Speakers and Presentations in no particular order.  Please see the Program Page for their scheduled time slots. Not all speakers had a digital presentation file to upload.

Keynote Address: Glenn Rider, PA DEP Bureau of Conservation and Restoration

Lunch & Speaker: Peter Stern, Aviator and Aerial landscape photographer of PA Coal Region

Jon Smoyer P.G., PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), “Hydrogen Peroxide- Review of its Role as Part of a Mine Drainage Treatment Strategy”

Hydrogen Peroxide has been used to oxidize and remove ferrous iron from mine drainage for decades. It is a relatively inexpensive and effective oxidant that can be used to achieve rapid ferrous iron oxidation in many active and semi-passive mine drainage treatment systems. This presentation outlines the physical properties, concentrations, and available delivery options for hydrogen peroxide.

Ed Schroth, Duquesne University Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, “The Science of Wingfield Pines”

The ecological and cultural transformation of Wingfield Pines Conservation Area (WPCA)  is a watershed achievement in land and AMD water reclamation efforts in the Greater Pittsburgh Area.   “The Science of Wingfield Pines” is a  story of the science research conducted, data collected and analyzed.  The graphs and conclusions are good science which illustrate  the many synergistic concepts discussed in our aquatic textbooks.

Scott Alexander with Malcolm Crittenden and Robert Ryder, PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), “Instream Limestone Sand Dosing in the Allegheny Plateau”

Attendees will learn of the successful recovery of trout populations in low-buffered,
acidic streams by the use of alkaline treatments.  Documented low-cost/long term trout restoration methods such as (ILS) may be useful for other watersheds dealing with stream acidification because several high cost alternatives have been proposed in Pennsylvania which on analysis may deliver far less stream-alkalinity per dollar.

Sandra McSurdy, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), “Treating Flowback Water with Acid Mine Drainage (AMD) for Reuse in Shale Gas Activities”

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh and the U. S. DOE are developing a treatment for flowback water utilizing AMD. Treating and reusing flowback water on-site will reduce the amount of freshwater needed and the amount of wastewater that needs to be hauled by truck. Sulfate removal tests were performed on flowback and AMD water mixtures with a goal to achieve a final sulfate concentration of less than 100 mg/L for reuse.

Jill Burrows Ph.D. Candidate, Lehigh University, “Geochemical and Hydrologic Controls on Abandoned Coal Mine Discharge”

Water samples were collected from 23 Coal Mine Discharges (CMDs) in the summer and fall of 2012 in the anthracite coal region of Pennsylvania to evaluate the changes in geochemistry and hydrology over time by comparing the results to studies conducted on the same discharges in 1975, 1991, and 1999 by the U.S. Geological Survey. Geochemical modeling was used to establish a timeline for inorganic pyrite dissolution.

Collin Lennox, ECOISLANDS, LLC., “Fe and Mn Reclamation using BioHaven® Wetland Reactors, Results from 2012”

The study involves the use of synthetic wetlands placed in a 4ftx8ftx2ft tall wooden box reactor through which a pre-treated influent of impacted AMD water is passed.  The synthetic wetlands are made of inert plastic and act as a growth substrate for heterogeneous wild biofilm colonies that remediate Iron precipitate and Manganese Oxides. Two units were placed at PA AMD sites, and will be covered as case studies.

Terry Schmidt P.E., Skelly and Loy, “Variability of Coal Mine Drainage in Pennsylvania Resulting from Coal Mining Practices and Geology”

Mining methods employed can have a significant impact on resulting mine drainage characteristics. Also, the hydrologic regime and the individual coal seams as well as the geology above and directly below. These factors in combination can affect coal mine drainage quality in a variety of ways and will be reviewed with site specific examples within the primary coal regions of Pennsylvania.

Bernie McGurl, Lackawanna River Corridor Association (LRCA), “Lower Lackawanna River Corridor Watershed Restoration Assessment Plan”

The confluence of the Lackawanna with the Susquehanna River has been described as the largest and most visible point source of pollution in the entire Chesapeake Bay Watershed. The LRCA and EPCAMR authored a plan that makes a series of recommendations for AMD and AML reclamation and reuse, economic development, transportation improvements, flood protection, and natural resource conservation and recreation.

Tom Clark, Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC), “Interactive Web-Based Mine Drainage Data Portal”

The SRBC Drainage Data Portal will allow users to search available data, download county and/or watershed water quality data reports, analyze water quality trends, and screen discharges depending on selected parameters and concentrations. The latter should be specifically helpful to potential industrial users being encouraged to seek out the use of lesser quality water as opposed to clean stream water for a variety of needs.

This is only a preview, see the full site at:

Tim Danahey, BioMost, “Passive Aeration Using a Trompe

Water aeration is needed at many mine drainage treatment facilities to oxidize ferrous iron or to remove dissolved carbon dioxide.  Typical aeration accomplished through surface diffusion, cascade aeration, mechanical aeration, or with chemical reagents such as hydrogen peroxide.  Using an ancient device known as a Trompe, it is possible to achieve the benefits of mechanical aeration without the need for electricity, motors, or any moving parts.

Eric Null, Conemaugh Valley Conservancy (CVC), “Benthic Macroinvertebrate as Indicators of Mine Drainage Impacts and Recovery Efforts”

Benthic macroinvertebrates have been used as water quality indicators for decades, but significant weight on the information that they provide has only occurred in recent years. Their communities provide a historic look at water quality due to their inability to seek refuge during times of pollution episodes. Correlating acid impacts with these “stream bugs” requires a much deeper look into the communities than some standard metrics allow.

Matt Hughes, Bucknell University,  “Working with the Press”

The presentation will give community groups insight on HOW to get your point across in PRINT. What do you want to say during a phone interview?  How can you get a photographer to a site with the reporter? How much information is too much?  These are all the insider perspectives from a media communications writer that has covered and written dozens of stories on AMD and watershed restoration.  Examples of what should be provided to reporters as a handout.  

John Welsh and Alana Mauger, New Media,”Huber Breaker Photography”

The historical importance of the Huber Coal Breaker is told through online video, photography and web based commentary with journalistic insight to demonstrate the methods to create content and give insight about how organizations deliver their message through social media, online video, web presence and how to utilize crowdsourcing to reach the intended audiences to support projects through funding and volunteerism.

Robert Maiden, PA Association of Conservation Districts, and Terry Fisher, Pennsylvania Infrastructure and Investment Authority (PENNVEST), “PACD’s Work in the AMR Community”

Presentation will speak to the work the Districts conduct with watershed groups in Pennsylvania as well as support PACD provides to groups such as EPCAMR and WPCAMR to advance clean water, restored lands and sediment reduction across the state. Finally, the presentation will conclude with information provided regarding the PENNVEST program and how available funding can support AMR projects PA

Bob Onyshko, Harsco Minerals, “Harsco Mineral CSA: A Sustainable Solution to Acidic Water from Refuse Piles & Abandoned Mine Sites”

Paul Coyle, Office of Surface Mine Reclamation and Enforcement, (OSMRE), “National Mine Map Repository”

Andy McAllister, WPCAMR, and Amy Wolfe, Trout Unlimited, “The need for Federal Environmental Good Samaritan Legislation”

Holly Cairns, PA PA Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Environmental Advocate

Lawrence V. Ruane, Department of Environmental Protection ”Mine Subsidence Insurance Program”

Brent Means, OSM, “Walking through the New AMD Treat Software”