecting a
technology to meet those objectives."9
Fairness The taxes that fund Superfund are directed primarily at the petroleum
and chemical industries -- not the mining industry. Therefore, a
fairness issue could be raised regarding using the Superfund to finance
a large number of costly IAM remediations.
Time	Remedial actions under CERCLA are typically very time-consuming
because of the process that must be followed in listing a site on the
NPL and srudying the site to determine the appropriate response
16 As discussed earlier, whoever conducts the remedial action can later sue the responsible parties, if any are available and
solvent, for reimbursement.
:'7 55 Federal Register 35,511 (Aug. 30, 1990).
'18 The Office of Technology Assessment estimates that the cost of cleaning up all Superfund sites could be J500 billion over
ihe next 50 years. Supra, note 14, at p. 27.
1,9 Supra, note 14, at p. 17.

actions. The Office of Technology Assessment found that more than
half of the sites added to the NPL in 1989 had waited more than 8
years from the time of site discovery until thev were proposed for the
NPL 20
Interactions There are two key interactions with other laws: 1) fears of CERCLA
liability inhibiting remediation under other programs; and 2) the
overlap between CERCLA and RCRA's corrective action program.
Some states have been reluctant to use other remediation programs
(e.g., SMCRA) to address lAMs because the srate could become a
potentially responsible party if EPA later selects the site for CERCLA
action. A state that has improved conditions at an IAM, but has not
completely cleaned up a site, could later be required to pay all of the
costs of remedial action under CERCLA.
Congress attempted to alleviate this problem when it revised SMCRA
as pan of the FY-91 budget reconciliation bill. CongTess provided that
a state would not be liable under any federal law (which would
include CERCLA) as a result of any reclamation activities under
SMCRA -- except for damages caused by the state's gross negligence or
intentional misconduct.However, most states conduct their
reclamation work through contractors.
Because Congress did not explicitly extend this protection to the states'
contractors, states may not be able to find SMCRA contractors who are
willing to risk furure CERCLA liability.''3 The other limitation on
Congress's action is that it only protects states when they are
conducting reclamation under SMCRA; the threat of CERCLA liability
still exists if states conduct reclamation under other programs - e.g.,
state mined land reclamation laws, Clean Water Act demonstration
Many of the sites eligible for CERCLA listing are also subject to RCRA's
corrective action provisions.123 EPA has a policy regarding NPL
listing of sites subject to RCRA Subtitle C (hazardous waste)
regulation. This policy is not currently relevant to lAMs because LAMs
are not subject to RCRA Subtitle C regulation. However, it does apply
to some smelting facilities -- those which EPA removed from the Bevill
exclusion, thereby subjecting them to Subtitle C regulation. These
sites will not be included on the NPL unless EPA has some indication
Supra, noce 14, at p. 12.
;J1 30 U.S.C. % 1235(1).
It may be possible to interpret the state s Immunity as extending to the state's contractors.
113 Se discussion above at pp 84 ei seq.

that the corrective action authority within RCRA Subtitle C permits
will not be sufficient to clean up a site -- e.g., if the operator is
bankrupt, has lost its RCRA permit, or has a clear history of
unwillingness to comply with RCRA requirements.21
The Surface Mining Cor.~ol and Reclamation Act'25 is designed primarily to address
coal mining problems. However, states have been allowed to address high priority
abandoned noncoal mines with SMCRA funds. Some coal stares also have used part of their
SMCRA funds to conduct inventories of noncoal lAMs.
Abandoned mine reclamation under SMCRA is funded by a fee on coal production.
Fee collections through FY 92 are expected to be S3,2 billion. In 1990, the period of the fee
collection was extended from 1992 to 1995. Congress may consider extending the fees
beyond 1995. As pan of the 1990 fee extension legislation. Congress expanded the srates'
ability to use AML funds for noncoal reclamation once they have completed theii coal
reclamation. SMCRA funds are also expended through the Soil Conservation Service, but for
coal projects only.
Effectiveness The effectiveness of the
AML program in
addressing noncoal
issues has been
hampered by the legal
issues identified below,
by the low priority
assigned to noncoal
projects, and the fact
that only coal-
producing states receive
Only safety hazards -- not environmental problems -- associated with
noncoal lAMs are likely to receive SMCRA funding until a state
completes all of its coal reclamation. After a state certifies that it has
completed its coal reclamation, SMCRA funds can be used to address
environmental and safety hazards at noncoal lAMs. Wyoming certified
in 1984; Montana and Louisiana certified in 1990.
Funding Remaining Afrer Completion
of Coal Safety Projects*
S Remaining
New Mexico
* Based on projected fee collections through August 3.

55 Federal Regisier35,506 (Aug 30, 1990).
,J! 30 U.S C. M 1201 eiseq.

Only mines which were abandoned or left inadequately reclaimed
before August 3, 1977, are eligible.
Sites listed for remedial action under the Uranium Mill Tailings
Radiation Control Act or CERCLA are ineligible for SMCRA funds.126
Costs	Only coal-producing states with Title V regulatory programs qualify for
AML funds, and only the "state share" funds 27 can be spent on
noncoal sites. The box shows how much of the SMCRA AML
fundseach of the WGA Mine Waste Task Force states will have left
after addressing all of the coal safety problems. This remaining money
can be used for coal environmental problems and noncoal
environmental and safety problems.
Fairness Questions have been raised about the fairness of using fees on coal
production to address noncoal problems. Questions have also been
raised about the fairness of assessing fees on coal production in states
which have completed their coal reclamation. Unless these fees are
eliminated as each state completes its coal reclamation, allowing those
states to use AML fees for noncoal reclamation could be considered as
a way to mitigate one aspect of the fairness issue.
Legal Issues A key obstacle to performing noncoal reclamation under the AML
program has been the possibility that a state reclamation agency (and
its reclamation contractors) may later be considered a responsible party
under CERCLA if the IAM site is on the NPL list or is later included on
the NPL. This problem has been mitigated by recent amendments ro
History	SMCRA funding for noncoal projects has been used airnosr exclusively
to address safety hazards -- e.g., sealing open mine shafts. The
exception is Wyoming, which has been able to address environmental
hazards since it completed all of its coal reclamation in 1985. Until
coal reclamation is completed, the Office of Surface Mining has been
reluctant ro authorize use of SMCRA funds to address noncoal
environmental hazards. In some cases, OSM has refused to allow
states to address related environmental problems at a site while
carrying out the OSM-approved project on safety hazards. The box
below summarizes the noncoal LAM projects funded by the SMCRA
126	30 U.S.C f 1241(d).
127	50% of the fees collected in each state are rerumed to the state. The other funds are allocated for a variety of purposes,
which do not include noncoa! mine reclamation.
,2a Supra, note 10S, p. 83.
See discussion above under CERCLA Interactions, pp. 109 et seq.

Noncoal IAM Projects Funded by SMCRA through FY-88
Sites SfMillionsI
Mineral Tvoe
clay, copper, gold, iron, lead, marble,
silver, rungsren, uranium
copper, gold, lead, silver, zinc
fluorite, gold, iron, silver, uranium
clay, limestone
gold, zinc
VVY 350
bentonite, copper, feldspar, gold,
graphire, iron, limestone, platinum, sand
and gravel, shale, silver, sulphur,
tungsten, uranium, vermiculite

21 noncoal minerals
Time	Addressing a noncoal safety problem (e.g., sealing a mine opening)
under SMCRA generally takes 18 months to three years from the time
a problem is identified. Typically, a state will combine 10-100 nearby
mine openings as a single project.131
Addressing environmental problems at an LAM probably would take
considerably longer than addressing a safety problem. However, most
states have little experience with addressing noncoal environmental
problems under SMCRA. No significant number of noncoal 1AM
environmental problems can be addressed until a state completes its
coal reclamation.
130	Supra, note 105, p. 1S9.
131	Personal communication with Dave Bucknam. Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Division, and Richard Junrunen,
consultant (April 1991).

Improvements This program will not be effective for lAMs unless the issue of a
contractors CERCLA liability is resolved and the priority for noncoal
sites under SMCRA is raised. This program will not address IAMs in
states which do not produce coal
State Abandoned Mine Land Laws:
All but three of the WGA Mine Waste study states require operators of new mines to
submit a reclamation plan in order to obtain a permit. Most nf these reclamation statutes
became effective between 1974 and 1977, although some states enacted reclamation laws as
early as 1969 (Wyoming), and some as late as 1990 (Nevada, Alaska).
A relatively small number (seven) of states have programs which specifically allocate
state funds132 for the reclamation of sites mined before the effective dates of this
reclamation legislation ("pre-law'1 or "previously mined" land). California, Florida, Idaho,
Montana, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming all have such programs.'33
California has an Abandoned Site Program which includes both Superfund sites and
abandoned mining operations. The progTam provides counties which have not yet
catalogued such sites with funds for discovering, surveying, ranking, and cleaning up sites
within their county. The money comes from the state's Superfund.
Florida allocates 25% of its severance tax on minerals for the cleanup of lands mined
before the effective date of the state's phosphate reclamation statute (July 1, 1975).
Approximately 82,000 acres of land were in this category in 1988; 12,000 acres were
. undergoing reclamation under the program at that time. Florida has estimated that
reclaiming its pre-law phosphate mines will cost approximately $250 million. The state also
uses the fund to buy wildlife corridors in abandoned lands. The fund currently has $100
million in reserves. Almost $9 million has been budgeted for reclamation projects in 1992.
The state predicts that all phosphate mines will be reclaimed by 2010-2020.xi*
Idaho gives its Board of Land Commissioners the power to reclaim, on its own
initiative and with the permission of the landowner, any land which becomes/has become
"affected" by mining operations either prior to or after the effective date of its reclamation
program (May 31, 1971). Also, if an operator doesn't implement its reclamation plan within
what the Board determines to be a "reasonable time," the Board may proceed as if the land
were abandoned and conduct reclamation. Funds for this purpose come from forfeited
132 These state abandoned mine programs are in addition to any noncoal reclamation programs using SMCRA fundi, as
discussed at pp. llOerseq.
California, Cal. Health & Safety Code 525369; Florida. Fla Stat .Ann 12)1.32; Idaho, Idaho Code $47-1 SI3(F); Montana,
Mont. Code Ann. 490-2-1101 ei seq ; Nevada, Nev. Rev. Star. Ann. $513.03 etseq.; South Dakota. SD Cod. Laws Ann. J4S-6B-79;
Wyoming, Statutes J3S-11-424.
134 Personal communication with Jeremy Craft, Florida Department of Natural Resources (March 1991).

reclamation bonds (can be up to $l,800/acre) and penalties (up to S2,500/day).
Montana's abandoned mines can be cleaned up through the state's Reclamation and
Development program, under which the Department of Natural Resources funds cleanup
projects through a grant approval process.135 A cqmplex funding arrangement provides the
money for this program. Ail extractive energy industries pay a Resource Indemnity Trust tax.
This income, plus taxes and license fees from metalliferous mines are deposited into a crust
fund, which the Board of Minerals and Environment invests. This interest income is
distributed among seven separate funds (including hazardous waste/CERCLA cleanup). One
of these funds is the Reclamation and Development Grants Special Revenue Account. The
Reclamation and Development Grants Program accepts proposals from state agencies and
private individuals/companies to clean up projects which are not covered under any other
state program, and for which no responsible party can be found. After up to $225,000 is
taken out of the interest income account for the Environmental Contingency Account, and Oil
and Gas Damage Mitigation Account, 46% of the remainder goes into this Reclamation and
Development Grants Special Revenue Account.
Nevada's legislation has established a program to discover and rank dangerous
conditions resulting from past mining. It is funded by a fee of fifty cents for each mining
claim transaction. In addition, the department of minerals has a program to physically fence
or fill orphaned mine openings which is funded by fees of $20 for each notice of intent and
$20 per acre for new disturbance in a plan of operations.
South Dakota allows its Board of Minerals and Environment to allocate funds from a
reclamation fund (consisting of forfeited bonds) for reclamation of previously affected
lands. 136
Although Wyoming will clean up most of its noncoal mines using remaining funds
from the SMCRA AML provisions, approximately 30-50 small sites, mostly sand and gravel
pits, have been cleaned up with state funds administered by the director of the Department
of Environmental Quality from the Trust and Agency Fund. This fund includes all SMCRA
monies (approximately $150 million of which will be spent on cleanup of noncoal, pre*
SMCRA mines), plus monies collected from fines, forfeited bonds, and settlements. The latter
is kept separate in a Fines and Forfeitures Account, from which approximately $1,100,000
has been spent on cleanup since its inception in 1973.137
135	Only four abandoned mine sites have been cleaned up through this program in the last several years.
136	An annotation in the South Dakota statute (SL 1988, ch 102, HJR 1005) notes that a failed 1988 initiated measure would
have enacted the Large-Scale Metallic Minerals Tax Act of 1988. The Act would have imposed a 4% gross sales tax on metallic
minerals from large-scale surface mines. Twenty percent of the tax would have been allocated to restore lands affected by past
mining activity. When the cleanup fund reached S25 million, 90% would have been used for restoration of prior mined lands. The
measure was rejected.
l3/ Personal communication with Gary Beech and Jim Uzell, Wyoming Division of Environmental Quality, July 16, 1991.

State "Superfund" Laws:
Mosr of the study states have some form of Superfund stature similar to the federal
CERCLA. Many of these state laws are designed primarily to implement the federal
Superfund program and to provide a funding source for the state's required matching share
of remedial action costs.iis Other states have more comprehensive programs that direct a
state agency to conduct surveys and develop site inventories that are distinct from the
National Priorities List under the federal Superfund.13* Some states specifically include
mine waste in their definitions of hazardous wastes covered by the program, but most states
simply refer to the federal definitions under CERCLA A detailed evaluation of state
Superfund laws is beyond the scope of this project.
Effectiveness The Office of Technology Assessment has criticiz'ed state Superfund
programs as being, in general, less effective than CERCLA because of
their heavier reliance on remediation technologies which are likely to
be impermanent - e.g., land disposal and containment.1*
Time	The Office of Technology Assessment concluded that state Superfund
cleanups take about the same amount of time as federal Superfund
of Surface Mining, and has proposed short-term and long-term
solutions that are supported by all of the agencies. (See box)
Time	The process
encompasses several
years. First a site
must be included in
the state's assessment
report, then be
prioritized with other
sites in a
management plan,
before entering the
year-long EPA budget
cycle. In addition,
sites not included in
the assessment report
must be monitored,
samples collected etc.,
to determine if it
should be included in
the assessment
Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation
Control Act:
The Uranium Mill Tailing Radiation
Control Act of 1978'",established a
remedial action program for a limited
number of inactive uranium processing
sites. Most of the eligible sites were listed
in the statute, and the Secretary of Energy's
authority to add new sites expired in 1979.
Remedial action is to be finished by 1994,
except for groundwater restoration
activities, which have no rime limit. Work
is performed under cooperative agreements
between the Department of Energy and the states.
Short-Term Solution
Three CWA demonstration projects in
Colorado wUl be conducted in the Summer
of 1991 as "non-rime critical removal
actions" under CERCLA. Although the CWA
wiJl provide the funds, Colorado will amend
its multi-site CERCLA cooperative agreement
with EPA to list these projects as CERCLA
projects. This will allow the state and other
involved parries to take advantage of
CERCLA's "Good Samaritan" provision (42
U.S.C. § 9607(d)). State and local
governments would not be liable except for
their gross negligence or intentional
misconduct. Non-govemment participants in
the project would not be liable unless they
were negligent.
Long-Term Solution
The 1990 SMCRA amendments relieve states
of liability (except for gross negligence or
intentional misconduct) under all federal
statutes for reclamation activities conducted
under SMCRA. Colorado will list its CWA
projects as "priority three" (environmental)
noncoal projects under SMCRA. The
Colorado Water Quality Control Division will
then contract with the Colorado Mined Land
Reclamation Division to carry out the
projects, taking advantage of SMCRA's
exemption from liability.
10 Personal communication with Greg Parsons, Nonpoint Source Program Director, Colorado Water Quality Control Division,
July 16, 1991.
144 42 U.S.C. M 7901 erseq.

Effectiveness The progTam covers only 24 uranium null tailings sites. No new sites
can be added.
Costs	The Office of Technology Assessment estimated that a cleanup under
the L'MTRCA will cost more than twice as much as the average
CERCLA cleanup.:4S OTA acknowledged that UMTRCA sites are
large, but noted several factors that should have kept UMTRCA costs
low: 1) the sites ali present similar problems; and 2) the standard
remedy is the relatively inexpensive option of earthen containment,
rather than a more expensive removal or treatment option.
New Government-Funded IAM Program
The federal government's major existing funds to remediate environmental problems
created in the past are the Abandoned Mine Land Fund, created under SMCRA in 1977 to
primarily deal with coal mine problems; Superfund, established under CERCLA in 1980; and,
the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (which addressed 24 abandoned
uranium mill tailings piles).
A new federal program could be established to help remediate LAMs not covered
under those programs. A program similar to the Abandoned Mine Lands program under
SMCRA could be established. Money for such a program could come from a diversion of
existing federal revenues or imposition of a new tax or fee.
Some believe that a new federal IAM program is needed to fill the gaps left after the
- application of existing policy options to lAMs. They argue that IAMs are a national problem
which require a national solution.146 Others believe that existing policy options, coupled
with potential new state initiatives will be capable of addressing 1AM problems.
This section focuses on the creation of an 1AM fund, similar to the AML fund under
SMCRA, to finance the remediation of IAMs. The primary issue is the sources of revenues for
such a fund.
Potential existing sources of federal funds for IAM remediation include general fund
appropriations, expanding use of fees collected under SMCRA to more non-coal applications,
£ and part of the funds collected from mineral development on federal lands.
There are various options that could be explored to raise new revenues for IAM
remediation. The options discussed here include: proposals currently before Congress to
change the 1872 Mining Law and fund an abandoned mine program; a tax on the value of
minerals produced; a tax on acres of land disturbed by mining; a tax on the products that
"5 Supra, note 67, pp. 201-202.
1 46
Comments of Kent Hanson, Environmental Mining Network at ihe May 8 WGA Mine Waste Task Force meeting.

use minerals; and a tax on mineral imports. Once the funding issue is resolved, then other
issues must be dealt with, such as: allocation of monies in an 1AM fund; project funding
priorities; and administration of a new IAM remediation program. These ancillary issues are
not examined in this report. If a new IAM tax was created, the exemption of remining from
the tax would provide a marginal incentive for remining as compared to mining virgin
Existing Funds to Finance a Federal [AM Program
Several sources of existing federal revenues have been suggested to finance the
remediation of IAMs. Such proposals as general fund appropriations and receipts from
mineral development on federal land are discussed below.
The National Park Service has proposed the use of general fund appropriations to
remediate IAMs in the National Park System. The NPS estimates there are 1,500147 IAMs in
the National Park System. To date, the minimal funding to remediate IAMs has come from
miscellaneous funds available at the end of a fiscal year. There has been no appropriation
specifically earmarked for remediation of LAMs in the National Park System.'4®
Funds collected from a fee on coal production under SMCRA have been used for
remediation of IAMs, but only in coal producing states and then, typically, in a limited way
to address public health and safety hazards, such as open shafts. (See SMCRA section.)
It has been proposed that a portion of the federal government's receipts from mineral
development on federal lands be used to remediate LAM problems associated with federal
lands. The bulk of the revenues the federal government receives from mineral development
on federal lands is acquired under the Mineral Leasing Act of 1920 (MLA) or the Outer
Continental Shelf Lands Act. Revenues from the MLA are derived from onshore federal
mineral leasing activities. Leasable minerals under the MLA include coal, oil, natural gas, oil
shale, phosphate, sodium, potassium, sulfur, asphalt or gilsonite.
Under current law, 50 percent (except for Alaska, where it is 90 percent) of the
revenues received under the MLA are returned to the state where the lease is located. Forty
percent is allocated to the federal Reclamation Fund (for use in federal water projects). Ten
percent is allocated to the general fund. Expenditure of the general fund's 10 percent of
revenues derived from mineral development on federal lands to remediate IAMs would
amount to approximately $88 million annually.149 Such an allocation of MLA receipts
would have the advantage of linking the source of the funds, mineral development on federal
lands, to the expenditure of such funds, remediation of IAMs related to federal lands. From
the federal government's perspective, remediating IAMs associated with federal lands has the
47 Memo from the Chief, Mining and Minerals Branch, Land Resources Division, National Park Service, January 16, 1990.
Personal communication with Robert Higgins, National Park Service, March 18, 1991
149 U.S. Minerals Management Service, Department of the interior. "Mineral Revenues 1989: Report on Receipts from Federal
and Indian Leases," 1990, page 14.

advantage of reducing the government's liability exposure. The disadvantage of such
allocation is that it would not address lAMs which are unrelated to federal lands.
Onshore leasing revenue is also derived from lands acquired by the federal
government. Leasing revenues from acquired lands are allocated as follows: 65 percent to
the general fund; 25 percent to the state in which the mineral resource is produced; and 10
percent to the Forest, Roads and Trails Fund. In FY 88, $45 million was received from
mineral development on acquired lands.'50 Minor revenues are also received from mineral
development on military lands. A portion of such funds could be allocated to remediate the
problems from past mining associated with acquired federal lands.
Revenues from the OCS Lands Act come primarily from oil and gas development on
the Outer Continental Shelf. OCS revenues are distributed to the Land and Water
Conservation Fund, the Historic Preservation Fund, and the general fund. In FY 88 for
example, the government collected $3.4 billion in royalties, rents and bonuses from OCS oil
and gas leases. Of that, the Land and Water Conservation Fund received $860 million, the
Historic Preservation Fund received $150 million and the Treasury received the rest. A
portion of OCS revenues could be used to remediate LAMs, particularly those in the coastal
New Taxes/Fees to Finance a Federal LAM Program
New funding sources would be needed to undertake an IAM program on the scale of
that being undertaken to reclaim abandoned coal mines. Extension of the concept
established in SMCRA (a fee on coal mining) to noncoal mining has some superficial appeal.
It would provide equity between the source of the funds (current mining) and the
expenditure of the funds (remediation of problems from past mining). However, unlike the
coal industry, the noncoal mining industry is very diverse, especially in markers and mining
Markets range from very local, as is the case with most construction materials, to
international, as is the case with precious metals. Many of the non-coal minerals mined in
the United States must compete in worldwide markets. Increasing the cost of mining may
merely drive production offshore, thereby limiting revenue collections. However, for other
commodities, the price of which is not established in the world market, such as construction
-	materials, the imposition of an LAM tax may not significantly affect mining economics. This
-	has been the case with the abandoned mine fee on coal. Depending on the scope of mining
: that is taxed, the revenue stream from current mining operations may be too inadequate or
inconsistent to finance a major federal 1AM program.
Environmental impacts from mining are more diverse in the noncoal industry than.in
the coal industry. Some types of mining will not produce acid mine drainage problems, other
150 ibid

types will not create safety hazards, such as shafts. Some types of mining result in the
removal of large quantities of material for a very small amount of end product, e.g., gold
mining. In other operations nearly all the material disrurbed is sold as a product. The
diversity of noncoal mining makes the construction of an equitable IAM tax difficult.
In identifying potential new taxes to finance IAM remediation, a number of factors
need to be considered15':
~	Tax Base/Rate. What is the tax base and tax rate?
~	Revenues. What are the projected revenues?
~	Administration. What are the certainty, compliance and collection costs, and
enforceability characteristics of the tax?
~	Tax Incidence. Who ultimately pays the tax?
~	Impact. What is the effect of the tax on economic efficiency, including
international competitiveness?
~	Fairness. What is the relationship between who pays the tax and who benefits
from the expenditures of the revenues from the tax?
Among the potential new taxes to finance IAM remediation are: taxes/fees imposed
through amendments to the 1872 Mining Law; a tax on the value of sales by the mining
industry; a tax on the land disrurbed by mining; a tax on products using minerals; and a tax
on mineral imports.
Revenues from Amendments to the 1872 Mining Law:
The 1872 General Mining Law authorizes U.S. citizens and corporations to prospect
for minerals on most federal lands, and to locate mining claims ' generally approximately 20
acres) if they discover a valuable deposit. The Law applies to minerals (e.g., gold, silver,
copper) which are neither leasable (e.g., oil, gas, coal) nor saleable (e.g., sand, gTavel). The
mining claim holder then has the exclusive right to develop that mineral. In order to keep
the claim alive, the claim holder must perform at least $100/claim of development work each
year. The claim holder can mine the claim without paying the federal government any
royalties or holding fees. The claim holder can also obtain a Datent to the lands for $2.50 or
$5 per acre. The patent gives the former claim holder full title to the surface and subsurface
of the land.
Two bills have recently been introduced in the 102nd Congress, by Rep. Nick Rahall
(D-WV) and Sen. Dale Bumpers (D-AR), to change the 1872 Mining Law. Rep. Nick Rahall
introduced HR 918 on February 6, 1991, to reform the 1872 General Mining Law and to
create a hardrock reclamation fund. Under the bill:
~	Mining claimants would not receive patents (title) to the land. They would merely
rent the claim. Rental payments would be at least $1.50/acre/year in the beginning, and at
,S1 Otto Eckstein, Public Finance. 1973, pp SO-87.

least 55/acre/year after the plan of mining operations has been approved.
~ The diligent development expenditure requirements would be increased. Rather
than the current requirement of $100/claim/year, HR 918 would impose per-acre rates that
would increase with the age of the claim. The Interior Secretary would set the rates greater
than or equal to the following: S20/acre/year for years 1-5; $40/acre/year for years 6-10;
$80/acre/year for years 11-15; and, 5160/acre/year for years 16 and older.
After the fifth year, the claimant has the option of mailing payments to the federal
government, in lieu of performing the diligent development work. These payments would be
in addition to, not instead of, rental payments. The Interior Secretary would establish the
rates greater than or equal to the following: $20/acre/year for years 6-10; $40/acre/year for
years 11-15; and, S80/acre/year for years 16 and older.
Title HI of HR 918 establishes an Abandoned Minerals Mine Reclamation Fund for
hardrock reclamation on public and non-public lands. The program parallels the Abandoned
Mine Lands program under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act for coal mines.
The Office of Surface Mining would administer the program.
Tax Base/ There are six sources of funds for the proposed reclamation program:
1)	rental payments on mining claims
2)	payments received in lieu of performing diligent
development work
3)	penalties assessed for misrepresentations regarding
the mining claims
4)	penalties assessed for violating surface management
5)	any undedicated funds from the sale of mineral
materials (e.g., sand, gravel, stone) under the Materials
Act of 1947
6)	donations
Revenues The size of the Fund is difficult to estimate. Revenues from items 3, 4,
and 6 are impossible to predict and could be non-existent. Item 5
would bring in less than $3 million. The Forest Service and Bureau of
Land Management annually collect several million dollars from the sale
of common varieties (sand, gravel, stone, etc.) on federal lands.
Twenty-five percent of the Forest Service's receipts and 80 percent of
ELM'S receipts are already earmarked for other uses, and thus, would
not be available for the hardrock reclamation fund.
The largest sources of revenues probably would be items 1 and 2.
There are currently 1.2 million mining claims (generally 20 acres
apiece) on public lands. Many of these claims are likely to be
relinquished because of the new rental payment requirements and the

increased diligent development requirements. The Congressional
Budget Office estimated in 1988 that a $1000/claim holding fee
(which is only slightly greater than HR 918's required expenditures in
Years 6-10) would provide only $75 million in revenues -- i.e., all but
75.000 of the 1.2 million claims would be relinquished. If this
estimate is accurate, rentals under HR 918 could be expected to bring
in less than $7.5 million -- $5/acre (after the plan of operation is
approved) X 75,000 claims X 20 acres/claim. Item 2 is unpredictable;
revenues would depend on how many claim holders would elect to
make payments in lieu of performing their diligent development work.
Admin-	These revenue raising proposals have the advantage of providing
istrarion certainty of the race of taxation (e.g., dollars per acre). Compliance
and collection costs would be lower than the establishment of a new
broad-based tax. The proposals would be enforceable, since one
ultimate penalty for noncompliance is revocation of the authorization
to mine on federal lands.
Tax	Who ultimately pays the tax would vary depending on the mineral.
Incidence/ Since many Iocs',-,ble minerals are sold in international markets (e.g.,
Impact	gold), the tax : not be shifted to the consumer and would be
bome by the r. c jcer. The impact of increased rentals, royalties, etc.
on overall economic efficiency would likely be small. However, the
imposition of fees/taxes on mining on federal land may shift some
mining off federal lands and on to private and state lands.
Fairness Raising revenue for an 1AM program from mining on federal land has
the attractiveness of linking the revenue source (mining) to the
purpose of the expenditures (remediation of damage caused by
mining). However, this advantage would be offset if the expenditure
of such funds was not linked to mining problems on the federal lands.
On February 20, 1991, Senator Dale Bumpers (D-AR) introduced his bill, the Mining
Law Reform Act (S. 433), to reform the 1872 General Mining Law. The bill is similar to Rep.
Rahall's in that claimanis could not receive title to the land. In place of diligent development
there would be an annual holding fee. This fee would also increase with the age of the
claim. The amount of the holding fee would be: $5/acre/year for years 1-5; $10/acre/year
for years 6-10; $15/acre/year for years 11-15; and $20/acre/yeai for each year thereafter.
A claim would be valid for twenty years. After that, upon application and
demonstration of bona fide efforts to produce locatable minerals, the Secretary of Interior
could extend the term of the claim for a maximum of five years. The annual holding fee
would be suspended when royalty payments began.
Royalties would be collected on any production of locatable minerals from the claim.

Under the bill, the royalty would be not less than 5 percent of gross income from such
production and in no event would it be less than the applicable holding fee. The bill would
also set up surface use permits for milling, processing or benefkiation activities. There
would be an annual surface use fee of not less than $5/acre. Tide III of the bill would
establish the Hardrock Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund. The fund would be administered
by the Bureau of Land Management and would reclaim abandoned hardrock mines on
federal, state, and private land.
Tax Base/ Receipts from the holding fee, surface use fee, and royalties would be
Rate	split with 33 percent going to the state where the mineral deposits
were located. 34 percent to the federal Treasury and 33 percent to a
new Hardrock Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund.
Revenues In addition to one-third of the receipts from royalties, holding fees and
surface use fees, funding would also come from receipts from mineral
materials sales under the Materials Act of 1947. No revenue estimate
is included for S 433.
Admin-	Same as for HR 918, excepc administration of a royalty collection
istration program would add a complication.
Similar to HR 918.
Similar to HR 918.
Same as for HR 918.
Tax on the Value of Minerals Produced
Unlike the SMCRA abandoned mine land fee which is levied on tonnage produced,
under this scheme the government would levy a tax on the value of production from all
noncoal mining operations.
Tax Base/ The tax base would be the value of minerals produced. The rate of
Rate	taxation could be varied according to the mineral produced.
Revenues The following table is for illustrative purposes only. It shows the
revenue collections from a tax of one-half percent on the value of
production as reported to the Bureau of Mines.

Projected Funds from 0.5% Tax on Mineral Production
(1988 Production Data)
0.5 °/o Tax
Sand 8c Gravel
A tax on the value of minerals would be difficult to administer.
Depending on the point of taxation (e.j\, mine mouth, initial
processing, etc.), there could be numerous taxpayers. Establishing
value at the point of taxation, especially where transactions are not at
arms-lengiLh would be difficult. Compliance costs could be substantial
given the number of small operations.
The incidence of the tax would vary according to the type of mineral
produced. The incidence of the tax on minerals with local markets
(e.g., construction materials) would likely be passed on to consumers.
The tax on minerals with international markets would be absorbed by
the producer and could result in production being shifted offshore.
The effect of such a broad-based tax on economic efficiency and
international competitiveness would vary according to the market for
the mineral and opportunities to substitute other products.
A fixed rate of taxation on the value of all minerals would result in
revenue collections from the tax on some commodities being above or
below the contribution of those commodities to existing 1AM problems.
A variable tax rate based on the minerals previously mined at IAMs
may be more fair but would increase the complexity of tax
ISJ U S Department of Interior. Bureau of Mines, Minerals Yearbook," 1990, pp 5-6

Tax on Lands Disturbed
A tax couJd be levied on the acreage disturbed by mining. The following chart was
generated using 1980 data and shows how such a tax might impact some of the mining
industries. Such a land-based tax will have a greater impact on non-metals, such as sand and
gravel, than on metals mining.
Tax Base/Rate The tax base in this example is the number of acres annually
disturbed by mining, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Mines. The
example tax rate is $2 per acre of disturbed lands. Revenue
collections in the example would be $210 million annually.
Tax on Acres Utilized by Mining and Milling
(1980 Data in Thousands)
Acres	Tax
Utilized153	(S2/Acre)
Copper 2,570	$5,140
Iron Ore 2,040	4,080
Uranium 310	620
Other 4,240	8,480
Subtotal	9,160	18,320
Clays	6,920	13,840
Phosphate Rock 19,420	13,840
Sand & Gravel	38,800	77,600
Stone	27,560	55,120
Other	2,900	5,800
Subtotal	95,600	191,200
TOTAL	104,760	209,520
Admin-	An acreage disturbance tax would be difficult to administer
istrarion	because of uncertainties about how to measure disturbance,
difficulties in ensuring compliance, large collection costs because of
IS3 U.S. Department of Interior, Office of Surface Mining and Enforcement, "An Assessment of the Abandoned Mine Land
Reclamation Program to Determine Whether the Fee Collection Provisions of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of
1977 Should be Renewed and/or Modified," Draft. Feb. I, '989 page ftS.

the number of small mines, and enforcement problems.
Tax	As with the other tax schemes, the incidence of a land disturbance
Incidence/	tax and the effect of the tax on economic efficiency would vary
Impact	according to the character of the market for the mineral and the
availability of substitute products.
Fairness	Finally, there does not appear to be a close relationship between
acreage disturbed by the mining of a certain mineral and the
contribution past mining of such mineral has made to IAM
Tax on Products Using Minerals
A tax could be levied on all products according to the contribution of the mining
sector to the value of such products. Such a tax would apply to imported products and thus
minimize any revenue loss from a tax scheme driving production offshore.
Tax Base/	The tax base would be the wholesale price of all products. The tax
Rate	rate would be established by commodity depending on the
contribution of mining to the value of the product. The following
table shows the percent of value of mineral products in the value of
primary manufacturing.
Percent of Value of Mineral Products
in Value of Primary Manufacturing
f!986 Data)'*
Commodity	Percent of Value
Agricultural	.1
Construction	.6
Paper Products	.4
Chemicals	2.8
Paints	.8
Stone & Clay Products	5.8
Iron & Steel
Manufacturing	3.8
Primary Nonfenous Metals	4.3
Heating, Plumbing	.1
Misc. Electric	.2
Misc. Manufacturing	.1
U.S. Department of Commerce. Bureau of Economic Analysis, "Survey of Current Business," February 1991, Vol. 71, No.2,
pp. 36-41.

Revenues No revenue estimate has been prepared.
Admin-	Administration of such a tax would be very difficult since there is no
isrration existing national sales tax structure upon which such a tax could be
Tax Incidence The tax would be passed on to the consumer in accordance to the
contribution of mining to the value of the products purchased.
As with all taxes there would be some loss of economic efficiency. Unless
products for export were exempted from the tax, such a tax could put
U.S. exports at a competitive disadvantage. There may be problems
associated with international trade agreements with imposing the tax on
The rax would ultimately fall on consumers who were among the
beneficiaries of past mining practices which led to the creation of LAMs.
Tax on Mineral Imports
A tax could be levied on just mineral imports, thereby providing revenues to remediate
LAM problems without damaging the domestic industry.
Tax Base/Rate
In this example, the tax base is the value of mineral imports as
reported by the U.S. Bureau of Mines. For illustrative purposes, the
tax rate is 0.5% of the value of the imports.
Projected Funds from a 0.5 % Tax on Mineral Imports
(1988 Production Data)
0.5 % Tax
Iron & Steel
Gem Stones
,5:> I'.S. Department of Interior, Bureau of Mines, '1988 Minerals Yearbook," 1990, pp. 36-42.

An import tax could be easier to administer than some of the
other taxes since imports are already tracked by the government.
However, such a tax may violate varioui existing international trade
Consumers and foreign producers would pay the tax.
Impact	Since this would be a tax on imports it would favor domestic production
in the U.S., but at a cost to overall economic efficiency. To avoid the tax,
users of imported minerals could choose to import products made from
minerals rather than importing raw minerals.
Fairness There does not appear to be a close relationship between the value of
various mineral imports and the contribution past mining of such minerals
has made to the IAM problem.
Exemption of Remitting from LAM Tax
The exemption of remining from any new IAM tax would encourage remining over the
mining of virgin materials. The imposition of such a tax exemption has the effect of raising the
price of virgin materials while holding constant the price of materials produced by remining.
Effectiveness The primary factors determining the economics of remining are the
quality of the ore, mining costs, and market prices. Exemptions from an
IAM tax will provide only a marginal economic boost to a project.
Costs	The government faces a potential revenue loss if it provides a tax
exemption to remining projects which would have gone forward even in
the absence of such an exemption.
Fairness The incidence of an IAM tax (including an exemption for remining)
would nor necessarily fall on the parries or mining industries responsible
for lAMs. The imposition of an IAM rax may drive some domestic
production offshore for minerals which are sold in world markets (e.g.,
gold, silver).
Legal Issues The mechanics (e.g., point of taxation) of levying a noncoal LAM tax
would be difficult to administer.
History	None.
Time	At best, it would take several years to impose an IAM tax on mining and
thus achieve the benefits of an exemption for remining.

I 2-
4. Title and Subtitle
5. Report Date
7. Author(s)
8. Performing Organization Rept. No
9. Performing Organization Name and Address
Office of Solid Uaste
401 M. Street SV
Washington. DC 20460	
10.	Project/Task/Uork Unit No.
11.	Contract(C) or Grant(G) No.
12. Sponsoring Organization Name and Address
13. Type of Report & Period Covered
I H-
15. Supplementary Notes
16. Abstract (Limit: 200 words)
This' 'volume of the three-volune report outlines the environmental, health and safety problems at JAMS, remediation
f £ ^
technologies, remediation costs, the methodology states used in preparing state reports, and state surmary tables. It
also describes the broad range of policy options for remediation of problems associated with 1AMS.
17. Docunent Analysis a. Descriptors
b. Identifiers/Qpen-Ended Terms
c. COSATI Field/Group
18. AvaiIabiIity Statement
19.	Security Class (This Report)] 21. No. of Pages
20.	Security Class (This Page) | 22. Price
(See ANSI-Z39.18)
OPTIONAL FORM 272 (4-77)
(Formerly NTIS-35)