Reclaiming Marsh Lake

Multi-year Project Underway in Ohio District

The Ohio Aggregates and Industrial Minerals Association (OAIMA) has awarded Martin Marietta the 2015 Outstanding Reclamation in Progress Award for its efforts at Marsh Lake, a body of water near Fairfield Sand & Gravel.

Matt McCoy, a senior geologist in the Mideast Division’s Ohio District, said the Company is in the early stages of a multi-year project to fully reclaim the land surrounding the lake, which sits on a Company-owned parcel that hasn’t been active in some time.

Much of the work done to this point has entailed removing sand piles and excavating, resoiling and grading certain sections of the grounds. While the project is considered inexpensive by the Company’s standards, reclamation is a time-consuming process.

McCoy said each part of the project must closely adhere to the standards set out by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). While meeting state requirements, the Company also must work closely with county and city officials to make sure their concerns are addressed. Additionally, it will take at least two years for vegetation to be reestablished.

David Goldsmith, assistant plant manager at Elizabethtown Sand & Gravel, completed much of the excavation work at the site and said it was not an easy process.

“You’ve really got to be careful when you’re pushing sand into a lake,” he said. “There’s nothing solid beneath the dozer and you don’t want to end up driving it into the water.”

Patrick Jacomet, executive director of OAIMA, hailed the Company’s work at the lake.

“OAIMA members like Martin Marietta take great pride in their reclamation activities, leaving an attractive and lasting legacy for future generations to enjoy and utilize,” he said. “Martin Marietta’s (site) in Fairfield, Ohio, is just one shining example of an OAIMA member’s efforts in reclamation.”

McCoy hopes the recent OAIMA award will be one of many earned at the site before the project’s completion, but said that he, his colleagues and Martin Marietta are driven to reclaim the lake for other reasons.

“I think when you’re in a natural resources-based industry like mining, farming or timber, you have a responsibility to be a good steward to the land,” McCoy said. “Like we do at all of our sites, we’ll restore this property so that we can pass it on in a productive state.”

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