36 CFR § 9.11 - Reclamation requirements.

§ 9.11 Reclamation requirements.

(a) As contemporaneously as possible with the operations, but in no case later than six (6) months after completion of operations and within the time specified in an approved mining reclamation plan, unless a longer period is authorized in writing by the Regional Director, each operator shall initiate reclamation as follows:

(1) Where the claim was patented without surface use restriction, the operator shall at a minimum:

(i) Remove all above ground structures, equipment, and other manmade debris used for operations; and

(ii) Rehabilitate the area of operations to a condition which would not constitute a nuisance; or would not adversely affect, injure or damage, federally owned lands.

(2) On any claim which was patented with surface use restrictions or is unpatented, each operator must take steps to restore natural conditions and processes, which steps shall include, but are not limited to:

(i) Removing all above ground structures, equipment and other manmade debris;

(ii) Providing for the prevention of surface subsidence;

(iii) Replacing overburden and spoil, wherever economically and technologically practicable;

(iv) Grading to reasonably conform the contour of the area of operations to a contour similar to that which existed prior to the initiation of operations, where such grading will not jeopardize reclamation;

(v) Replacing the natural topsoil necessary for vegetative restoration; and

(vi) Reestablishing native vegetative communities.

(b) Reclamation under paragraph (a)(2) of this section is unacceptable unless it provides for the safe movement of native wildlife, the reestablishment of native vegetative communities, the normal flow of surface and reasonable flow of subsurface waters, the return of the area to a condition which does not jeopardize visitor safety or public use of the unit, and return of the area to a condition equivalent to its pristine beauty.

(c) Reclamation required by this section shall apply to operations authorized under this part, except that all terms relating to reclamation of previously issued special use permits revoked by this part for operations to be continued under an approved plan of operations shall be incorporated into the operator's reclamation plans.

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