Germany Valley Karst Survey, Surveying Caves, Karst and Karst Features of Germany Valley, West Virginia

                                                        Germany Valley conservation Task Force
3008 Spencerville Road
Burtonsville, Maryland 20866
21 October 2000

Division of Environmental Protection

105 Railroad Street

Suite 301

Philippi, West Virginia 26414

RE: Article 4 Permit No. 0-2036-86

The Germany Valley Conservation Task Force of the National Speleological Society is opposed to the renewal of the above quarry permit for the following reason.

Continued quarrying may impact negatively on Hellhole a significant karst feature located within the planned quarrying area. Hellhole, a cave with more than 8 miles of surveyed passages, is a significant habitat to two species of federally endangered species of bats. The unique environmental conditions required by the bats would be severely impacted by a breach into the cave system. The management of this cave can only be accomplished by the completion of the underground survey. Continuation of quarry operations, without the knowledge of the location of all cave passages, would present a clear and potential danger to the preservation of the cave’s unique environment. Completion and the verification of the survey must be completed prior to the renewal of this quarry permit.

/s/

M. Barry Chute

Chairman, Germany Valley conservation Task Force