UWB Crest

TWIRLS: Treating Waste for Restoring Land Sustainability

Site Restorations - Colliery site - Woolley Colliery

Woolley Colliery was  restored during the 1970’s using contemporary methods of the time but was unsuccessful and has been recently revisited and new restoration efforts have been made. The site has been recently restored for agricultural end-use by Envar, an environmental consultancy, using organic wastes including paper fibre supplied by our partners UPM. Envar allowed us access to sample and undertake our own vegetation and soil surveys. The site provided the opportunity to compare areas within the colliery restored five years ago, with/out an added a ‘soil’ veneer. This site was interesting to TWIRLS as it offered colliery spoil remediation and compared out-moded with up-to-date restoration technologies.

Woolley Colliery restoration (Fig. 1) is managed by Envar. We monitoring the use of a single application of biosolids and paper sludge wastes to reclaim acid generating colliery shale to agricultural land. Amending acid colliery spoil with paper fibre waste and manure improves soil pH from <3 to 7 initially and has a sustainable effect in the longer term to aid plant establishment (Fig. 2).

Fig .1. Woolley Colliery restored site in 2006 undergoing final landforming.

Fig. 2. Effect of amending acid colliery spoil with paper fibre waste and manure on soil pH over time.