DEC taking comment on blast mining proposal
Greg Hudson is reporting in The Daily Mail the Department of Environmental Conservation is accepting comment from members of the public about a permit application to allow blast mining in Durham. The application was filed by the Teator Shale Mine on County Route 20 in Durham, as part of an application to expand the area of the mine by slightly more than half an acre. The shale mine has been open since 2007. In an interview, mine operator Ralph Borwegen said the permit would not increase the overall acreage of mining at the property. He said, “We’ll be shifting an area where we dispose of waste material.” The new area would be mined using a technique known as blast mining. In blast mining a hole is drilled into the shale and a charge of explosive is set. Darlene Downing, the former director of the Catskill Center for Conservation and Development, said the percussive waves from the blasts could potentially drive away the bald eagles recently reintroduced into the Greene County area. Downing said, “I know the family that runs the mine is an important and respected part of the community here, and there’s always tensions between personal economy and trying to make a living here, and the public interest and the beautiful, bucolic nature of our area. I just don’t like the idea of having open-air blasting here in Durham.” The DEC will accept public comment on the permit application until Friday. Comments can be submitted via email to R4DEP [at[ dec [dot] ny [dot] gov. Read the full story in The Daily Mail.