$10 million in revitalization funding is now available to repurpose and restore mined land in Southwest Virginia coal communities

On February 2, 2021 in Virginia, the application period opened for the fourth round of funding through the Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Pilot Program.

Economic development grants totaling $10 million are available for projects in Southwest Virginia that restore and repurpose abandoned mine land and revitalize the region’s economy.

Virginia’s Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (DMME) administers the grants funded through the federal Pilot Program.

Projects must reclaim historic mining features, and those that promote innovative renewable energy solutions, agricultural advancements, and the revitalization of historically disadvantaged communities will receive top priority.

Projects completed with the funds will not only be designed to revitalize the economy of Southwest Virginia’s coalfields but will also restore the natural environment and advance the Commonwealth’s clean energy goals.

All projects selected must receive approval from the federal Office of Surface Mining and Reclamation Enforcement.

Virginia is one of six states selected to administer this pilot program for economic development projects that develop AML sites. DMME received the initial $10 million in 2017, 2018, and 2019 and selected numerous projects each year. The funding comes from the Pilot Program, which was part of the federal Omnibus Funding Bill.

Those looking for places to propose projects can find an AML inventory on the DMME website that lists locations and features for each site. DMME will receive applications through April 1, 2021.

Photo via Adobe Stock.

Applications and information can be found on the DMME website and should be submitted electronically to Tarah.Kesterson@dmme.virginia.gov.

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