VANCOUVER (miningweekly.com) – The world’s largest copper producer, Chile’s State-run Codelco, has submitted an environmental impact assessment (EIA) to local authorities proposing a $250-million buildout, designed to reduce the impact of glaciers at the large openpit operation.
Located about 80 km north-east of Santiago, in northern Chile, Andina is one of the world’s largest copper mines and has regularly been in the crosshairs of environmentalists opposing the mine.
Codelco has made the proposal to ensure that the operation will continue producing copper at the maximum permitted levels, using the same amounts of water and maintaining the original mine life.
The project, to be completed over 36 months once the EIA has been approved, deals with adjustments to the openpit and its ballast deposit. The revised mine plan will modify the shape of the current pit, redirecting the mining zones away from areas where glaciers are encountered.
It will also improve the capacity of the ballast tank, changing its shape to not interfere with glacier formation.
According to Codelco’s latest public information, Andina produced 164 000 t of red metal from January to September in 2017.