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Laws, Regulations, and Guidance

Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA)

P.L. 95-87, Enacted August 3, 1977

  • "An Act to provide for the cooperation between the Secretary of the Interior and the States with respect to the regulation of surface coal mining operations, and the acquisition and reclamation of abandoned mines, and for other purposes." So begins the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, the law that established the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE).
  • Compilation of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, as amended (pdf). This link contains an unofficial compilation of all revisions to SMCRA through July 6, 2012. The file is word searchable.
  • Users of this compilation should be aware that there are slight variations between the enacted version and the version codified in the U.S. Code; when citing SMCRA, the U.S. Code is the only official source. Click here to link to SMCRA in the U.S. Code (Title 30, Chapter 25). Click here to view the document as a pdf.
  • Link to a Chronology of Major SMCRA-Related Milestones

Code of Federal Regulations

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) contains the rules that agencies use to accomplish their missions. The Office of the Federal Register publishes annual updates of the CFR and maintains an up-to-date electronic version of OSMRE's rules at this link:

The CFR contains only the text of the rules themselves. To better understand the background of a particular rule, you may wish to review the preamble to that rule as published in the Federal Register, using one of the links below.

Federal Register Notices

Compliance with the Endangered Species Act

Formal Section 7 Biological Opinion and Conference Report Regarding the Approval and Conduct of Surface Coal Mining and Reclamation Operations

Executive Orders

Executive Order 12898 - Environmental Justice

Page Last Modified/Reviewed: 5/22/15

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