AML-Abandoned Mine Lands
Environmental hazards caused by the extraction of coal from the earth. Landowners have been extracting coal via strip mining and underground mining since the late 1700’s. This legacy has created landscapes that one could only imagine on an alien planet, but they exist right here in America. A whole list of AML Features is available. Abandoned Mine Lands are abundant in the Appalachian Mountain Region specifically in the Anthracite and Bituminous Coal Fields of Pennsylvania. Those that were shut down since 1971 are considered “pre Act” mines and exempt the landowners from cleanup.
Above is a panoramic shot of the Whale Back Pit in the Shamokin Creek Watershed, Northumberland County, PA. Shamokin Creek Restoration Association member is also talking a photo in the foreground to show how large the pit really is. The Whale Back is of interest to geologists from all over the nation and a great place to go fossil hunting. It is also a favorite dumping ground for local undesirables.
Want to see more pictures of AML? Go to the AML Section of our Photo Gallery
For a Web Based Database of Abandoned Mine Land Problem Areas (AMLIS) that you can search and query please visit OSM’s Website. EPCAMR has produced a RAMLIS GIS CD Tool to view thisand related data.
When approaching these sites, please be sure to Stay Out, Stay Alive! You do not know of the stability of the ground or hidden dangers such as pits and highwalls. Seriously, do not take a chance.
This video was produced in New Mexico, but switch the scenery from desert to woods and this is exactly what we have in Pennsylvania.