AML Reclamation

 
Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Reclamation

The federal Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 established authority for the AML Fund.  Production fees of $0.35 per ton for surface mined-coal and $0.15 per ton for underground-mined coal are collected from coal producers at all active coal mining operations.  These funds reclaim pre-law (1977) and certain interim program (1977-1982) sites left abandoned, un-reclaimed, or insufficiently reclaimed.

The Kentucky coal industry (through FY 2004) has contributed $898.6 million to the Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Reclamation Fund since 1978.  Nationally, over $7.45 billion (through FY 2005) has been paid by active coal operators across the United States.

Fifty percent of the total Kentucky AML fees go directly to the state share account. However, $124.4 million (September, 2004) is unallocated due to the federal appropriation process (see Kentucky State Share Balance column in table below).

$1,801,798,273 of AML taxes remain unallocated for reclaiming abandoned mines across the United States.
 

Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Reclamation Fund (millions)

Fiscal
Year

Kentucky
Collection

Kentucky
State Share*

KY AML Grant
Disbursement

KY State Share
Balance**


1978

$  20.38

 

$  14.98

 

$   0

 

$  15.0

 

1979

31.18 

16.85

 

0.6

 

31.8

 

1980

34.64 

17.51

 

0

 

49.3

 

1981

36.52 

17.91

 

1.4

 

67.2

 

1982

38.60 

18.29

 

16.4

 

69.6

 

1983

31.46 

15.56

 

28.9

 

56.7

 

1984

38.12 

18.87

 

36.8

 

44.8

 

1985

36.91 

17.30

 

32.3

 

31.4

 

1986

35.29 

17.25

 

19.7

 

31.6

 

1987

35.02 

17.61

 

16.4

 

36.7

 

1988

26.34 

13.17

 

15.3

 

37.5

 

1989

35.39 

17.69

 

27.6

 

38.5

 
199038.40 

19.41

 

6.4

 

43.3

 

1991

37.04 

18.45

 

11.0

 

47.8

 

1992

35.60 

17.82

 

28.2

 

54.9

 

1993

36.18 

18.04

 

11.5

 

62.8

 
199436.82 

18.24

 

18.7

 

70.7

 

1995

35.49 

17.61

 

15.5

 

77.1

 

1996

33.98 

16.90

 

16.0

 

83.6

 
199734.66 

17.24

 

16.1

 

90.1

 
199835.04 

17.45

 

15.7

 

97.4

 
199932.38 16.15 16.5 103.4 
200030.49 15.19 17.0 108.0 
200129.42 14.71 18.8 111.9 
200230.16 15.03 16.7 116.9 
200326.71 13.35 16.4 120.5 
200426.38 13.19 16.0 124.4 

Totals

$  898.60

 

$  451.77

 

$  435.9

  

*NOTE: Includes reclamation fees, interest, and audit adjustments and will not equal exactly 50%.
**NOTE: Adding across table will not equal balance due, to all adjustments not being included in table.

 
AML Reclamation Accomplishments in Kentucky (through 2004)
Kentucky AML ProjectsFederal AML Projects
745 Multi-site State AML Projects
$419 million in expenditures
15,400 acres reclaimed
(plus various projects currently under construction)
1,255 Multi-site AML Projects
$130 million in expenditures
Rural Abandoned Mine Program
Emergency and Non-Emergency

From 1978-2003, 2,000 multi-site AML projects have been undertaken in Kentucky by both the federal and state programs reclaiming thousands of acres and spending $499 million in AML funds.

Some accomplishments to date of the state’s AML projects in Kentucky are:

77 water line projects - $64 million.
Over 27,200 feet of highwall eliminated.
Over 200 hazardous structures removed.
Over 2,000 acres of landslide projects stabilized.
1,909 mine portal closures.
145 vertical shafts sealed.
45 miles of stream restoration.
282 acres of mine fires controlled.

Today’s coal industry in Kentucky is reclaiming mined land to uses as good or better than before mining, and through contributions to the AML fund, helping to restore previously mined lands to current reclamation standards.

Sources:  Environmental and Public Protection Cabinet, Division of Abandoned Lands; U.S. Office of Surface Mining (OSM); U.S. Department of Agriculture, RAMP