DNR won’t allow mining in Glendale area after uproar

DNR won’t allow mining in Glendale area after uproar

Despite the discovery of ”a viable coal reserve” at Glendale Fish and Wildlife Area in southern Indiana, it’s not going anywhere.

Department of Natural Resources director Rob Carter announced Thursday that strip mining of the coal will not be allowed because it lacked public support.

The DNR granted Black Beauty Coal Company permission to conduct exploratory drilling at Glendale, which was acquired using federal funding dedicated to fish and wildlife habitat restoration and preservation.

Former DNR director Kyle Hupfer said at the time that any proceeds from mining would be used to purchase additional fish and wildlife habitat, but the overwhelming majority of people who attended an Oct. 11 meeting opposed mining the area.

DNR officials reported Thursday the lack of public backing resulted in Carter’s announcement.

”The thought of such a proposal walked into a buzz saw more than two months ago when word got out that there was a possibility this could occur,” Rep. David Crooks, D-Washington, told the Evansville Courier & Press. ”It was just an unpopular idea with most people, unless you were a coal miner.”

Crooks’ district includes Glendale.

Carter, who replaced Hupfer on Dec. 1, decided to scuttle the mining plan despite the finding by Black Beauty of a ”substantial” amount of coal on the Glendale property. Any mining would have required approval by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

”There appears to be a viable coal reserve in the area of Glendale where the exploration was conducted,” Carter said. ”However, as Gov. (Mitch) Daniels and Director Hupfer said this fall, for actual mining to take place, there needed to be both local support and support from hunters and fisherman around the state for us to go forward. That support never materialized.”

Carter said efforts to expand state public land holdings preserved for hunting and fishing would continue, using other means than profits from coal mining.

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