ODNR accepting grant proposals to transform abandoned mine lands

Athens Messenger, June 4, 2022

COLUMBUS – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) is offering up to $17 million in grants for projects that will encourage economic and community development across Ohio. The Division of Mineral Resources Management (DMRM) is accepting applications for projects that will eliminate hazards left behind by mining activity and/or improve areas with abandoned mine lands.

“Communities will now have the resources they need to transform potential hazards into beautiful, useful spaces,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz said. “Transforming these areas will provide an economic boost through industrial and commercial development, and will give people more safe places to walk, bike, and enjoy.”

Abandoned mine lands (AML) are sites that were mined for coal prior to 1977. Project sites eligible include unreclaimed, previously reclaimed, or lands adjacent to abandoned coal mine lands or polluted waters or communities impacted by historic coal production. The new program will sub-grant AMLER funds received from the federal Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE). Projects must follow the guidelines set forth in in OSMRE’s AMLER Guidance Document.