Montana Headwaters Abandoned Mine Reclamation Project
In May of 2014, Madison County submitted a grant application to the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation for $499,828 in Reclamation and Development funds to conduct the North Willow Creek Reclamation Project between June 2015 and October 2017. Public funds would allow economically marginal mine wastes to be cleaned up at a fraction of the cost of in situ capping or repository placement, saving hard-earned taxpayer dollars. Activities to be completed if the project is funded would include mine waste excavation, screen and crushing, hauling, reprocessing for gold, reclaiming all removal areas with native vegetation, including stream banks, and monitoring to determine success. Additional activities include bat friendly adit and shaft closures. The project is a mix of BLM, USDA Forest Service, and private lands directly west of Pony, Montana in the North Willow Creek subwatershed.
The Montana Headwaters Abandoned Mine Reclamation Project is a coalition of public and private partners implementing a landscape scale abandoned mine reclamation initiative that restores degraded landscapes, improves water quality, addresses health and human safety issues, and creates jobs and a restoration economy for rural communities.
Our partnership is bringing together public and private interests working cooperatively to:
- Identify high priority abandoned mines for reclamation through GIS analysis and field work.
- Coordinate reclamation efforts with industry in order to clean up sites of lower economic value, but are of high ecological concern.
- Develop a model public-private approach for reclamation that benefits the people of Montana and its natural resources.
- Support policies and investments that ramp up remining efforts through innovative technologies, education and outreach, and strategic business investments.
Madison and Jefferson counties, Montana; Reclaim LLC, American Innovative Minerals LLC, Trout Unlimited, Montana DNRC, Golden Sunlight Mine, Headwaters RC& D, Moen Builders, Craighead Institute, and KC Harvey Environmental.