Arkansas has reserves of bituminous, semi anthracite, and lignite coal. The bituminous and semi anthracite coal reserves are estimated to be about 2.2 billion tons, half of which is considered recoverable. Coal mining has been concentrated in west-central Arkansas. Prior to the 1950s, much of the coal was extracted by underground mining methods. Surface mining then dominated until 2008 when underground production again surpassed surface production. Surface remining to remove coal pillars left in shallow underground mines and recovering coal from old mine waste piles has been common.
Regulation and Reclamation
The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), Surface Mining and Reclamation Division, has responsibility for SMCRA activities related to active coal mines (Title V) and SMCRA activities related to abandoned coal mines (Title IV) in the State of Arkansas.
An example of ADEQ’s effectiveness and efficiency is the AML project located in Sebastian County. The project successfully eliminated three acres of dangerous gob piles, several feet of embankments, and one vertical opening. By incorporating a forfeited pit as a disposal area, ADEQ was able to reduce the amount of reclamation required by 10 acres.
Abandoned Mine Lands (Title IV) Regulatory (Title V) State Program Links Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality Coal Program
Arkansas grant reports and related documents are contained in the official grant file maintained at the:
501 Belle Street, Suite 215
Alton, IL 62002
Telephone: (618) 463-6460
Fax: (618) 463-6470
They can be reviewed during normal business hours. Alternatively, these documents can be requested through the Tulsa Field Office and a copy of the grant file will be made available. The copy may be requested in paper or electronic format.
What is Oversight?
OSMRE defines "oversight", as the "process of evaluating and assisting states [and tribes] in the administration, implementation, and maintenance of approved programs. In collaboration with each state/tribe, OSMRE develops a Performance Agreement/Evaluation Plan tailored to the unique conditions of each state/tribe program. Performance Agreements/Evaluation Plans between OSM and the states establish how oversight is conducted during each evaluation year.
Learn more about OSMRE's National Oversight Program.
To view oversight documents visit, OSMRE's REG-8 Oversight Database: