Nevada ARRA Projects

<< return to Nevada ARRA homepage

Nevada Abandoned Mine Lands Biological and Cultural Surveys

Project Surveys Abandoned Mines for Cultural and Wildlife Features 

: Survey abandoned mines for cultural and wildlife features worthy of preservation. The result of the surveys will be recommendations for closure methods which preserve these features in the most efficient and economical manner.

ARRA Funding Level: $601,000


February 2, 2011: $600,496 obligated, $97,432 spent. Bat surveys have been completed. The archaeological survey was completed in September 2010.  The plant survey will be started in the spring 2011. 

May 2011: Plant surveys are being conducted. As soon as the plant surveys are completed, the work will begin.

Contracts: The project is funded through a $600,000 interagency agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The plant survey contract was awarded to Beck Environmental of Las Vegas. The bat survey contract was awarded to Holistic Wildlife Surveys of Hampton, Virginia. The archaeological survey contract was awarded to Statistical Research Inc. of Tucson, Arizona.

Completion date target: July 30, 2011

Jobs: The work will be done under contract with 4-6 professionals and 8-12 university students from appropriate disciplines.

Benefits and Needs: Thousands of historic abandoned mines are scattered throughout Nevada. These abandoned mines can be hard to see for off-highway vehicle recreations and can be an attractive, dangerous nuisance for hikers and other outdoor recreationists.

Background: Abandoned mines are among the most recognizable and attractive national icons of the western landscape and many of them are also habitat for bats and other valued wildlife.  Nevada contains thousands of abandoned mines from the 1800s and early 1900s when miners simply walked away. The BLM is working with the state of Nevada to locate these sites, and to prioritize the remediation and securing of these sites. Mining companies today are required to reclaim mine sites when activities are completed. Location and remediation of abandoned mines on public lands is a national priority for both the Department of the Interior and the BLM.