OFFICE OF SURFACE MINING RECLAMATION AND ENFORCEMENT
2009 news and stories
For prior news and stories, select the News and Stories Archive.
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OSM Announces Opportunity to Comment on Options for Revisions to Stream Buffer Zone and Related Rules
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM) announced the publication in the Federal Register of an advance notice of proposed rulemaking requesting comment on alternatives for revising the stream buffer zone rule and other rules concerning mountaintop mining. The stream buffer zone rule determines under what circumstances coal mining may be conducted in or within 100 feet of a perennial or intermittent stream. Mountaintop mining refers to coal mines in the steep terrain of central Appalachia that place excess spoil or waste in adjacent valleys that often contain headwater streams.
2008 Annual Report (includes data from FY 2007)
We have published our 2008 Annual Report. This report was compiled to meet the specific requirements of Sections 706, 411, and 529 of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (Public Law 95-87).
Immediate Stream Protection Measures
OSM is initiating a rulemaking process to modify the 2008 stream buffer zone rule to be more protective of streams. We will implement measures to provide increased protection for streams until that rule is finalized.
Interior Strengthens Coal Mining Oversight, Announces Initiatives to Better Protect Streams in Coal Country
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Department of the Interior is taking immediate actions to strengthen oversight of state surface coal mining programs and to promulgate Federal regulations to better protect streams affected by surface coal mining operations, Interior officials announced.
Interior Secretary Salazar Lauds Senate’s Confirmation of Joseph Pizarchik as Director of Office of Surface Mining
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today praised the Senate’s confirmation of Joseph Pizarchik as director of the Department’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement.
Pizarchik currently is director of the Pennsylvania’s Bureau of Mining and Reclamation, part of the state’s Department of Environmental Protection. The nomination requires Senate confirmation.
"Joe Pizarchik is a dedicated public servant whose experience in coal production will be invaluable as Director of Office of Surface Mining,” Secretary Salazar said. “I welcome his energy and insight on our policy team to balance the nation’s need for continued domestic coal production with protection of the environment," Salazar said.
Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement Honors Active Mine Operations for Outstanding Reclamation
The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM) will recognize eight mine operations with the bureau’s top honors in an annual awards program showcasing excellence in active mine reclamation.
The eight coal mining companies and their employees will be recognized at a banquet hosted by the National Mining Association on October 28, 2009.