Bay Area Clean Env't, Inc. v. Santa Clara CoAnnotate this Case
The Permanente Quarry is a 3,510-acre surface mining operation, producing limestone and aggregate for the manufacture of cement, in unincorporated Santa Clara County. The Quarry has been in existence since 1903. The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors conducted a review under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), Pub. Resources Code section 21000, certified an environmental impact report, and, in 2012, approved a reclamation plan amendment for closing and reclaiming the Quarry’s mining operations over a 20-year period. Opponents challenged the approval, asserting claims under the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act (SMARA), Pub. Resources Code section 2710, and CEQA. The trial court and court of appeal affirmed the approval, upholding a determination that the reclamation plan amendment satisfied SMARA’s regulatory standards for water quality and wildlife habitat. Statements by the Office of Mining Reclamation were properly considered by the county and provided substantial evidence to support the county’s findings. The county’s findings regarding the direct and indirect environmental impacts from the reclamation plan amendment were sufficient under CEQA.