Instability of Contoured Surface-mined Landscapes in the Northern Great Plains: Causes and Implications.
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Reclamation of surface-mined landscapes is commonly defined only in terms of biological productivity. Other critical concerns associated with surface mining include the long-term quality of groundwater and stability of the postmining landscape. Meaningful reclamation design must address all of these concerns. Reconnaissance of postmining landscapes indicates three types of instability occur in these settings including area-wide settling, localized collapse, and piping. Area-wide settling is most pronounced during the first year after contouring but appears in precontouring valley areas where frozen materials are contoured with a dozer. Although severe in some settings, development typically ends within 1 year. Piping appears to be a severe and long-term problem in some settings, usually beginning soon after contouring ceases and could continue for several years. In some postmining landscapes, piping has only started to develop after as many as 5 years of apparent stability.
CP; Final Contract Report;
For Reference Only At Bureau Libraries
North Dakota Geol. Survey