New Frontiers In Reclamation At PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference

The 14th annual PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference held in State College attracted over 120 attendees who explored innovative ways to achieve abandoned mine reclamation in Pennsylvania under the theme, “New Frontiers In Reclamation.”

A highlight of the conference was the presentation of this year’s MayFly Award which went to  Bob Eppley of the Blacklick Creek Watershed Association.  The award itself was a beautiful one-of-a-kind welded sculpture by Michael Bestwick of Fennelton, PA.

Those involved in AMD reclamation are recognizing that times are changing and we have indeed entered a new frontier in reclamation.  The conference gave attendees the chance to share with each other some of the exciting opportunities that abound with new and emerging treatment technologies, in addition to partnership opportunities with industry in utilizing abandoned mine drainage and mine pool water.

The conference provided a useful forum for the dissemination of information and encouraged discussions between industry, watershed groups and decision makers that can help to further innovations in public policy, abandoned mine reclamation, remediation and restoration.

Attending the conference from Stream Restoration, Inc. and BioMost, Inc. were Tim Danehy, Margaret Dunn, Cliff Denholm, Shaun Busler and Bryan Page.

Bryan was one of the Friday speakers with his presentation entitled, “Micro-hydroelectric Power Generation Utilizing Mine Drainage.” Bryan discussed the two micro-hydroelectric turbines installed in 2012 at the Antrim Treatment Plant, the first project of its kind in Pennsylvania that uses treated and untreated AMD to generate electricity.

Shaun was another speaker with his talk on “Datashed 2.0.”  Shaun presented basic information on the purpose and value of using Datashed, a free online, GIS-enabled database created to store water quality data and project-related information about watershed restoration projects.

He discussed its importance as the single, largest-known, publicly-available repository of information related to specific individual passive treatment systems and this information can be shared and utilized by many different groups and individuals.  Check out the Datashed website for yourself.

Saturday’s line-up of speakers featured another passive treatment expert from SRI, Cliff Denholm.  Cliff’s presentation was entitled, “Passive Treatment System Operation, Maintenance and Rehabilitation Experiences.”

Other noted conference speakers were Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Michael Krancer, who delivered the keynote address Friday morning and Ron Hamlen, from the Lyme Disease Association of Southeastern PA.

Ron spoke to a packed, standing-room-only crowd as he shared his expertise on lyme disease and its significance to those who often work outdoors.

Click Here to see copies of presentations from the Conference.

(reprinted from the October issue of The Catalyst published by the Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition.)


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