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Interior Dept. provides $291 million to clean up, repurpose coal mines

Mikayla Burns

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U.S. Acting Secretary of the of the Interior David Bernhardt announced on March 19 that this year’s grants from the Abandoned Mine Land Reclamation will award over $291 million for mine reclaiming and repurposing efforts.

The AML grants are funded by a fee based on coal produced in the U.S. and assist in eliminating points of pollution and other dangerous areas due to past coal mining in the areas. Projects funded by the AML grants have closed mine shafts, restored water supplies damaged by mining, cleaned up acid mine damage and much more.

“These grants are a great example of Interior partnering with states, tribes and local governments to provide resources for conservation efforts and infrastructure and public safety improvements, like fixing embankments, stabilizing land above underground mines and restoring streams,” Bernhardt said. “The investment we’re making back into coal country helps protect people, land, water and property and enhances the lives of local citizens.”
The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation Enforcement provides the grants to AML to be given to 25 coal-producing states and three tribes, all have been determined eligible by a formula mandated by Congress on their past and present coal production.

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