Launching Reclaiming the Sierra 2015 – registration open & papers released

Early Bird Registration Open!

Early bird registration is now open for The Sierra Fund’s third conference, Reclaiming the Sierra 2015:  The New Gold Rush, a conference to address historic mining impacts. 

In addition to registration, the conference website includes:

The Sierra Fund’s bi-annual conference, hosted at the heart of the glitter and devastation of what was California’s original Gold Rush, is the state’s primary venue for collaboration and action around addressing the ongoing effects of historic mining.

This outcomes-oriented event draws hundreds of people who are leaders in their field including policymakers, landowning and regulatory agencies, scientific researchers, water quality experts, reclamation firms, mining industry, public health specialists, and environmental advocates.

Conference Issue Papers Released

Reclaiming the Sierra 2015 is designed to be an event that produces action. 

The Sierra Fund has developed four “Issue Papers” that distill the background and opportunities for action on four priority topics that will be featured at the conference:

  • Prioritizing abandoned mine sites for cleanup
  • Evaluating cleanup techniques and technologies
  • Identifying and incentivizing multiple benefits of mine cleanup
  • Coordinating state and federal agency action

Click here to review the papers associated with each track.

These papers are released as the first of a series of versions that will be modified and updated , leading up to the event itself.  They will frame the discussion at the event, that will shape the conference products, four corresponding “action” documents that will be presented to the four conference committees.

Committee members who will receive the product of the conference include leaders in federal, state and local government, California small businesses, mining companies and environmental activists, and top scientists.  They range from EPA Region 9 Administrator Jared Blumenfeld, to California Secretary for Resources John Laird, State Water Resources Control Board member Felicia Marcus, and international fair mined minerals activist Greg Valerio.

Conference speakers at this time include:

  • Greg Valerio, international fair trade gold activist, England
  • Jared Blumenfeld, EPA Region 9 Administrator*
  • Michael Singer, Researcher, University of St. Andrews, Scotland*
  • John Laird, California Secretary for Resources*
  • Mark Nechodom, California Department of Conservation Director
  • Glenda Marsh, Office of Mine Reclamation Abandoned Mine Lands Unit
  • Toby Minear, US Geological Survey
  • Charles Alpers, Research Chemist, US Geological Survey
  • Carol DiGiorgio, Department of Water Resources
  • Dave Chambers, Geophysicist, Center for Science in Public Participation*
  • William Craven, Chief Consultant to Senate Natural Resources Committee

*indicates a speaker who has expressed interest in presenting, but has not yet confirmed availability. 

For more information about the conference program, to read the conference Issue Papers, review speakers and committee members, or register, visit

Reclaiming the Sierra 2015 sponsors include:

Click here for information on becoming a conference sponsor.