Mining of minerals, sand and gravel in proximity to wetland systems poses serious and lasting threats to the health of these important natural resources. Such threats include erosion from mining sites and roads, spill and leakage of toxic byproducts of the mining process and use of clean water to support mining processes. The adverse effects of these impacts of mining degrade water quality, silt over stream beds and spawning sites, alter habitat for aquatic insects, enable invasive species and ultimately reduce fishery biodiversity and health.
Mining activities generally are still regulated under the General Mining Act of 1872. So, it is especially important that we monitor permit applications for proposed mines that may be located near sensitive habitats supporting fish and wildlife.