The Forestry Reclamation Approach

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Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative

The Forestry Reclamation Approach (FRA) is a method for reclaiming coal-mined land to forest under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA). The FRA is based on knowledge gained from both scientific research and experience (Photo 1). The FRA can achieve costeffective regulatory compliance for coal operators while creating productive forests that generate value for their owners and provide watershed protection, wildlife habitat, and other environmental services. The purpose of this Advisory is to describe the FRA, which is considered by state mining agencies and US Office of Surface Mining to be an appropriate and desirable method for reclaiming coal-mined land to support forested land uses under SMCRA (Angel and others, 2005). The FRA is also supported by members of the ARRI’s academic team, which is drawn from Universities in nine states, and by other groups and agencies.