A miners' wheel was unveiled in Kirkconnel as part of this year's 'Day of the Region' celebrations. The monument, on Polveoch Terrace, just off the main street, was opened by councillors, children and local people.
"Our environment and our economy have been scarred by the Scottish Government's failures on open-cast mining. We need assurances that lessons have been learnt.
"But more importantly, we need confidence that these failings will not be repeated. The unrestored mines have left local communities environmentally bankrupt.
"Taxpayers may also face the unacceptable burden of meeting the multimillion-pound hole in restoration costs.''
– Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats
"The Scottish Government will shortly hold a consultation on more effective regulation.
"More effective regulation is the principal way of improving confidence in the sector and it will keep onside the insurers and banks that underwrite risks on opencast mining.
"Asking the right questions about policy and practice, about site surveys and restoration guarantees will pave a way forward so that future sites are run to the best of standards and progressively and appropriately restored."
Nenthead used to have a mine, but it was closed and turned into a museum.
The new plans have attracted some criticism because of the impact on the local environment, but the company behind the plans have been quick to point out that current mines are significantly cleaner than mines used to be.
They have also warned that the vast majority of exploration works do not lead on to mines being opened, but have said they won't know for certain until more boreholes are drilled.
$1million is being spent on drilling exploratory boreholes, which could lead to the creation of a new lead and zinc mine in the North Penines.
If the project goes ahead, up to 500 jobs could be created at the mine just outside the village of Nenthead, near Alston, just a few miles from the border between Cumbria, County Durham and Northumbria.
One 350 metre borehole has already been drilled by the mineral exploration company Minco Plc.
Two further boreholes are planned, which could rise to eight, depending on what the initial ones reveal.