Authors: Wen, B; Zhou, J-W; Zhang, L-M

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Wen, B, Zhou, J-W & Zhang, L-M 2016, 'Appropriate thickness and medium of covering soil on land reclamation in a coal mining subsidence area', in AB Fourie & M Tibbett (eds), Mine Closure 2016: Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Mine Closure, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 161-171,

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Coal mining impacts land resources and lowers the environmental quality which has led to a focus on ecological reclamation in mining areas. This study aimed to find a new method for land reclamation of mining subsidence areas and also provide a reference for land reclamation in these mining areas. The study method initially conducted an eco-geological survey at the mining subsidence area in Zoucheng city. Data collected from the survey was used to link plants and their underground habitats. Data was collected through stringent ecological procedures. The appropriate thickness and medium characteristics of covering soil were determined by the theory of plant below-ground habitat. The study results showed that the appropriate thickness of covering soil in the Zoucheng coal mining subsidence area was 30 cm for herbages; 50 cm for emergent aquatic plants; 70 cm for moisture-proof trees; and 90 cm for drought-proof trees. Furthermore, surface soils with depth of 0–30 cm were suitable cover mediums, and local subsoil could be used as a cover medium after applying artificial fertilisers.

Keywords: coal mining subsidence area; land reclamation; plant below-ground habitat; thickness of covering soil

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