EPCAMR Awards $5000 in Community Grants to Regional Projects throughout the Anthracite Region supporting Abandoned Mine Land Reclamation in partnership with the Anthracite Region Independent Power Producers Association (ARIPPA)

For more information, contact Robert E. Hughes-EPCAMR Executive Director at 570-371-3523

September 7, 2011

(Ashley, PA)  For the second year in a row, EPCAMR and its regional partners, WPCAMR, and ARIPPA, have been able to award $5000 in grant funding to community projects supporting abandoned mine land reclamation throughout the Anthracite Region that leveraged another $160,000 in other funding sources.

Three projects were successfully selected and reviewed by a Technical Review Committee made up of a representative from the PA DEP Bureau of Abandoned Mine Reclamation and the EPCAMR Staff. A presentation was made at the ARIPPA Annual Technical Convention in Harrisburg, on August 24th.

Huber Breaker Preservation Society-Construction of a Pedestrian Access Man-gate to the Huber Breaker Miner’s Memorial Park, Ashley, PA$1000; Luzerne County

  • Build a gate for pedestrian access in the existing wrought iron fence at the front of the Huber Memorial Park Site along S. Main Street in Ashley
  • Promote eco-tourism and recreational opportunities to explore the grounds of the Huber Breaker Colliery from a distance
  • Provide a means for reading the interpretive signage about the history of the last standing Huber Coal Breaker in the Northern Anthracite Coal Fields and the surrounding abandoned mining landscape

The HBPS has been working to build a Miner’s Memorial Park on the 3.1 acres of land in front of the remaining structures of the Huber Breaker. While the fate of the original structure of the Breaker itself is uncertain, the HBPS wish to photograph, document and share their findings with generations to come.  The Memorial Park will provide an educational landscape for community members, students, and travelers to learn about the importance of what was once the largest coal breaker in the world.

The Huber Breaker Preservation Society strives to educate and preserve the heritage of the Anthracite Coal Region.  HBPS has been in contact with Ironworkers Local #489 apprentices from, Scranton, PA, who have volunteered to provide the labor to cut the fence, construct & mount the gate but need supplies & materials.


The Park will include the pedestrian gate & a driveway gate to allow access to a parking area, & feature a black granite monument visible to South Main Street honoring the memory of the Breaker & the thousands of miners & laborers who worked there between 1939 & 1977.

The park will also include walking trails, informational kiosks highlighting history of the breaker & the coal mining industry, picnic tables, & gardens planted with indigenous, non-invasive vegetation. The remaining culm will be filled with topsoil in order to beautify the space & make it ready to grow plants & trees other than the white birch currently covering much of the area.

Project partners include:  Eastern Pennsylvania Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation (EPCAMR), Earth Conservancy, #1 Contracting, Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor Commission, Ashley Borough, Live Well, Luzerne County PA!, ARIPPA, & the Wilkes-Barre Area Career & Technical Center, Horticultural & Landscaping Class


Schuylkill Headwaters Association-Wagner Run Stream Relocation Project, W. Branch Schuylkill River$3000; Schuylkill County

  • Wagner Run, is a tributary of the West Branch Schuylkill River.
  • The primary goal of the Wagner Run Restoration Project is to reduce recharge to the Pine Knot Mine Pool, and in turn its discharge to the West Branch Schuylkill River and the Schuylkill River.
  • The stream is on property owned Reading Anthracite, Inc. & by the Minersville Municipal Authority, with whom the Schuylkill Headwaters Association and EPCAMR have a good working relationship in planning the proposed project.
  • The objectives will be met by evaluating and implementing the construction of a berm to keep water from leaving the stream channel of Wagner Run, thereby keeping the surface water away from abandoned mining slopes and preventing its degradation within the mine pool.
  • This project will reduce the volume of water entering the Pine Knot Mine Pool, and therefore improve water quality by reducing AMD loadings from the Pine Knot Discharge to the West Branch Schuylkill River.



During high flow events, Wagner Run overtops its bank.  The water that leaves the stream channel, then flows into an abandoned stripping pit and enters the mine pool below, later exiting as AMD at the Pine Knot discharge

The Wagner Run Area remediation will result in the restoration of approximately 900 linear feet of stream.

The completed project will consist of a constructed berm along the stream that will have a clay center.   Rip-rap with minimum R-6 stone will line the side of the berm to prevent erosion in high flow events.  The berm will contain the water to the stream channel, preventing water from entering the mine pool and contributing to the Oak Hill/Pine Knot AMD discharge.

Project partners include: Schuylkill Conservation District (SCD), Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP), Reading Anthracite Company, RETTEW Associates, Inc., Minersville Municipal Authority, Schuylkill River Heritage Area, ARIPPA, EPCAMR, and WPCAMR.


Eastern Middle Anthracite Regional Recovery Inc. (EMARR)-Raw Water In-take Retrofit Construction Project at the Audenreid AMD Treatment System, Catawissa Creek$1000 ; Luzerne and Schuylkill Counties

The Audenreid AMD Treatment System, which had been treating the largest Anthracite abandoned mine discharge at an average of 8,000 gpm was dedicated in the Summer of 2006 in June. 3 Days later, after the dedication, a lingering rain storm dropped 10 inches of rainfall over the watershed in a very short period of time. The tunnel portal blew out and covered the entire intake structure and piping that had transported the mine water into the AMD Treatment System, leaving a clogged treatment system and an intake that would not take in sufficient mine water for treatment. It is now up and running once again. This funding supported a portion of the retrofit costs to the raw water intake construction system.

Existing Intake & Proposed Bypass (in black drawing) at the Audenreid AMD Tunnel Discharge in the Catawissa Creek


Flow Control By-Pass Construction Completed 

 Project Partners included: EPCAMR, EMARR, SCCD, CCRA, PPL, Hazleton Environmental, and an Anonymous Foundation Donor. EPCAMR, WPCAMR, and ARIPPA are planning a 2012 Summer Golf Outing Fundraiser to generate additional income that will allow us to provide more funding and administrative support to the Coalitions to continue to provide funding for such great projects as these above. Stay tuned!

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