Geology and Land Reclamation

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Expansion of the population in the periphery of urban centers creates increased need for land for food, housing, recreation, and waste disposal. As much of land is occupied, derelict lands such as floodplains, swamps and bogs, abandoned mineral workings, and steep slopes are subjected to reclamation. Reclamation of wetlands for agriculture in north-central United States is accomplished simply by land drainage. Reclamation of derelict land (wetlands, floodplains, stripped land and quarries, and landslide-prone slopes) for municipal, industrial, or residential needs requires study by environmentally oriented scientists as well as engineers, to prevent environmental disruption. In Illinois and Ohio, reclamation or intensive use of some derelict lands has precipitated problems of flooding, surface-water pollution, ground-water pollution, and landslides. Study of the geology and hydrology of the area considered for reclamation prior to construction is highly desirable for making more effective reclamation and for deciding on the best land use after reclamation. Low-intensity land uses such as parks on floodplains, agriculture in old strip-mined areas, and ski runs on unstable slopes may be, at least for the present, the highest value land-uses available for these sites.


Author Institution: Department of Geology, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio 44242



The Ohio Journal of Science. v72 n2 (March, 1972), 65-75