Mining and Mining Claims
Requirements for mining operations
(1)Mining operations shall be undertaken in a manner that minimizes environmental damage through the use of the best available, practicable and necessary technology to ensure compliance with environmental standards.
(2)Protection measures for fish and wildlife shall be consistent with policies of the State Department of Fish and Wildlife, including:
(a)Protective measures to maintain an objective of zero wildlife mortality. All chemical processing solutions and associated waste water shall be covered or contained to preclude access by wildlife or maintained in a condition that is not harmful to wildlife.
(b)On-site and off-site mitigation ensuring that there is no overall net loss of habitat value.
(c)No loss of existing critical habitat of any state or federally listed threatened or endangered species.
(d)Fish and wildlife mortality shall be reported in accordance with a monitoring and reporting plan approved by the State Department of Fish and Wildlife.
(e)The State Department of Fish and Wildlife shall establish by rule standards for review of a proposed mining operation for the purpose of developing conditions for fish and wildlife habitat protection that satisfy the terms of this section for inclusion in a consolidated permit by the State Department of Geology and Mineral Industries.
(3)Surface reclamation of a mine site shall:
(a)Ensure protection of human health and safety, as well as that of livestock, fish and wildlife;
(b)Ensure environmental protection;
(c)Require certification to the operator, by the State Department of Fish and Wildlife and the State Department of Agriculture, that a self-sustaining ecosystem, comparable to undamaged ecosystems in the area, has been established in satisfaction of the operator’s habitat restoration obligations; and
(d)Include backfilling or partial backfilling as determined on a case-by-case basis by the State Department of Geology and Mineral Industries when necessary to achieve reclamation objectives that cannot be achieved through other mitigation activities. [1991 c.735 §4; 2003 c.14 §341; 2007 c.318 §25; 2013 c.371 §9]
Atty. Gen. Opinions
Power of Department of Environmental Quality to regulate mining activities and recovery of oil and geothermal activities, (1972) Vol 35, p 1100
Law Review Citations
4 EL 370 (1974)