Coal Mining Permitting Hurdles
coal mining permitting

Coal mining is an important part of our energy generation in the U.S.; however, it is an exceedingly regulated industry.

Mining activity cannot take place without permits issued by the state.  Coal mines need at least two basic permits to operate: a mining permit and a NPDES permit.  The mining permit allows the company to mine and governs factors specific to that particular mine.  The NPDES permit allows the coal company to discharge water from constructed outlets, provided it meets specific effluent limits.  Both permits include different water sampling and reporting requirements.


Larson Design Group (LDG) currently employs a former DEP West Virginia Mine Inspector who can help coal companies understand the sometimes difficult permitting process, including the specific type and frequency of required reporting.  LDG can help keep companies up to date on the current regulations and requirements.

Effluent limitations serve as the primary mechanism in NPDES permits for controlling effluent discharge to receiving waters.  The coal industry is facing more stringent water quality based effluent limits.  LDG can complete required sampling and in some cases can modify permits to decrease the frequency or limits coal companies must meet.  LDG can also review treatment systems on site or design systems that are able to treat effluent for the specific parameters of concern.

LDG offers sampling services, preparation of reports, and submissions to the DEP, as well as compaction testing and certifications and drainage system inspections.

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