Pennsylvania to use 30% of the AML fund for water restoration

Sun, Jun 22nd 2008, 10:39. Filed under Policy News.

The Post-Gazette reports that Pennsylvania is planning to use the full 30% of the AML Fund set-aside for mine drainage.

The state Department of Environmental Protection has committed to spend almost a third of the $1.4 billion in federal mine funding it expects to receive in the next 15 years on abandoned mine drainage treatment projects.

The Friday announcement and accompanying 28-page position statement mark a policy change by the DEP, which had previously said the money from the federal Abandoned Mine Lands Fund, collected from coal sale royalties, would first be used to fix 5,100 of the most dangerous abandoned mine lands.

It means that more than $400 million will likely be available for cleanup of mine drainage that has polluted more than 4,600 miles of the state's streams and rivers.

In 2006, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy helped lead a coalition that achieved reauthorization of the federal Abandoned Mineland Fund.

Full news story: "State to spend $400 million on mine drainage"
DEP report (PDF)