Reclamation Standards for Landforms
Overview of BC Law
Under BC law, land and watercourses must be reclaimed, where practicable, “in a manner that is consistent with the adjacent landforms”.175 In addition, land must be left in a manner that ensures long-term stability,176 where stability is defined as “safety of an earth mass against structural failure or movement”.177 More specific requirements are provided in mining laws from other jurisdictions as shown in the following Recommended Solutions.
BC law lacks explicit reclamation standards for site topography.
Clarify the description of final site topography requirements
[Tags: Topography; Closure Plans; Restoration]
Washington state law clearly sets out the final site topography that must be re-established for site reclamation – it “shall generally comprise sinuous contours, chutes and buttresses, spurs, and rolling mounds and hills, all of which shall blend with adjacent topography to a reasonable extent. Straight planar slopes and right angles should be avoided.”178 In California, state law mandates that certain features be avoided in the final site topography, such as“ un-natural topographic features, impediments to natural drainage, or conditions hazardous to human life and wildlife”.179 In addition, to avoid unnatural topographical features, the final topography cannot exceed pre-mining surface contour elevations by more than 25 feet.180
Require assessments of the effect of mine workings on the stability of the ground surface
[Tags: Surface Stability; Assessment; Closure Plans]
In Manitoba, the closure plan must include a description of the effect of all mine openings on the stability of the surface areas above and adjacent to areas used for mining activities to determine whether the surface area is likely to be disturbed.181 This is an important consideration, particularly for underground operations where surface disturbances may not be immediately visible, but where subsequent subsidence could create dangerous conditions.