New Mining Regs, New Discontent. (Regulations)

By Fields, Scott | Environmental Health Perspectives, February 2002 | Go to article overview

New Mining Regs, New Discontent. (Regulations)


Fields, Scott, Environmental Health Perspectives


Of the 262 million surface acres of land under the care of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), about 85% is potentially available for mining. According to the 1999 National Academy of Sciences report Hardrock Mining on Federal Lands, more than 157,000 acres are already being mined or are affected by active mining exploration. With the new year 2002 came new rules for mines that operate on public land overseen by the BLM.

These "3809 regulations"--which took effect on 31 December 2001 against vehement protests from environmental organizations such as the Mineral Policy Center and Great Basin Mine Watch--are a scaled-back version of rules signed in the last days of the Clinton administration. The new rules remove provisions that environmentalists say are vital for protecting air, water, wildlife, and such cultural resources as Native American sacred sites, but that industry groups say would cripple their ability to function.

The final Bush rules retain many aspects of the Clinton version. They regulate small exploratory operations of five acres or less that had been exempt under earlier rules. They require mines to control the discharge of cyanide, which is used to strip minute particles of metal from ore. They require mines to control acid mine drainage, a process in which the combination of water, air, specialized bacteria, and the sulfides found in some types of ore produce environmentally damaging acidic water. And they require mines--new or existing--to provide financial guarantees, or bonds, that cover the cost of reclamation (as estimated by BLM staff) after a mine closes.

But the Bush administration also removed several rules that were vital to protecting the environment, says Great Basin Mine Watch director Tom Myers. Missing, he says, are rules that addressed chronic mining problems: pollution such as increases in arsenic and mercury in surface and groundwater, and dewatering, the process in which groundwater levels are lowered to make mining possible. The new regulations do require that mining companies line their waste facilities, but, Myers says, "if there is a leak, the BLM can't go beyond requiring a liner to actually [requiring that mining companies] clean up the groundwater"--that's where other laws such as the Clean Water Act would presumably step in. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

New Mining Regs, New Discontent. (Regulations)
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.