CHARLESTON, W.V.a. – The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) has approved permit reinstatements to allow for reclamation activities at the Rush Creek mine facility in Kanawha County.
The Rush Creek facility, located near Kanawha State Forest, was previously operated by Revelation Energy, LLC, until it filed for bankruptcy in July 2019.
Keystone West Virginia, LLC, who will take over the site, submitted reinstatement applications in June. The WVDEP approved the permit reinstatements Wednesday.
"The WVDEP strives to find ways to make sure responsible parties take ownership of their sites to lessen the burden on our Special Reclamation Fund, and ultimately, state taxpayers," said WVDEP Cabinet Secretary Harold Ward. "This is the best course of action and we look forward to working with Keystone to ensure that the Rush Creek area is reclaimed properly and in a timely manner."
The terms of the approved permits do not allow for any further mineral removal from the site and Keystone must submit a reclamation plan, also known as a reclamation transition agreement, to address all outstanding non-compliances to the WVDEP within 30 days.
The agreement prioritizes the violations that remain in effect and Keystone must abate the violations in that order.
"The sole focus of this operation will be reclamation and our inspection and enforcement staff will be heavily involved throughout the process," added Ward. "With the uptick in mining activity, we hope that others in the coal industry will take Keystone's lead and devote more resources to reclamation efforts."
Copies of the reinstatement applications and associated documents are available here: S300499
, and S300905