HARRISBURG, Pa., June 28, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Governor Tom Corbett today announced that the Department of Environmental Protection has awarded $1.65 million in Mine Map Grants to seven recipients, including six of the state's universities.
"These grants create an important partnership with higher education, develop a skilled workforce for the energy sector, and continue to ensure a safe working environment for Pennsylvania's miners," Corbett said.
The Mine Map Grant Program provides funding to learning institutions and incorporated nonprofit organizations to process mine maps and mine data into electronic formats that can be used in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and other computer applications. The grants will also provide funding for mine map and document restoration and preservation.
The grant-funded projects will georeference 7,200 maps, digitize 3,100 maps, scan 26,900 maps, and restore or preserve 259 maps.
Once the maps are digitized, they will be uploaded to DEP's Mine Map Atlas—an online database of more than 15,000 mine maps that allows users to search for an area based on an address or latitude and longitude. Users can view the atlas from three perspectives: terrain, topographic or bird's-eye.
The projects funded by the Mine Map Grant Program will enhance the quality, quantity and delivery of mining information to the millions of residents living in Pennsylvania's mining regions. The grant program also gives learning institutions and nonprofits the opportunity to train individuals in the use of the emerging geospatial technologies.
The Mine Map Grant Program is financed by Pennsylvania Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act funds, which come from coal mining license and permit fees and penalties, as well as state Mine Subsidence Insurance funds and the Acid Mine Drainage Abatement Fund.
For more information, visit www.dep.state.pa.us, keyword: Mine Map Grants.
Media contact: Amanda Witman, 717-787-1323
Editor's note: The seven organizations that were awarded grants are listed below with the funding amount.
California University of Pennsylvania, $85,934
Eastern Pennsylvania Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation, $321,968
Harrisburg Area Community College, $122,101
Harrisburg University of Science and Technology, $299,534
Indiana University of Pennsylvania Research Institute, $484,631
Saint Vincent College, $110,832
University of Pittsburgh, $225,000
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection