For the next 2 years, Earthmovers Unlimited of Kylertown, Pennsylvania, will be working to restore a former coal mining site at the junction of Route 924 and Interstate 81, near Humboldt Industrial Park. The site is owned by Pagnotti Enterprises.

“It’s pretty rugged. There’s water-filled pits, lots of highwall—almost a mile that we will be filling,” Michael Korb, environmental program manager for the state Bureau of Abandoned Mine Reclamation, said of the site called Cranberry West.

At Cranberry West, workers will move 1.3 million cubic yards of waste coal and other material piled on the site, install controls for storm water and erosion and replant the land with grasses selected to take root on old mine sites.

Funding comes from a fee for each ton of coal mined that companies pay into the federal Abandoned Mine Lands fund. Landowners of property judged hazardous because of high walls, pits and open mine entrances can apply to have land reclaimed for free through the program that the state bureau administers.

Sounds like a good deal for Pagnotti Enterprises, and for the people who live nearby. Restoration will also remove one source of acid mine pollution.

Source: “Mine Land Restoration Project to Begin in Humboldt,” by Kent Jackson, Citizen’s Voice (Wilkes-Barre, PA), March 30, 2010

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