☰ Revisor of Missouri


Chapter 444

< > Effective - 28 Aug 1990    bottom

  444.610.  Reclamation and care requirements. — 1.  Every operator to whom a permit is issued pursuant to the provisions of sections 444.500 to 444.755 may engage in strip mining upon the lands described in the permit upon the performance of and subject to the following requirements with respect to such lands:

  (1)  All ridges and peaks of overburden created by strip mining, except areas where lakes may be formed under subdivision (5) of subsection 1 of this section, or where washing, cleaning or retaining ponds and reservoirs may be formed under subdivision (2) of subsection 1 of this section, shall be graded to a rolling topography traversable by farm machinery, but such slopes need not be reduced to less than the original grade of that area prior to mining, and the slope of the ridge of overburden resulting from a box cut need not be reduced to less than twenty-five degrees from horizontal whenever the same cannot be practically incorporated into the land reclaimed for wildlife purposes under subdivision (2) of subsection 1 of this section.  In strip mining all debris, trees, wood, logs, stones, rocks, coal, particles of coal, sandstone, or any other material or substance removed from the surface prior to mining or from the pit area during mining shall be finally disposed of to the satisfaction of the commission before the bond or any portion thereof be released.

  (2)  In strip mining coal, the operator may set aside reasonable areas for the construction of ponds and reservoirs to be used during the mining operation for washing, cleaning, milling or otherwise preparing the product which need not be graded to a rolling topography.  Such areas shall be constructed so that the dams, dikes and retaining structures shall be secure from washouts, erosion and structural failures and shall prevent the siltation of lands and waters below them, the pollution of the air by solid wastes, or the creation of a health or sanitation hazard or nuisance.  Other than planned water impoundments, there shall be no depressions to accumulate water but lateral drainage ditches connecting to natural or constructed waterways shall be constructed whenever directed by the commission.  As a means of controlling damaging runoff, the commission may require the operator to construct terraces or use such other measures and techniques as are necessary to control soil erosion and siltation on reclaimed land.

  (3)  Up to and including twenty-five percent of the total acreage to be reclaimed each year need not be graded to a rolling topography except that all peaks and ridges shall be leveled off to a minimum width of thirty feet, if the land is reclaimed for wildlife purposes as required by the commission.

  (4)  The commission shall not approve the application for a permit to conduct strip mining where such mining would endanger a residence, public building, school, church, cemetery, commercial or residential building, stream, lake, public road or other property.  In the case of strip mining operations which remove and do not replace lateral support, unless mutually agreed upon by the operator and the adjacent property owner, the top of the consolidated material of the last open cut adjacent to the property line of other property not owned or leased by the operator shall, at the time mining is completed, not be closer to such other property line than a distance of twenty-five feet plus one and one-half times the depth of such cut as measured from original ground surface to the top of consolidated material.  "Consolidated material" consists of materials of sufficient hardness or ability to resist weathering and to inhibit erosion or sloughing.

  (5)  The operator may construct earth dams to form lakes in pits resulting from the final cut in a mining area; except that, the formation of the lakes shall not interfere with underground or other mining operations or damage adjoining property and shall comply with the requirements of subdivision (6) of subsection 1 of this section.

  (6)  The operator shall cover the exposed face of a mineral seam where acid forming materials are present, to a depth of not less than two feet with earth that will support plant life or with a permanent water impoundment, terraced or otherwise so constructed as to prevent a constant inflow of water from any stream and to prevent surface water from flowing into such impoundment, in such amounts as will cause runoff or spillage from said impoundment, in a volume which will cause kills of fish or animals downstream.  Gob shall be covered to a depth of not less than two feet with earth or spoil material capable of supporting plant life.

  (7)  The operator shall reclaim all affected lands except as otherwise provided in sections 444.500 to 444.755.  The operator shall determine on company-owned land which parts of the affected land shall be reclaimed for forest, pasture, crop, horticultural, homesite, recreational, industrial or other use including food, shelter, and ground cover for wildlife, and shall show same by appropriate designation on the map filed pursuant to section 444.550.  Where forest planting is shown on the map, the operator may elect whether the forest is to be hardwood or conifers, or both, and whether its future use is to be for lumber, pulpwood or some other purpose.

  (8)  The operator, with the approval of the commission, shall sow, set out or plant upon the affected land described in the map, filed pursuant to section 444.550, seeds, plants, cuttings of trees, shrubs, grasses or legumes.  The plantings or seedlings shall be appropriate to the type of reclamation designated by the operator on company-owned land and with the consent of the owner on leased land and shall be based upon the recommendations of technically trained foresters and agronomists.

  (9)  Such other requirements as the commission may prescribe by rule or regulation to conform with the purposes and requirements of sections 444.500 to 444.755.

  2.  An operator shall commence the reclamation of the area of land affected by its operation as soon as possible after the beginning of strip mining of that area in accordance with the plan of reclamation required by sections 444.500 to 444.755, the rules and regulations of the commission, the conditions of the permit, and shall complete grading within twelve months after the expiration date of the permit.  The seeding and planting of supporting vegetation shall be completed within twenty-four months after the expiration date of the permit with survival of such supporting vegetation by the second growing season.


(L. 1971 S.B. 1 § 14, A.L. 1976 S.B. 646, A.L. 1990 H.B. 1584)

---- end of effective  28 Aug 1990 ----

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