Mountaintop Mining Consequences

  title={Mountaintop Mining Consequences},
  author={Margaret A Palmer and Emily S. Bernhardt and William H. Schlesinger and Keith N. Eshleman and Efi Foufoula‐Georgiou and Michael S Hendryx and A. Dennis Lemly and Gene E. Likens and Orie L. Loucks and Mary E. Power and P. Signe White and Peter R. Wilcock},
  pages={148 - 149}
Damage to ecosystems and threats to human health and the lack of effective mitigation require new approaches to mining regulation. There has been a global, 30-year increase in surface mining (1), which is now the dominant driver of land-use change in the central Appalachian ecoregion of the United States (2). One major form of such mining, mountaintop mining with valley fills (MTM/VF) (3), is widespread throughout eastern Kentucky, West Virginia (WV), and southwestern Virginia. Upper elevation… Expand
The environmental costs of mountaintop mining valley fill operations for aquatic ecosystems of the Central Appalachians
There is, to date, no evidence to suggest that the extensive chemical and hydrologic alterations of streams by MTVF can be offset or reversed by currently required reclamation and mitigation practices. Expand
Mountaintop Removal Mining Threatens the Survival and Recovery of Imperiled Species
The results demonstrate that mining has downstream effects that must be considered under environmental law and are pertinent to an upcoming re-evaluation of the effects of current mine permitting regulations to the recovery and survival of federally protected species. Expand
Assessing landform alterations induced by mountaintop mining
A comprehensive impact analysis of mountaintop removal and valley fill (MTR/VF) mining requires an understanding of landform alterations since ecological impacts are so intricately linked. In thisExpand
How many mountains can we mine? Assessing the regional degradation of Central Appalachian rivers by surface coal mining.
This work mapped surface mining from 1976 to 2005 for a 19,581 km(2) area of southern West Virginia and linked these maps with water quality and biological data for 223 streams to estimate the amount of watershed mining, stream ionic strength, or sulfate concentrations beyond which biological impairment is likely. Expand
Cumulative impacts of mountaintop mining on an Appalachian watershed
The results demonstrate the cumulative impact of multiple mines within a single catchment and provide evidence that mines reclaimed nearly two decades ago continue to contribute significantly to water quality degradation within this watershed. Expand
The Overlooked Terrestrial Impacts of Mountaintop Mining
Ecological research on mountaintop mining has been focused on aquatic impacts because the overburden (i.e., the mountaintop) is disposed of in nearby valleys, which leads to a wide range ofExpand
Impacts of Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining on the Mud River, West Virginia: Selenium Accumulation, Trophic Transfer, and Toxicity in Fish
Selenium (Se) is a micronutrient necessary for the function of a variety of important enzymes; Se also exhibits a narrow range in concentrations between essentiality and toxicity. OviparousExpand
Environmental hazard assessment of Benga Mining’s proposed Grassy Mountain Coal Project
  • A. Lemly
  • Economics
  • Environmental Science & Policy
  • 2019
Abstract The Grassy Mountain Coal Project is a planned mountaintop open-pit development by Benga Mining Limited that would destroy 2,800 ha of scenic Rocky Mountain landscape in southwest Alberta,Expand
Characterizing the presence of P . cinnamomi on reclaimed mines in Eastern Kentucky
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Soaring Extinction Threats to Endemic Plants in Brazilian Metal-Rich Regions
The loss of plant species associated with mineral-rich areas should be added to the list of ecologic and genetic damages recurrently derived from surface-mining activities. Expand


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Surface mining of coal and subsequent reclamation represent the dominant land use change in the central Appalachian Plateau (CAP) region of the United States. Hydrologic impacts of surface miningExpand
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The goal of this study was to quantify the changes to ecosystem structure and function associated with a conversion from forest to reclaimed mine grassland by comparing a small watershed containing a 15-year-old reclaimed mine with a forested, reference watershed in western Maryland. Expand
Downstream effects of mountaintop coal mining: comparing biological conditions using family- and genus-level macroinvertebrate bioassessment tools
The results show that mining activity has had subtle to severe impacts on benthic macroinvertebrate communities and that the biological condition most strongly correlates with a gradient of ionic strength. Expand
Detection of Flooding Responses at the River Basin Scale Enhanced by Land use Change
[1] The Georges Creek watershed (area 187.5 km2) in western Maryland (United States) has experienced land use changes (>17% of area) associated with surface mining of coal. The adjacent Savage RiverExpand
Changes in the extent of surface mining and reclamation in the Central Appalachians detected using a 1976-2006 Landsat time series
Abstract Surface mining and reclamation is the dominant driver of land cover land use change (LCLUC) in the Central Appalachian Mountain region of the Eastern U.S. Accurate quantification of theExpand
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Abstract Carbon (C) accreditation of forest development projects is one approach for sequestering atmospheric CO2, under the provisions of the Kyoto protocol. The C sequestration potential ofExpand
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The results of a hydrological analysis that was conducted as part of a larger, multifaceted, collaborative effort to quantify ecosystem functions in watersheds subjected to land-use and land-coverExpand
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AbstractValley fill mining has the potential to alter headwater stream habitat in many areas in the eastern United States. In valley fill mining, overburden is removed to expose underlying coalExpand