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Hydrologic and erosional characteristics of regraded surface coal mined land in Colorado.

Striffler WD; Rhodes RA
For Reference Only At Bureau Libraries, 1981; :1-119
Land disturbed by surface mining in Colorado and other Western States has increased substantially over the past several years and is likely to increase even more in the future. This study was initiated to provide basic information of hydrologic and erosional characteristics of regraded coal spoils in Colorado as an aid for planning future reclamation activities. Of 21 surface mines licensed in Colorado, 11 were sampled during the summers of 1980-81. Mines not sampled included those that had not progressed to the point that reclamation had begun and mines where operators denied permission to sample. All coal regions were sampled except the San Juan coalfield. Physical and hydrologic characteristics of regraded coal spoils in Colorado were determined using standard field and laboratory procedures. Field sampling included characterization of sites (slope, vegetation density, proportion of surface rock, bare soil, etc.) and infiltration measurements using a 1-m2 drop former raining on a 1/2-m2 rectangular plot frame. Core samples were analyzed for saturated hydraulic conductivity, bulk density, organic matter, moisture retention, and texture. The erosion potential of each site was determined using the universal soil loss equation. Results of the sampling indicate that infiltration rates vary widely both within and between sites.
Mining; Coal mines; Surface mining; Water supply; Water analysis; Environmental monitoring; Environmental factors; Environmental management; Environmental impacts; Sampling
Publication Date
Document Type
CP; Final Contract Report
Funding Type
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
OFR 81-83
NIOSH Division
Source Name
For Reference Only At Bureau Libraries
Performing Organization
Colorado State Univ.
Page last reviewed: November 12, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division