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BLM Eastern States, Office of External Affairs
Release Date: 06/08/12
Contacts: Bob Gillcash , 703-440-1704 ,

BLM Announces Availability of Final Land Use Analysis and Environmental Impact Statement for East Lynn Lake Coal Leases

Plans enable BLM to hold competitive coal lease sale with protections for lake, dam
Washington, D.C. – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today published in the Federal Register the Notice of Availability for the Final Land Use Analysis and Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for East Lynn Lake Coal Leases in Wayne County, W.V.
In response to two lease applications to develop federal coal near East Lynn Lake, the BLM prepared a land use analysis and environmental impact statement that, under the preferred alternative, outlines a process by which the BLM can hold a competitive federal coal lease sale. The two pending applications propose to mine 13,089 acres of federal coal by underground mining methods from two existing deep mine shafts on adjacent private land the using room and pillar mining method. A competitive leasing process would be open to all qualified bidders, and any winning proposals would undergo geological study and risk assessment analysis of the buffer before any operations could begin. 
In cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, and the Office of Surface Mining, the BLM has identified several requirements for any proposed coal mining in the area. In order to ensure the structural integrity of the East Lynn Lake dam structure and the lake’s recreation area, the land use plan and final EIS specify that no mining will be done beneath East Lynn Lake and the dam, or within 1,585 feet of the dam. Additionally, a minimum of 100 feet of overlying material will be maintained and a minimum of a 200-foot-buffer around the lake will be established through a geological study and risk assessment analysis.
“Today’s announcement is the result of a productive dialogue with the public, the State of West Virginia, Office of Surface Mines, and the Army Corps of Engineers to ensure that we are taking a balanced approach to developing a key resource in our nation’s energy portfolio and ensuring the integrity of the lake’s dam and natural resources,” said State Director John Lyon. “The next step is for BLM to issue a decision on the proposal before moving forward with a competitive lease sale.”

For more information, on the East Lynn Lake project, select this link:

For links to the Final Enviornmental Impact Statement documents, including maps and data, select this link:

Link to the Federal Register notice:

Printed copies of the Final Land Use Analysis and Final Environmental Impact Statement for the East Lynn Lake Coal Lease by Applications will be available beginning June 8, 2012, at the following locations:
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
502 Eight Street
Huntington, West Virginia 25701
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
East Lynn Lake Visitor Center
East Lynn, West Virginia 25512
Wayne County Library
325 Keyser Street
Wayne, West Virginia 25570
Copies may be requested by mail at:   
Bureau of Land Management – Northeastern States Field Office
Attention, Kurt Wadzinski, Project Manager
626 East Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 200
Milwaukee, WI, 53202

Copies may be requested by email at:

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Last updated: 03-12-2013