SMARA Program Support
The California Surface Mining and Reclamation Act (SMARA) recognizes that mineral extraction is essential to the state economy and society while reclamation of those mined lands provides for environmental protection and subsequent beneficial uses. Land use regulation, including SMARA compliance, is overseen at the local government level. When a lead agency’s SMARA compliance program is comprehensive, both the mining industry and the community benefit.
Benchmark Resources has unique expertise meeting SMARA mandates. We have provided SMARA compliance services to more than 60% of the counties in California via application development, environmental analysis, processing assistance, and inspections since the mid-1980s.
We have prepared and reviewed hundreds of reclamation plans. Our work is tailored to meet SMARA obligations while respecting both the lead agencies’ and the operators’ time and resources. We have the technical expertise to evaluate all of the technical engineering, safety, and environmental protection aspects of the statute and regulations, including:
- Wildlife habitat
- Endangered species
- Slope stability
- Engineering and erosion control
- Agricultural productivity
- Surface water
Benchmark Resources processes reclamation plans, reviews financial assurances, performs annual inspections, generates operator reports, performs lead agency administrative processes, and assists with enforcement.