Post-mining land approved for WMA
By Michael Johnson, Editor
The North Dakota Supreme Court upheld the Aug. 24, 2010, North Dakota Public Service Commission's decision approving the post-mining land use change of 86 acres at the Falkirk Mine in McLean County, North Dakota near Coal Lake, Underwood. This decision will allow for the creation of a Wildlife Management Area to be managed by the North Dakota Game and Fish Department as well as aid the North Dakota Department of Transportation in its mitigation of no-mow acres along highway rights-of-ways. The 86 acres are a small portion of about 730 acres being released near the Coal Lake area, east of Underwood. The 86 acres within the land transfer from agriculture and industrial to recreation was appealed by the Dakota Resource Council, which stands by the standard of returning all agriculture land back to agriculture land after mining has been done. The group claims that changing it from ag land to recreation is not of equal or higher use.