405 KAR 1:240. Mountaintop removal

Link to law: http://www.lrc.ky.gov/kar/405/001/240.htm
Published: 2015

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      405 KAR 1:240.

Mountaintop removal.

 

      RELATES TO: KRS

350.450

      STATUTORY AUTHORITY:

KRS 350.028, 350.450

      NECESSITY, FUNCTION,

AND CONFORMITY: KRS 350.028 requires the Environmental and Public Protection

Cabinet to adopt rules and administrative regulations for the strip mining of

coal. This administrative regulation sets forth special requirements for strip

mining by the method of mountaintop removal.

 

      Section 1. Strip

mining operations that remove entire coal seams running through the upper part

of a mountain, ridge, or hill by removing all the overburden and creating a

level plateau of gently rolling contour with no highwalls remaining are exempt

from the requirements of 405 KAR 1:130 for achieving approximate original

contour, if the following requirements are met:

      (1) An industrial,

commercial, agricultural, residential, or public facility (including

recreational facilities) use is proposed for the affected land.

      (2) The alternative

postmining land use criteria in 405 KAR 1:070 are met and the proposal is

approved by the cabinet.

      (3) The requirements

of all other applicable administrative regulations of this chapter are met in

addition to the special requirements of this administrative regulation.

 

      Section 2. Strip

mining operations conducted pursuant to this administrative regulation shall

comply with the standards of this section.

      (1) An outcrop

barrier of sufficient width, consisting of the toe of the lowest coal seam and

its associated overburden, shall be retained to prevent slides and erosion.

      (2) The final graded

top plateau slopes on the mined area shall be less than 1v:5h (twenty (20)

percent) so as to create a level plateau or gently rolling configuration and

the outslope of the plateau shall not exceed 1v:2h (fifty (50) percent), except

where engineering data substantiates and the cabinet finds that a minimum

static safety factor of 1.5 will be attained. The cabinet may require higher

static safety factors depending upon specific site conditions.

      (3) The resulting

level or gently rolling contour shall be graded to drain inward from the

outslope except at specific points where it drains over the outslopes in

protected stable channels.

      (4) All highwalls,

spoil piles, and depressions shall be eliminated except as provided in 405 KAR

1:130, Sections 4 and 5, with regard to backfilling and grading.

      (5) Damage to

natural water courses below the area to be mined shall be prevented.

      (6) Spoil shall be

placed on the mountaintop bench as is necessary to achieve the postmining land

use approved under 405 KAR 1:070. All excess spoil material not retained on the

mountaintop shall be placed in accordance with the standards of 405 KAR 1:140.

 

      Section 3. (1) All

permits giving approval for mountaintop removal shall be reviewed not more than

three (3) years from the date of issuance of the permit, unless the permittee

affirmatively demonstrates and the cabinet finds that all operations are

proceeding in accordance with the terms of the permit, KRS Chapter 350 and the

applicable administrative regulations of this chapter.

      (2) The terms of a

permit for mountaintop removal may be modified by the cabinet if it determines

that more stringent measures are necessary to prevent or control slides and

erosion, prevent damage to natural water courses, avoid water pollution, or to

assure successful revegetation. (4 Ky.R. 399; eff. 5-3-78; Am. 499; 5 Ky.R.

210; eff. 8-23-78; TAm eff. 8-9-2007.)