§ 86.101. Definitions.
The following words and terms, when
used in this subchapter, have the following meanings, unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
- An area of land where human bodies are interred.
Community or institutional building
- A structure other than a public building or an occupied dwelling,
which is used primarily for meetings, gatherings or functions
of local civic organizations or other community groups; functions
as an educational, cultural, historic, religious, scientific,
correctional, mental health or physical health care facility;
or is used for public services, including, but not limited to,
water supply, power generation or sewage treatment.
- Geographic areas containing natural, ecologic, scientific or
esthetic resources that could be damaged or destroyed by surface
mining. Examples include, but are not limited to, valuable habitats
for fish or wildlife, critical habitats for endangered or threatened
species of animals or plants, uncommon geologic formations, National
Natural Landmark sites, areas where mining may cause flooding,
environmental corridors containing a concentration or ecologic
and esthetic features, areas of recreational value due to high
environmental quality and buffer zones adjacent to the boundaries
of areas where surface mining operations are prohibited under
section 4(h) of the Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation
Act (52 P.S. §1396.4(h)).
- Historic or cultural districts, places, structures or objects,
including archaeological and paleontological sites, National Historic
Landmark sites, sites listed or eligible for listing on a State
or National Register of Historic Places, sites having religious
or cultural significance to native Americans or religious groups
or sites for which historic designation is pending.
Natural hazard lands
- Geographic areas in which natural conditions exist which pose,
or as a result of surface mining operations, may pose a threat
to the health, safety or welfare of people, property or the environment,
including areas subject to landslides, cave-ins, severe wind or
soil erosion, frequent flooding, avalanches and areas of unstable
- A structure that is owned by a public agency or used principally
for public business, meetings or other group gatherings.
- An area dedicated or designated by a Federal, State or local
agency for public recreational use, whether or not the use is
limited to certain times or days, including land leased, reserved
or held open to the public because of that use. For the purposes
of this subchapter, local agency shall include nonprofit organizations
owning lands which are dedicated or designated for public recreational
Publicly owned park
- A public park owned by a Federal, State or local governmental
Renewable resource lands
- Aquifers and areas for the recharge of aquifers and other underground
waters, areas for agricultural or silvicultural production of
food and fiber, and grazing lands.
Significant recreational, timber,
economic or other values incompatible with surface mining
- Significant values which could be damaged by, and are not capable
of existing together with, surface mining operations because of
the undesirable effects mining would have on those values, either
on the area included in the permit application or on offsite areas
which could be affected by mining. Values to be evaluated for
their importance include:
(i) Nature recreation, including hiking,
boating, camping, skiing, fishing, hunting or other related outdoor
(ii) Timber management and silviculture.
(iii) Agriculture, aquaculture or production
or other natural, processed or manufactured products which enter
(iv) Scenic, historic, archaeologic,
esthetic, fish, wildlife, plants or cultural interests.
Substantial legal and financial commitments
in a surface mining operation
- Significant investments that have been made prior to January 4,
1977, on the basis of a long-term contract in power plants, railroads,
mineral handling, preparation, extraction or storage facilities
and other capital-intensive activities. Costs of acquiring the
mineral in place or of the right to mine it without an existing
mine are not sufficient commitments, standing alone, to constitute
substantial legal and financial commitments.
Surface mining [activities]
OPERATIONS -- The extraction of coal from the earth
or from waste or stock piles or from pits or banks by removing
the strata or material which overlies or is above or between them
or otherwise exposing and retrieving them from the surface, including,
but not limited to, strip and auger mining, dredging, quarrying
and leaching and surface activity connected with surface or underground
coal mining, including, but not limited to, exploration, site
preparation, entry, tunnel, slope, drift, shaft and borehole drilling
and construction and activities related thereto, coal refuse disposal,
coal processing and preparation facilities and activities involved
in or related to underground coal mining which are conducted on
the surface of the land, produce changes in the land surface,
or disturbs the surface, air or water resources of the area.
§ 86.102. Areas where mining is
prohibited or limited.
Subject to valid existing rights as
defined in §86.1 (relating to definitions), surface mining
[activities] OPERATIONS except those which existed
on August 3, 1977, are not permitted:
(1) On lands within the boundaries of
the National Park System, the National Wildlife Refuge System,
the National System of Trails, the National Wilderness Preservation
System, the Wild and Scenic Rivers System, including study rivers
designated under section 5(a) of the Wild and Scenic River
Act (16 U.S.C.A. § 1276(a)) and National Recreation Areas
designated by act of Congress.
(2) On Federal lands within the boundaries
of a National forest. Surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS
may be permitted on the lands, if the Secretary of the United
States Department of Interior and the Secretary find that there
are no significant recreational, timber, economic or other values
incompatible with surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS
and the surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS and
impacts are incident to an underground coal mine.
(3) Which will adversely affect a publicly-owned
park or a place included on or eligible for inclusion on the National
Register of Historic Places, unless approved jointly by the Department
and the Federal, State or local governmental agency with jurisdiction
over the park or places.
(4) On lands within the State park system.
Surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS may be permitted
if the Department finds that significant land and water conservation
benefits will result when remining of previously mined land is
(5) On lands within State forest picnic
areas, State forest natural areas and State forest wild areas.
Surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS may be permitted
on State forest lands other than picnic areas, natural areas and
wild areas, if the Department finds that one or more of the following
(i) There will be no significant adverse
impact to natural resources including timber, water, wildlife,
recreational and aesthetic values.
(ii) Significant land and water conservation
benefits will result when remining of previously mined lands is
(6) On lands within the game land system
of this Commonwealth. Surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS
may be permitted by the Department if Game Commission consents
and finds that one or more of the following apply:
(i) There will be no significant long-term
adverse impacts to aquatic or terrestrial wildlife populations
and their habitats.
(ii) Significant wildlife habitat and
land and water conservation benefits will result when remining
of previously mined lands is proposed.
(7) On lands within the authorized boundaries
of Pennsylvania Scenic River Systems which have been legislatively
designated as such under the Pennsylvania Scenic Rivers Act (32
P.S. §§ 820.21 - 820.29). Surface mining [activities]
OPERATIONS may be permitted if the department finds
that significant land and water conservation benefits will result
when remining of previously mined lands is proposed, or when the
Department finds that the surface mining [activity] OPERATION
is consistent with te scenic Rivers System designation and will
bot adversely affect the values which the designation is designed
(8) Within 100 feet measured horizontally
of the outside right-of-way line of a public road, except:
(i) For mine access roads or haulage
at the point where they join the right-of-way lines.
(ii) When the Department, with concurrence
of the agency with jurisdiction over the road, allows the public
road to be relocated or the area affected to be within 100 feet
of the road, after the following:
(A) Public notice and opportunity for
a public hearing in accordance with §86.103(c) (relating
(B) Making a written finding that the
interest of the affected public and landowners will be protected.
(9) Within 300 feet measured horizontally
from an occupied dwelling, unless the only part of the mining
operations which is within 300 feet of the dwelling is a haul
road or access road which connects with an existing public road
on the side of the public road opposite the dwelling or unless
the current owner thereof has provided a written waiver consenting
to surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS closer
than 300 feet. The waiver shall be knowingly made and separate
from a lease or deed unless the lease or deed contains an explicit
waiver from the current owner.
(10) Within 300 feet measured horizontally
of a public building, school, church, community or institutional
building or public park.
(11) Within 100 feet measured horizontally
of a cemetery.
(12) Within 100 feet measured horizontally
of the bank of a perennial or intermittent stream. The Department
may grant a variance from this distance requirement if the operator
demonstrates beyond a reasonable doubt that there will be no adverse
hydrologic impacts, water quality impacts or other environmental
resources impacts as a result of the variance. The variance will
be issued as a written order specifying the methods and techniques
that shall be employed to prevent adverse impacts. Prior to granting
a variance, the operator is required to give public notice of
application thereof in two newspapers of general circulation in
the area once a week for 2 successive weeks. If a person files
an exception to the proposed variance within 20 days of the last
publication thereof, the department will conduct a public hearing
with respect thereto. The Department will also consider information
or comments submitted by the Fish and Boat Commission prior to
taking action on a variance request.
(a) Upon receipt of a complete permit
application for surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS
the Department will review the application to determine whether
the surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS are limited
or prohibited under § 86.102 (relating to areas where mining
is prohibited or limited) on the lands which would be disturbed
by the proposed operation.
(b) If the proposed surface mining [activities]
OPERATIONS would include Federal lands within the boundaries
of a National forest, and the applicant seeks a determination
that mining is permissible under § 86.102(2), the applicant
shall submit a permit application to the Regional Director of
the Office of Surface Mine Reclamation and enforcement and the
Department for processing under 30 CFR Chapter 7 Subchapter D
(relating to Federal lands program). Approval from the Director
is required before A permit may be issued by the
(c) If the proposed surface mining [activities]
OPERATIONS are to be conducted within 100 feet measured
horizontally of the outside right-of-way line of a public road
- except where mine access road or haulage roads join the right-of-way
line - or if the applicant proposes to relocated a public road,
the Department will:
(1) Require the applicant to obtain
necessary approvals of the authority with jurisdiction over the
(2) Provide notice in a newspaper of
general circulation in the affected locale of a public hearing,
if one has been requested, at least 2 weeks before the hearing.
(3) Insure that an opportunity for a
public hearing has been afforded in the locality of the proposed
mining operations, at which members of the public may participate,
for the purpose of determining whether the interests of the public
and affected landowners will be protected.
(4) Review the information received
at the public hearing, if one has been held, and the findings
of applicable State and local agencies as to whether the interests
of the public and affected landowners will be protected from the
proposed mining operations.
(d) When the proposed surface mining
[activities] OPERATIONS would be conducted within
300 feet measured horizontally of any occupied dwelling, the applicant
shall submit with the application a written waiver from the current
owner of the dwelling, consenting to the [activities] OPERATIONS
within a closer distance of the dwelling as specified in the waiver.
The waiver shall be knowingly made and separate from a lease
or deed unless the lease or deed contains an explicit waiver from
the current owner.
(e) When the proposed surface mining
[activities] OPERATIONS may adversely affect a public
park or a place included on the National Register of Historic
Places, the Department will transmit to the Federal, State or
local agencies with jurisdiction over, or a statutory or regulatory
responsibility for, the park or historic place a copy of the completed
permit application containing the following:
(1) A request for that agency`s approval
or disapproval of the activities.
(2) A notice to the appropriate agency
that it shall respond within 30 days from receipt of the request.
(f) If the Department determines that
the proposed SURFACE mining [activities] OPERATIONS
are not prohibited under §86.102, it may nevertheless, pursuant
to appropriate petitions, designate the lands as unsuitable for
all or certain types of surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS
under §§86.121 - 86.129.
§ 86.121. Areas designated unsuitable
for SURFACE mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS.
(a) The requirements of this section
and §§ 86.12286.129 do not apply to permit
areas on which surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS
were being conducted on August 3, 1977, or are being conducted
under a permit issued under the Surface Mining Conservation and
Reclamation Act (52 P. S. §§ 1396.11396.31),
or if substantial legal and financial commitments as defined by
the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, United
States Department of the Interior under section 522 of the Surface
Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (30 U.S.C.A. §
1272) if the [activities] OPERATIONS were in existence
prior to January 4, 1977.
(b) No permits for surface mining
[ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS will be issued in areas
designated unsuitable under this subchapter. The permits may
be issued in areas where the applicant has prior substantial legal
and financial commitments in a surface mining [activity] OPERATIONS
if the applicant establishes the existence of the commitments
to the satisfaction of the Department. In considering the permit
applications in designated areas, the Department will impose terms
and conditions to preserve and protect the applicable values and
uses of the area.
§ 86.122. Criteria for designating
lands as unsuitable.
(a) Upon petition, an area shall be
designated as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface mining
[ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS if the Department
determines that reclamation is not technologically and economically
(b) Upon petition, an area may be designated
as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface mining [ACTIVITIES]
OPERATIONS if the surface mining [ACTIVITIES]
(1) Be incompatible with existing Commonwealth
or local [GOVERNMENT] land use plans or programs.
[ESTABLISHED TO PROTECT A NATURAL RESOURCE FROM ALL TYPES
OF LAND USE ACTIVITIES THAT WOULD NEGATIVELY AFFECT THE NATURAL
RESOURCE. THESE NATURAL RESOURCES INCLUDE, BUT ARE NOT LIMITED
TO, PRIME FARMLAND, STREAM BUFFER ZONES, STORM WATER MANAGEMENT
AREAS, WETLANDS AND PUBLIC RECREATION AREAS.]
(2) Affect fragile or historic lands
in which the surface mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS
could result in significant damage to important historic, cultural,
scientific or esthetic values or natural systems. [PROVIDED
THAT THE FRAGILE OR HISTORIC LANDS ARE UNDER THE OWNERSHIP OR
CONTROL OF A GOVERNMENT AGENCY OR A NONPROFIT ENTITY WHOSE PURPOSE
IS THE PRESERVATION OF THE RESOURCE OR THERE IS A LEGAL MECHANISM
IN PLACE TO ENSURE THAT THE RESOURCE IS PROTECTED FROM ALL ACTIVITIES
THAT COULD ADVERSELY AFFECT THEM.]
(3) Affect renewable resource lands
in which the surface mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS
could result in a substantial loss or reduction of long-range
productivity of[:] [water supply or of food or
[(i) WATER SUPPLIES, AND LANDS
WHICH INCLUDE AQUIFERS AND AQUIFER RECHARGE AREAS FOR WHICH THERE
IS NO SUITABLE REPLACEMENT WATER SUPPLY SOURCE, OR;
(ii) FOOD OR FIBER PRODUCTS RESULTING
FROM THE PERMANENT LOSS OF PRIME FARMLAND SOILS ON PROPERTIES
WHICH INCLUDE TITLE OR DEED RESTRICTIONS OR WHERE LOCAL GOVERNMENT
LAND USE POLICY PROHIBITS CONVERSION OF FARMLAND TO OTHER USES.]
(4) Affect natural hazard lands in which
the surface mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS
could substantially endanger life and property, the lands to include
areas subject to frequent flooding and areas of unstable geology.
§ 86.123. Procedures: petitions.
(a) A person who has an interest which
is, or may be, adversely affected has the right to petition the
Department to have an area designated as unsuitable for surface
mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS or to have
an existing designation terminated.
(b) Under the procedures in this section,
the Department may initiate proceedings seeking to have an area
designated as unsuitable for surface mining [ACTIVITIES]
OPERATIONS or to have the designation terminated.
(c) The petitioner shall provide the
following information to the Department's Bureau of Mining and
Reclamation (Bureau) on forms developed by that Bureau:
(1) The location and approximate size
of the area covered by the petition, utilizing property or boundary
lines or landmarks, and including a 7 1/2-minute topographic map
published by the United States Geological Survey with the perimeter
of the area shown thereon.
(2) Allegations of facts and supporting
evidence which would tend to establish that the areas are unsuitable
for all or certain types of surface mining [ACTIVITIES]
OPERATIONS assuming that contemporary mining practices
required under applicable regulatory practices would be followed
if the area were to be mined.
(3) A description of how mining of the
area has affected or may adversely affect people, land, air, water
or other resources.
(4) The petitioner's name, address,
telephone number and notarized signature.
(5) Identification of the petitioner's
interest which is or may be adversely affected.
(d) A person who has an interest which
is or may be adversely affected may petition to terminate a designation.
The petition shall contain:
(1) The location and size of the area
covered by the petition, including a 7 1/2-minute topographic
map published by the United States Geologic Survey with the perimeters
of the area shown thereon.
(2) Allegations of newly discovered
facts, with newly discovered supporting evidence, not contained
in the record of the proceeding in which the area was designated
unsuitable, and which were unavailable at that time, which evidence
would tend to establish the statements or allegations, and which
statements or allegations indicate that the designation should
be terminated based on one or more of the following:
(i) The nature or abundance of the
protected resource or condition or other basis of the designation
if the designation was based on criteria found in §86.122(b)
(relating to criteria for designating lands as unsuitable).
(ii) Reclamation now being technologically
and economically feasible, if the designation was based on the
criteria found in §86.122(a)
(iii) The resources or condition not
being affected by surface mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS,
or in the case of land use plans, not being incompatible with
surface mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS during
and after mining, if the designation was based on the criteria
found in § 86.122(b).
(3) The petitioner's name, address and
(4) Identification of the petitioner's
interest which is or may be adversely affected by the continuation
of the designation.
§ 86.124. Procedures: initial
processing, recordkeeping and notification requirements.
(a) Within 30 days of receipt of a petition, the Department will notify the
petitioner by certified mail whether
or not the petition is complete as required by § 86.123
(relating to procedures: petitions). If the 30-day requirement
of this subsection cannot be met due to the staff limitations
of the Department, the Department may process the petitions in
accordance with the priority system authorized by subsection (b)(2).
Within this 30-day period, the Department will also notify an
applicant with pending surface mining permit applications in the
area covered by the petition.
(1) The Department will determine whether
identified coal resources exist in the area covered by the petition.
If the Department finds there are not identified coal resources
in that area, it may return the petition to the petitioner with
a statement of the findings.
(2) The Department may reject petitions
for designations or terminations of designations which are frivolous.
Once the requirements of § 86.123 are met, no party may
bear a burden of proof, but each accepted petition shall be considered
and acted upon by the Department under the procedures of this
(3) When considering a petition for
an area which was previously and unsuccessfully proposed for designation,
the Department will determine if the new petition presents new
allegations of fact. If the petition does not contain new allegations
of fact, the Department will refuse to consider the petition and
may return the petition to the petitioner, with a statement of
its findings and a reference to the record of the previous designation
proceedings where the facts were considered.
(4) If the Department determines that
the petition is frivolous, it will return the petition to the
petitioner, with a written statement of the reasons for the determination.
If the petition is incomplete, the Department will indicate the
categories of information needed to make the petition complete.
The Department will hold the incomplete petition until the
petitioner has been given 30 days to make the application complete.
(5) The Department will notify the person
who submits a petition of an application for a permit received
which proposes to include an area covered by the petition.
(6) The Department will not issue permits
for surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS in areas
included within a petition for a designation under § 86.122
(relating to criteria for designating lands as unsuitable) if
the petition is received by the Department prior to the close
of the public comment period for the permit, unless the permit
applicant establishes prior substantial legal and financial commitments
in a surface mining operation within the proposed permit area.
A petition received after the close of the public comment period
on a permit application relating to the same permit area will
not prevent the Department from issuing a decision on that permit
application. For the purpose of this section, "close of
the public comment period" means at the close of a public
hearing held on the permit, or, if no hearing is held, at the
close of the comment period following public notice of the permit
application. Once a petition has been returned to the petitioner
under this subchapter, the Department may proceed to issue a decision
on a permit application received for mining in the area included
within the petition.
(b) Within 3 weeks after the determination
that a petition is complete, the Department will send notice of
receipt of the petition to, and request submissions of relevant
information from, other interested governmental agencies, the
petitioner, intervenors and other persons known to the Department
to own or have an interest in the property.
(1) Within 3 weeks after the determination
that a petition is complete, the Department will notify the general
public of the receipt of the petition and request submissions
of relevant information by a newspaper advertisement placed once
a week for 2 consecutive weeks in the locale of the area covered
by the petition, in the newspaper of largest circulation in the
region, and in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
(2) The Department may establish a priority
system to decide the order in which petitions or classes of petitions
submitted under this section will be processed. A high priority
will be given to petitions which include areas where surface mining
permit applications are pending.
(c) Until 3 days before the EQB holds
a hearing under § 86.125 (relating to procedures: hearing
requirements), a person may become an intervenor in the proceeding
by filing allegations of facts, supporting evidence, a short statement
identifying the petition to which the allegations pertain, a request
for intervenor status, and name, address and telephone number.
(d) Beginning immediately after a complete
petition is filed, the Department will compile and maintain a
record consisting of documents relating to the petition filed
with or prepared by the Department. The Department will make
the record available for public inspection, free of charge and
copying at reasonable cost, during normal business hours at the
Bureau of Mining and Reclamation district office in the county
or multicounty area in which the land petitioned is located, and
at the main office of the Department.
(e) Prior to designating land areas
unsuitable for surface mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS,
the Department will prepare a detailed statement, using existing
and available information on the potential resources of the area,
the demand for resources, and the impact of the designation on
the environment, the economy and the supply of coal.
(f) The Department will prepare a recommendation
in the form of a proposed rulemaking on each complete petition
received under this section and submit it to the EQB as a proposed
regulation under this section.
§ 86.125. Procedures: hearing
(a) Within 10 months of the receipt
of a complete petition, the EQB will hold a public hearing in
the locality of the area covered by the petition. If all petitioners
and intervenors agree, the hearing need not be held. The hearing
shall be legislative and fact-finding in nature, without cross
examination of witnesses. The EQB will make a verbatim transcript
of the hearing.
(b) The EQB will give notice of the
date, time and location of the hearing to:
(1) Local, State and Federal agencies
which may have an interest in the decision on the petition.
(2) The petitioner and the intervenors.
(3) A person with an ownership or other
interest made known to the Department in the area covered by the
(4) Notice of the hearing shall be sent
by first class mail and postmarked not less than 30 days before
the scheduled date of the hearing.
(c) The EQB will notify the general
public of the date, time and location of the hearing by placing
a newspaper advertisement once a week for 2 consecutive weeks
in the locale of the area covered by the petition and once during
the week prior to the scheduled date of the public hearing. The
consecutive weekly advertisement must begin between 4 and 5 weeks
before the scheduled date of the public hearing.
(d) The EQB may consolidate in a single
hearing the hearings required for each of several petitions which
relate to areas in the same locale.
(e) The EQB will receive and consider
written comments on the petition for a period of 15 days after
the conclusion of the public hearing. In the event no hearing
is to be held on a petition, the comments may be received and
considered for a period of 45 days following publication of [the
fact] A NOTICE that there will be no public hearing. Within
60 days of the close of the public comment period, the EQB will
make a final written decision.
(f) In the event that all petitioners and intervenors so stipulate, the petition
may be withdrawn from consideration
prior to the hearing.
§ 86.126. Procedures: decision.
(a) In reaching its decision on the
proposed rule, the EQB will consider:
(1) The information contained in the
data base and inventory system.
(2) Information provided by other governmental
(3) The detailed statement prepared
under § 86.124(e) (relating to procedures: initial processing,
recordkeeping and notification requirements).
(4) Oral and written testimony received
during and written testimony received subsequent to public hearing.
(5) The recommendations of the Department.
(b) A final written decision in the
form of a regulation will be issued by the EQB within 60 days
following the public hearing, including a statement of reasons
for the decision. The EQB will promptly send the decision by
certified mail to the petitioner, intervenors, and to the Regional
Director of the Office of Surface Mine Reclamation and Enforcement,
and shall deposit and publish its decision as a regulation in
the manner required by the act of July 31, 1968 (P. L. 769, No.
240) (45 P. S. §§ 1102, 12011208 and 1602);
45 Pa.C.S. §§ 501907; and sections 3 and
4 of the act of July 9, 1976 (P. L. 877, No. 160) (45 Pa.Sp. Pamph.
84 page 35).
§ 86.127. Data base and inventory
(a) The Department will expeditiously
develop a data base and inventory system which will permit evaluation
of whether reclamation is feasible in areas covered by petitions.
(b) The Department will include in the
system information relevant to the criteria in § 86.122 (relating
to criteria for designating lands as unsuitable), including, but
not limited to, information received from the United States Fish
and Wildlife Service, [the United States Heritage Conservation
and Recreation Service,] the State Historic Preservation Office,
the PENNSYLVANIA Fish AND BOAT Commission, the Department's
Scenic Rivers Program, the PENNSYLVANIA Game Commission,
the Department of Community Affairs, private conservancies and
the agency administering section 127 of the Clean Air Act (42
U.S.C.A. § 7470).
(c) The Department will review and update
the data base and inventory system as information becomes available:
(1) On potential mineral resources of
this Commonwealth, demand of the resources, the environment, the
economy and the supply of minerals sufficient to enable the Department
to prepare the statements required by § 86.124(e) (relating
to procedures: initial processing, recordkeeping and notification
(2) From petitions, publications, experiments,
permit applications, mining and reclamation operations and other
§ 86.128. Public information.
The Department will:
(1) Make the information and data base
system developed under § 86.127 (relating to data base and
inventory system requirements) available to the public for inspection
free of charge and for copying at reasonable cost during established
(2) Provide information to the public
on the petition procedures necessary to have an area designated
as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface [coal] mining
[operations] [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS or to
have designations terminated and describe how the inventory and
data base system can be used.
(3) Maintain a map of areas designated
as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface mining [operations]
(4) Make available to persons information
within its control regarding designation or terminations, including
mineral or elemental content which is potentially toxic in the
environment. Other information which is properly classified as
proprietary or confidential will be protected by the Department
as may be required by law.
§ 86.129. Coal exploration.
The submission of a petition to [declare]
DESIGNATE an area unsuitable for all or certain types of
surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS or designation
of an area as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface mining
[activities] OPERATIONS under this chapter does
not prohibit coal exploration operations in the area. Coal exploration
may not be conducted on an area designated as unsuitable for SURFACE
mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS or where a
petition to designate an area unsuitable for SURFACE mining
[ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS has been received
by the Department in accordance with this chapter unless the exploration
is consistent with the designation or the purposes of the submitted
petition and will be conducted to preserve and protect the applicable
values and uses of the area. Exploration may not be conducted
unless the Department has been notified in advance and has issued
written approval for the exploration under §86.133(f) (relating
to general requirements). Approval will not be issued unless
the person seeking the approval has described the nature and extent
of the proposed [activity] OPERATION, and has described
in detail the measures to be employed to prevent adverse effects.
§ 86.130. Areas designated as
unsuitable for mining.
(a) Under the criteria and procedures
in §§ 86.12186.129, the EQB has designated
the areas described in subsection (b) as unsuitable for ALL
OR CERTAIN TYPES OF surface [coal] mining [ACTIVITIES]
(b) The following is a list of descriptions
of areas which are unsuitable for ALL OR CERTAIN TYPES OF
surface [coal] mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS
and where [no] ALL OR CERTAIN TYPES OF surface [coal] mining
[operations] [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS will
NOT be permitted:
(1) The tract of approximately 233 acres
in Blacklick Township, Cambria County, described as follows:
Beginning at the northwest corner of
the land owned by the Griffithtown Water Association and proceeding
to the southwest corner, then easterly towards the southeast corner
of the property and continuing in the same easterly direction
to a point located 100 feet horizontal distance west of the Lower
Freeport outcrop; then continuing in a southerly direction, remaining
100 feet from and paralleling the Lower Freeport outcrop as the
outcrop proceeds easterly to intersect the 2,040 foot elevation
contour; then along a straight line extending in a northeasterly
direction intersecting the 2,282-foot elevation point and continuing
to US 422; then west along US 422 to an intersection formed by
a road, driveway or farmlane approaching US 422 from the north
and located approximately 1.86 miles east of the junction of US
422 and Pa. Route 271 in Belsano; then continuing southwesterly
in a straight line to the northwest corner of the Griffithtown
Water Association property.
(2) The surface area overlying surface
mineable coal reserves in a tract of approximately 11,200 acres
in Rush Township, Centre County, which tract is described as follows:
The surface water drainage basin of
Cold Stream upstream from the mouth of Tomtit Run, including the
surface water drainage basins of all tributaries to Cold Stream
upstream from and including Tomtit Run except for the surface
water drainage of a tributary known locally as Big Spring Run
that enters Cold Stream from the west approximately 500 feet upstream
from the Stony Point Road (Township Road 600) bridge over Cold
(3) The tract of approximately 119 acres in Logan Township, Blair County and
Gallitzin Township, Cambria County within
the Mill Run watershed, that is underlain by surface mineable
coal reserves, and that has not been previously disturbed by surface
or deep mining. The tract is more particularly described as follows:
Beginning at the summit of a hill in
the northwest corner of the Mill Run-Little Laurel Run watershed
divide, southwest of the village of Buckhorn on or near the Cambria-Blair
County line, and being at the eastern edge of the previously surface
mined area; then along the watershed divide in a northeasterly
direction for a distance of approximately 2,500 feet to the point
of intersection of the watershed divide with the Mercer coal seam
outcrop; then proceeding in a southeasterly and southerly direction
along the Mercer coal outcrop, and running roughly parallel to
and 100 to 200 feet easterly of the old Louden deep mine railroad
grade, for a distance of approximately 5,500 feet to the northern
terminus of the Louden deep mine, then proceeding westerly and
northwesterly along the edge of the Louden deep mine, exclusive
of an approximately 2-acre ungraded surface mine, to its intersection
with the toe of spoil of the previously surface mined area; then
in a northwesterly direction along the spoil banks remaining from
previous surface mining activity a distance of approximately 3,800
feet to the summit of the hill, being the place of beginning.
(4) The surface mineable coal reserves
in a tract of approximately 5,600 acres in Rush, Centre County,
which tract is the surface water drainage basin of Black Bear
(5) The surface mineable coal reserves
in the surface water drainage basin of Powell Run that are situated
east of Pa. Route 865, which tract is located in Reade Township,
Cambria County and Antis Township, Blair County.
(6) The surface mineable coal reserve
in the surface water drainage basin of Byrnes Run, which tract
is located in Jay and Fox Townships, Elk County.
(7) The surface mineable coal reserves
of the Lower Kittanning, Clarion No. 1, Clarion No. 2 and Mercer
coal seams in the surface water drainage basin of the upper portion
of Little Muddy Run located above the Janesville Dam, which tract
is located in Gulich Township, Clearfield County and Reade Township,
Cambria County; except that the surface mineable coal reserves
of the four designated seams, located in the recharge area for
identified pre-existing pollutional discharges to Little Muddy
Run are not designated unsuitable for surface mining [ACTIVITIES]
OPERATIONS authorized under Chapter 87 Subchapter F
(relating to surface coal mines: minimum requirements for remining
areas with pollutional discharges) which governs the remining
of areas having pre-existing pollutional discharges.
(8) The surface mineable coal reserves
in the surface water drainage basin of Rogues Harbor Run, which
tract is in Chest Township, Clearfield County, and Chest Township,
Cambria County, except Upper Freeport coal within that tract.
(9) The tract of approximately 525 acres
in Elder Township, Cambria County, described as follows:
Beginning at the northern edge of a
raw water storage tank located approximately 2,000 feet south
of Township Route 551 and 2,150 feet west of State Route 36; then
proceeding in a northeasterly direction, intersecting the Borough
of Hastings Water Authority access road at a point approximately
1,450 feet from the access road's junction with Township Route
551; then continuing due north, intersecting Township Route 551
at a property, fence or tree line located approximately 1,250
FEET west of the junction of Township Route 551 and State
Route 36; then north along the property, fence or tree line to
a point located on Legislative Route 221 approximately 1,100 feet
west of State Route 36 in St. Boniface; then continuing in a southeasterly
direction to the junction of State Route 36 and Legislative Route
11056; then along Legislative Route 11056 to a point approximately
1,300 feet east of State Route 36; then continuing south along
a property, fence or tree line to another property, fence or tree
line that is approximately 475 feet south of Legislative Route
11056; then 575 feet due west along this property, fence or tree
line to a point located approximately 350 feet east of State Route
36; then due south to meet State Route 36 at its junction with
a private road, driveway or farm lane approaching State Route
36 from the east, located approximately 950 feet south of the
junction of Township Route 551 and State Route 36; then south
along State Route 36 for approximately 900 feet to a tree, fence
or property line; then along the line, intersecting the Laurel
Hill anticline axis at a point approximately 1,575 feet due east
of State Route 36; then south along the anticlinal axis (which
trends approximately N 40o E) intersecting State Route 36 approximately
625 feet north of the junction of Legislative Routes 221 and 11077
and intersecting Legislative Route 11076 approximately 600 feet
north of its junction with Legislative Routes 221 and 11067 for
6,800 feet to a point approximating the edge of an Upper Kittanning
underground coal mine complex known as the Pardee No. 29; then
continuing in the same southwesterly direction to a point located
200 feet horizontal distance southwest of the Pardee No. 29 Mine
complex; then proceeding in a northerly direction remaining 200
feet from and paralleling the edge of the Pardee No. 29 Mine complex
for approximately 4,250 feet to a point that is approximately
200 feet horizontal distance west of the Upper Kittanning coal
outcrop (intersecting an unnamed tributary to a farm pond located
approximately 3,300 feet due south of Township Route 551 and 3,300
feet due west of State Route 36); then continuing north, remaining
200 feet from and parallel to the coal outcrop to a property,
fence or tree line located approximately 1,820 feet south of Township
Route 551; then due east along the line to the northwest corner
of the land owned by the Borough of Hastings; then returning to
the point of origin.
(10) The tract of 527 acres of surface
mineable coal reserves in the southern surface water drainage
basin of North Fork Tangascootack Creek watershed. The 527 acres
encompass the Mercer coal crop line to the southern watershed
divide of the North Fork Tangascootack Creek watershed, which
tract is located in Bald Eagle, Grugan and Beech Creek Townships,
(11) The surface mineable coals within
the Montgomery Creek and Moose Creek watersheds upstream of the
Clearfield Municipal Authority's public water supply reservoir
dams. The two tracts are located in parts of Lawrence, Pike and
Pine Townships, Clearfield County.
(12) The surface mineable coal reserves
in the surface water drainage basins of Rankin Hollow Run and
the East Fork Brewster Hollow Run, tributaries of Sixmile Run,
upstream of the water supplies for the Coaldale Borough-Six Mile
Run Area Water Corporation. The two tracts, totalling approximately
525 acres, are located in Broad Top Township, Bedford County.
(13) The surface mineable coal reserves
of the Lower Kittanning, Clarion and Mercer coals in the surface
water drainage basin of Bells Gap Run, which tract is located
in Antis and [Logal] LOGAN Townships, Blair County and
Dean and Reade Townships, Cambria County; except that the surface
mineable coal reserves of the three designated seams are not designated
unsuitable for surface [coal] mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS
in the following areas:
(i) A tract of approximately 41 acres
of abandoned mine lands located northwest of the town of Highland
Fling, said tract being described as follows:
Beginning at the point where Township
Route 502 intersects the surface water drainage divide between
Tubb Run and Brubaker Run approximately 750 feet northwest of
the intersection of Township Route 502 and State Route 1016; then
proceeding due east, to a point on State Route 1016 approximately
475 feet north-northeast of the intersection of State Route 1016
and Township Route 502; then continuing to a point approximately
2250 feet north along State Route 1016; then due west to a point
on the surface water drainage divide between Tubb Run and Brubaker
Run approximately 2800 feet north-northwest of the intersection
of Township Route 502 and State Route 1016; then in a southerly
direction along the said surface water drainage divide to the
point of origin.
(ii) The permit areas of Cambria Coal
Company SMP # 11783035, Cambria Coal Company SMP # 11823006, Swistock
Associates Coal Corp. MDP # 4278BC10, E. P. Bender Coal Co. SMP
# 11793025, and Benjamin Coal Company MDP # 4278SM2, in accordance
with § 86.121(a) (relating to areas designated unsuitable
(14) The surface mineable coal reserves
within the Goss Run watershed upstream of the Brisbin Dam, including
a small tract of land within the watershed of the West Tributary
to Goss Run, a total of approximately 555 acres, are designated
unsuitable for all types of surface mining [activities] OPERATIONS.
This includes a land area beginning at the breast of the Brisbin
Dam, thence due southwest to Pa. Route 153, thence north along
the centerline of Pa. Route 153 to the intersection of Pa. Route
153 with township route T-657, thence north along the watershed
divide between the Brisbin Dam drainage and the West Tributary
drainage to a point at the intersection of the Goss Run and Little
Beaver Run watershed divide, thence southwest along the Goss Run
and Little Beaver Run watershed divide to a point at the intersection
of the Brisbin Dam drainage divide, thence southwest along the
Brisbin Dam drainage divide to the point of beginning; except
that the surface mineable coal reserves are not designated unsuitable
for SURFACE mining [ACTIVITIES] OPERATIONS
in the following areas:
The permit areas of the James I. Cowfer
Contracting, Inc. SMP 17663037 and James I. Cowfer Contracting,
Inc. SMP 17820152, in accordance with § 86.121(a).
(15) The surface mineable coal reserves
within the entire Paddy Run watershed, all surface mineable coal
reserves within the Drury Run watershed occurring upstream of
the Drury Run reservoir, and all surface mineable coals within
the Drury Run watershed which occur within the Woodley Draft sub-basin
and within the Slab Hollow drainage of the Stony Run sub-basin.
These areas are located in Chapman, Leidy and Noyes Townships,
(16) The surface mineable coal reserves
of the Lower Kittanning, Clarion and Brookville coals in the surface
water drainage basin of Laurel Run, which tract is located in
Jackson, West Taylor and Middle Taylor Townships, Cambria County.