The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality's Division of Energy, Mineral, and Land Resources (DEMLR) has issued a mining permit for the Carolina Sunrock - Prospect Hill facility, covering 630 acres in Caswell County.
After thoroughly considering comments received during the public engagement process, including a public hearing held in November 2019, DEMLR has issued the permit with operational limits.
Conditions of Mining Permit 17-02 were based upon the Mining Act of 1971, and include provisions related to wastewater and stormwater discharge, air quality and dust control, blasting, ground and surface water monitoring, and buffers between the operation and any surrounding waterways. No on-site disposal of waste generated outside of the mining boundary is allowed without seeking permission from DEMLR. Additional stipulations include:
- Monitoring baseline groundwater levels for 30 days prior to excavation and one year prior to pit dewatering. If any mining-related impacts occur in private water supply wells, the permittee will implement the mitigation plan which requires potable water supply to be provided to impacted properties.
- Monitoring of streams and wetlands using gauges and piezometers, with any lowered water levels requiring a mitigation plan for Division approval.
The mining permit was contingent on the issuance of an air quality permit. In 2020, the Division of Air Quality (DAQ) denied the permit application after modeling found that the facility would violate both the nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) beyond the property boundary. Carolina Sunrock LLC submitted a new application to demonstrate compliance with NAAQS. DAQ issued the approved air permit in October 2021.
The final permits, final permit reviews and hearing officer reports can be found on the Mining Program website.