SOMERSET COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Rep. Carl Walker Metzgar (R-Somerset) and Sen. Pat Stefano (R-32) announced that a project for Shade Creek is receiving funds for a mine reclamation project.

Shade Creek will receive a portion of $38.76 million in funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) 2023 Abandoned Mine Lands and Acid Mine Drainage (AML/AMD) Grant Program.

“Upholding health and safety in Somerset County are of utmost priority to me, and this news ensures that we can continue to do just that,” Metzgar said.

The undisclosed amount of funding will help complete a development plan for an acid mine drainage active treatment for five discharges that impact Shade Creek.

This includes the following:

  • The collection of historical water quality and flows
  • Mine pool mapping
  • Mine pool drilling and monitoring
  • Plant site selection
  • Discharge conveyance plan
  • Estimated design and construction costs
  • A sludge disposal plan

The program aims to address serious human health and safety problems that result from abandoned coal mines, as well as treat AMD. The goal also focuses on preventing the loss of restored streams and creating significant water quality improvements that go toward watershed restoration.

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“This funding will prioritize the health of the communities surrounding Shade Creek so the abandoned coal mine and any acid drainage doesn’t harm anyone. Shade Creek is a wonderful spot for recreation including kayaking, fishing and hiking and we want to keep it that way,” Stefano said.