Mining Program Strategic Plan, 2019-2023 - Purpose of the Strategic Plan
This Strategic Plan serves as a roadmap and forms the research foundation for The NIOSH Mining Program. It informs our research project planning, sets the priorities and goals for the upcoming years, and ensures that our work will be relevant and impactful. We initially developed the NIOSH Mining Program research strategy in 2004 to focus mining research and prevention activities on the areas of greatest need, as articulated by our stakeholders and supported by surveillance data.
Since the implementation of the original Plan, the face of mining health and safety has changed due to: (1) a series of disasters that resulted in passage of the Mine Improvement and New Emergency Response Act (MINER Act) of 2006, which drove new technological development; (2) a trend toward mining in more complex geological conditions; (3) a push toward deeper mines; (4) the continuing introduction of automation and new technologies; (5) the contraction of the U.S. coal industry and the recent growth of the aggregates industry; and (6) changes in the demographics of the mining workforce, with a trend toward younger, less experienced workers and more contractors. In light of these and other changes, this updated Plan sets new research priorities based on BNI (burden, need, and impact), stakeholder input, and the regulatory agenda including rulemaking by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). The Plan is meant to clearly communicate, both internally and externally, what the NIOSH Mining Program is doing, why we are doing it, and how we will measure our success.