U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Dec 08, 2019

§ 3715.0-5 - How are certain terms in this subpart defined?

As used in this subpart the term:

Mining laws means all laws that apply to mining of locatable minerals on public lands and which make public lands available for development of locatable minerals. This includes, but is not limited to, the general authorities relating to mining of locatable minerals or to the public lands on which this subpart is based and case law which interprets those authorities.

Mining operations means all functions, work, facilities, and activities reasonably incident to mining or processing of mineral deposits. It includes building roads and other means of access to a mining claim or millsite on public lands.

Occupancy means full or part-time residence on the public lands. It also means activities that involve residence; the construction, presence, or maintenance of temporary or permanent structures that may be used for such purposes; or the use of a watchman or caretaker for the purpose of monitoring activities. Residence or structures include, but are not limited to, barriers to access, fences, tents, motor homes, trailers, cabins, houses, buildings, and storage of equipment or supplies.

Permanent structure means a structure fixed to the ground by any of the various types of foundations, slabs, piers, poles, or other means allowed by building codes. The term also includes a structure placed on the ground that lacks foundations, slabs, piers, or poles, and that can only be moved through disassembly into its component parts or by techniques commonly used in house moving. The term does not apply to tents or lean-tos.

Public lands means lands open to the operation of the mining laws which BLM administers, including lands covered by unpatented mining claims or millsites.

Prospecting or exploration means the search for mineral deposits by geological, geophysical, geochemical, or other techniques. It also includes, but is not limited to, sampling, drilling, or developing surface or underground workings to evaluate the type, extent, quantity, or quality of mineral values present.

Reasonably incident means the statutory standard “prospecting, mining, or processing operations and uses reasonably incident thereto” (30 U.S.C. 612). It is a shortened version of the statutory standard. It includes those actions or expenditures of labor and resources by a person of ordinary prudence to prospect, explore, define, develop, mine, or beneficiate a valuable mineral deposit, using methods, structures, and equipment appropriate to the geological terrain, mineral deposit, and stage of development and reasonably related activities.

Substantially regular work means work on, or that substantially and directly benefits, a mineral property, including nearby properties under your control. The work must be associated with the search for and development of mineral deposits or the processing of ores. It includes active and continuing exploration, mining, and beneficiation or processing of ores. It may also include assembly or maintenance of equipment, work on physical improvements, and procurement of supplies, incidental to activities meeting the conditions of §§ 3715.2 and 3715.2-1. It may also include off-site trips associated with these activities. The term also includes a seasonal, but recurring, work program.

Unnecessary or undue degradation, as applied to unauthorized uses, means those activities that are not reasonably incident and are not authorized under any other applicable law or regulation. As applied to authorized uses, the term is used as defined in 43 CFR 3802.0-5 and 3809.0-5.

[61 FR 37125, July 16, 1996, as amended at 62 FR 59822, Nov. 5, 1997]