Celebrating over 25 Years of Mine Land Reclamation, Conservation, & Economic Development in the Wyoming Valley
Earth Conservancy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the impacts of historical coal mining practices in northeastern Pennsylvania. Our focus: reclamation, conservation, and economic revitalization. In 1992, supported by Congressman Paul E. Kanjorski, leaders from area businesses, colleges, nonprofits, and communities joined together to address the lands of the Blue Coal Corporation, which had declared bankruptcy in the mid-1970s. Generally located to the west of Wilkes-Barre, many of these 16,000 acres situated among the small villages and boroughs have mostly been ignored, the mine-scarred land seen only as permanent eyesores and reminders of the past. Earth Conservancy, however, views them as an opportunity for growth, progress, and transformation. After obtaining $14 million in grants and an additional $2 million in private loans, EC purchased the Blue Coal lands in 1994. After the sale was finalized, Earth Conservancy began working to return the lands to productive use.
Vision & Mission
In 2004, Earth Conservancy’s Board of Directors developed the following vision and mission statements to guide its work.
Vision: Earth Conservancy will lead our communities in the reclamation of mine-scarred lands and streams, returning strong economic, environmental, and social value to the region by creating a well-planned vibrant valley, protected by green ridgetops.
Mission: Earth Conservancy is a nonprofit organization committed to the reclamation and return of 16,000 acres of former coal company-owned land to the region. It collaborates with local communities, government agencies, education institutions, and the private sector to spearhead the creation and implementation of plans that restore the land’s economic, recreational, residential, and ecological value.
To fulfill its mission, Earth Conservancy
1. Develops sustainable land-use plans
2. Commits to provide 10,000 acres for recreation and open space
3. Leads reclamation efforts of mine-scarred lands and water resources and guides their reutilization
4. Funds its work through the sale of Conservancy land and other resources, and through public and private sector partners
5. Partners with local communities to achieve our mission
6. Educates the community-at-large on environmental issues, the benefits of reclamation, and effective land-use planning