State commission permits mine construction - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

State commission permits mine construction

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

By Emily Luxen

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The Alabama Surface Mining Commission has issued a permit to Shepherd Bend, LLC to begin mining the first portion of Shepherd Bend Mine. The mine will be located along the Mulberry Fork of the Black Warrior River just south of Cordova.The Alabama Surface Mining Commission has issued a permit to Shepherd Bend, LLC to begin mining the first portion of Shepherd Bend Mine.

The first part of the mine will be 34 acres. In order to expand, Shepherd Bend will have to obtain leases from other property owners, including the University of Alabama System.

The mine has been the subject of much debate among those who live nearby and University of Alabama students.  Opponents said the mine's close proximity to a Birmingham Water Works tank could hurt the quality of drinking water for thousands of residents, and hinder economic development in the area. But, supporters said the project would bring an economic boost to the area.

There is no timetable for construction to begin.

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