THE WATERSHED RESTORATION PLAN
In order to clean up streams from abandoned mine drainage (AMD) it is important to find out where the actual problem areas are located. This is known as a watershed assessment. Once all of the problem areas within a watershed are known, a restoration plan is written that lists the steps needed to clean-up the stream. The following gives a brief outline of the watershed assessment and restoration plan development process.
1). Research Background Data. Some examples:
- Mining permits from DEP District Mining Offices
- Operation Scarlift Reports
- PA Fish and Boat Commission reports and studies
- PA DEP Unsuitable For Mining (UFM) studies
- Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) reports
- Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) and Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) studies
- DEP Regional Office archives
2). Stream Investigation (Reconnaissance) is completed.
3). Data Collection
5). Analyze Data & Prioritize AMD Sites. Some criteria that are used:
- Must be able to get large construction equipment into the site and landowner must be willing to allow treatment system to be built
- The type of treatment system must be able to fix the problem
- Cost to build the system.
- Length of stream that will no longer be polluted due to building treatment system
- Must be enough room to build treatment system
- The steps needed to keep system working and fixing problems that may occur need to be identified (Operation and Maintenance)
After a restoration plan is complete, it is time to seek grants and other sources of funding to start building the treatment systems listed in the plan.