Cemex to shut down last US coastal mine

By |  June 28, 2017

The California Coastal Commission reached a proposed settlement agreement with Cemex to shut down sand extraction at the company’s Marina, California-based mine by the end of 2020, reports Monterey County Now.

The California Coastal Commission threatened to issue a cease-and-desist order against the mining operation in March 2016.

According to Monterey County Now, the mine is the last remaining coastal sand mine in the United States, and scientists believe it’s causing an average of about 4 ft. of erosion annually from the Salinas River to Monterey.

The settlement agreement will be presented to the Coastal Commission for approval July 13 at the commission’s monthly meeting. The agreement will allow Cemex to continue sand extraction up to 177,000 cu. yd. per year until the end of 2020, which is about a 30 percent decrease from what the operation is currently mining, the California Coastal Commission says.

In addition, per the proposed agreement, Cemex will have to restore the 400-acre property and sell it at a reduced price to a Coastal Commission-approved nonprofit or government agency. If Cemex fails to hit its restoration benchmarks, it will be fined $10,000 per day, regardless of whether the violations are later remediated, Monterey County Now adds.

“Cemex always strives to be a good neighbor and address the concerns of people in the communities in which we live and operate,” the company said in a statement. “To that end, Cemex has agreed to phase out the [Marina sand mine] operation over the coming years.”

The city of Marina has already approved the agreement.

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