$10M to be disbursed among mine land reclamation projects
Funding administered through state Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy
A $10 million round of federal Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Pilot Program funding is available for Southwest Virginia projects focused on reclaiming abandoned mine land and promoting regional economic diversity, Gov. Ralph Northam announced Tuesday.
This is the fourth round of AML funding, which is administered by the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy. Projects must reclaim historic mining features and be focused on promoting renewable energy, agriculture and revitalizing “historically disadvantaged communities.”
“The Abandoned Mine Land Pilot Program provides important opportunities to repurpose land and water impacted by abandoned mines to advance renewable energy and revitalize historically disadvantaged communities in Southwest Virginia,” Northam said in a statement. “This program has funded several successful projects designed to develop solar resources, spur tourism, and improve infrastructure for new industrial sites.”
All projects must receive approval from the federal Office of Surface Mining and Reclamation Enforcement. Virginia is one of only six states selected to administer the pilot program, with the DMME receiving the initial $10 million in 2017, 2018 and 2019. The state has since approved 15 projects for the program.
“Our agency has big goals when it comes to renewable energy and supporting historically disadvantaged communities,” DMME Director John Warren said in a statement. “We are seeing development on these historic mine sites and new purpose to land once thought unusable. That is quite the accomplishment of our team at DMME, and we hope to see more creative ideas that will help contribute to a clean energy transition.”
Potential applicants can submit project proposals via the DMME website through April 1.