Welcome to the Division of Mine Reclamation
The Division of Mine Reclamation
In 1991, following significant revisions to the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act of 1975 (SMARA), the Division of Mine Reclamation (DMR) was created to provide a measure of oversight for local governments as they administer SMARA within their respective jurisdictions. To accomplish this goal, the Division of Mine Reclamation may provide comments to lead agencies on a mining operation’s reclamation plan and financial assurance and may initiate compliance actions that encourage SMARA compliance. While the primary focus is on existing mining operations and the return of those mined lands to a usable and safe condition, issues relating to abandoned legacy mines are addressed through the Abandoned Mine Lands program.
The Division of Mine Reclamation celebrated its
25-year milestone in 2016.
Inspection Workshops now available!
Inspection workshops are designed to train lead agency staff and their consultants who conduct inspections of surface mining operations. This workshop focuses on conducting SMARA inspections, including observing and measuring site conditions, updating financial assurances, and completing the inspection form. Each workshop consists of a two-day course with one day of classroom training and one day in the field at a local mine site. For ease of attendance, DMR is offering inspection workshops in different regions of the state. Please see our Workshops page for more information.
"Guidance Document for Surface Mine Inspectors" Rulemaking Approved
Effective April 1, 2018, this rulemaking adds section 3504.6 to the California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Division 2, Chapter 8, Subchapter 1, Article 1. This regulation incorporates by reference a training document entitled, "Guidance Document for Surface Mine Inspectors."
For more information regarding this rulemaking, please visit the Division of Mine Reclamation’s Rulemaking webpage.
Additionally, the Department is assisting the State Mining and Geology Board in rulemaking efforts related to other changes to Surface Mining and Reclamation Act. For more information regarding the State Mining and Geology Board’s rulemaking efforts, please visit their Rulemaking webpage.
Report to the California Legislature on the Activities of Lead Agencies and Surface Mining Operations
As a result of Senate Bill 447 (Lara), which was signed by Governor Brown in September 2013, the Department of Conservation's Division of Mine Reclamation (DMR), as noted in Public Resources Code (PRC) Section 2717(c)(1-10), is required to submit a report to the California Legislature on the activities of lead agencies and surface mining operations. From January through April 2017, DMR collaborated with Surface Mine and Reclamation Act Lead Agencies located throughout the state to ensure accurate information was presented to the California Legislature. DMR would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the Lead Agency staff that provided the valuable mining information presented in the Report.
DMR is pleased to announce the report was submitted to the California Legislature in August 2017. Please see the Legislative Reports page for more information and to view a copy of the report.
Efforts for Changes to the Guidance Document for Surface Mine Inspectors
The Department of Conservation (Department), through DMR, is undertaking rulemaking efforts related to the passage Senate Bill 209 (Pavely) and Assembly Bill 1142 (Gray). In coordination with the State Mining and Geology Board (SMGB) and stakeholders, DMR is in the process of establishing a Guidance Document for Surface Mine Inspectors. For more information regarding the Department’s rulemaking efforts, please visit DMR's
Rulemaking webpage .
Additionally, the Department is assisting the SMGB in rulemaking efforts related to other changes in SMARA. For more information regarding the SMGB’s rulemaking efforts, please visit their Rulemaking webpage .
Financial Assurance Cost Estimate Form (FACE-1)
The DMR is excited to announce the release of the Financial Assurance Cost Estimate form (FACE-1). As a result of Assembly Bill 1142 (Gray), which was signed by Governor Brown on April 18, 2016, mine operators, as noted in Public Resources Code section 2773.1(a)(4), are required to prepare financial assurance cost estimates on a form developed and approved by the State Mining and Geology Board. Form "FACE-1" was approved by the Office of Administrative Law and became effective on July 1, 2017. Please visit the
Forms page for more information.
New Reclamation Plan Checklist Available
In an effort to further assist lead agencies and operators, DMR is making available a summary checklist of reclamation plan requirements, organized by topic (i.e. geologic requirements, revegetation requirements, etc.). Please visit the Forms page for more information.
Changes to the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act Enacted
On April 18, 2016, Governor Brown signed
SB 209 (Pavley) and
AB 1142 (Gray) into law and thereby enacted significant changes to SMARA. For more information please see the
Department’s press release regarding these recent changes.
Summary of Changes to SMARA