Quarry rehabilitation : cliffs, landforms and ecology
Sherry E. Yundt, Lowe, S. B. (Sarah B.)
Over the last fifteen years major progress has been made to provide acceptable rehabilitation of quarries in various countries. Many stone quarries are located in scenic areas of natural beauty and this necessitates the best possible rehabilitation. After the stone has been extracted efforts are made to simulate natural landforms to blend the quarry faces into the surrounding landscape. The resulting naturalized cliffs and the quarry floors offer scenic value and also provide excellent habitats
... for a variety of vegetation and wildlife, including birds, snakes, butterflies and amphibians. In the U.K., the landform replication research conducted by the Limestone Research Group, with trial sites at the Hope and Tunstead quarries, was found to result in some faces that are unstable. This is primarily the result of limestone that is fragmented to start with. More recent research by ECUS Ltd. indicates that the ideal rehabilitated quarry uses the Rollover Concept. Several quarry operators in the U.K. are trying the Rollover Concept. At a super quarry in Scotland, the upper benches that may be visible will be sloped to the natural mountain grade and restored using peat and grass seed and the Rollover Concept. In Ontario, Canada legislation has required rehabilitation of stone faces to be sloped at 2:1 and completely revegetated. In the early 1990's Ontario quarry operators began looking at creating a landform that blends with the landscape and recognizes the ecological value of cliffs. The most critical factors in quarry rehabilitation are planning ahead so the most suitable landform and ecosystems are completed and staving at the leading edge of research and techniques. The examples outlined above recognize the value of cliffs in terms of visual interest and the ecological value of the rehabilitated landscape.