All of the mining activities listed below have State of Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Mine Permits. In addition, the Barretts Minerals and Graymont Western mines have completed Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) permitting requirements separate from the DEQ permit. RMA has provided mine permitting services to the following mining firms:
- Ash Grove Cement Company, Montana City, MT. – DEQ permits, amendments, annual reports and water testing.
- Badger Materials, Townsend, MT – DEQ permit amendment.
- Barretts Minerals Inc., Dillon, MT. – DEQ/BLM permit, amendments, and annual reports.
- Elkhorn Golden Dream, Boulder, MT. – DEQ permit and environmental assessment.
- Graymont Western US Inc. (formerly Continental Lime Inc.), Townsend, MT. – DEQ/BLM permits, amendments and annual reports.
- Holcim (US) Inc., Black Butte and Geyser Mine, MT. – DEQ permits after exploration permit.
- Noble Excavating, Inc., Libby, MT. – DEQ permit after small miner exclusion.
- Schumaker Trucking and Excavating, Great Falls, MT – DEQ permit.
Regarding the Graymont Indian Creek Mine RMA has provided services continuously since 1991. These include annual weed spraying, reclamation design and tasks, annual report preparation and water quality testing services. Additional services such as mine exploration support, storm water basin design and construction, fencing, mine bench survey, road building, topsoil salvage, facility construction, etc. have been provided upon request of the Graymont plant manager.
RMA has also provided annual report services to Ash Grove Cement Company and Barretts Minerals. These annual reports with supporting documents and maps are submitted to the DEQ. RMA continues to have a collegial working relationship with the DEQ staff which has helped to clarify and resolve issues related to mine permitting, mine reclamation, mine inspections, and annual reports.
In the area of remediation support services RMA has provided Graymont with: kiln dust spill cleanup and disposal, underground fuel/gas tank removal and contaminated soil remediation. RMA successfully designed a reclamation cap over 8 acres of a kiln dust dump site. The steep slope on this area provided many challenges but it was successfully reclaimed. In addition RMA designed and operated an excavator bucket modification to load and remove kiln dust to a designated repository without excess dust emissions or opacity violations. RMA also removed several underground fuel/gas tanks; these tanks where cleaned and cut open for scrap. Contaminated soil was stored on a concrete pad mixed with uncontaminated soil and tilled until testing revealed no contamination remained.
Construction Support Services
In the area of construction support services RMA has a proven track record of projects in this area. In 2005 RMA staff designed and built over 12 miles of road for Graymont’s South Claims Exploration Drilling Project. This project was meant to verify the ore body over 1000 acres of new claims area. A Site Safety Officer was provided by RMA to direct the contract driller (Boart Longyear Inc.) in site specific safety training and daily safety meetings. RMA provided a dozer operator to construct the exploration roads and move drill steel and pumps through steep and very rocky terrain often over 100% slopes. This project took 3 months and was completed without incident. In 2010 Graymont again used RMA to oversee their exploration drilling project on their claims area. Similar services where provided with RMA again providing a competent Site Safety Officer and supplied a water truck driver who maintained the water supply, pumps, hose and developed access roads.
In the area of reclamation support services RMA has designed, built and managed over 100 acres of reclamation for Graymont. RMA has worked closely with the state DEQ to develop successful reclamation strategies for reproducing the unique vegetation and landscape found in the limestone ridge formations west of Townsend, MT. The key winter forage for mule deer in this area is curl leaf mount mahogany (Cercocarpus ledifolius). This is a very tough plant to reproduce in a landscape form. It only reproduces every 7 years, does not compete well and is heavily browsed at all life stages. Through multiple test plots, native seed collection, slope composition experiments and close coordination with the DEQ, RMA has developed a successful reclamation strategy. The first acres of reclamation in mount mahogany habitat at Graymont were released from bond in 2011. RMA has experience in every step of the reclamation process from pre-mine soil stripping to post mine weed control.
The control of invasive and noxious weeds are key to successful reclamation. A weed management program includes site reconnaissance, identification of weeds and source, selection of control methods, time of control application and monitoring for effectiveness.
We provide horse pack and utility terrain vehicle (UTV) weed spraying services. Horse pack weed spraying allows weed control in areas where an UTV mounted sprayer would have difficulty with the terrain. Also, it more efficient than using backpack sprayers.