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Environmental News

Initial certification audit at South Deep planned for mid-2008

By: Sylvester Haskins     25th April 2008 Gold mining conglomerate, Gold Fields, has made a policy decision to certify all of its operations according to ISO14001, which is an internationally recognised environmental standard for an environmental management system. 

Randfontein remining EIA to be completed next month

By: Leandi Kolver     25th April 2008 The environmental impact-assessment (EIA) of its proposed re-mining and processing of gold and uranium at the tailings facilities at its Randfontein operations will be completed by the end of May. The project is part of a larger project, comprising the re-mining and processing of 56 historic... 

No delay down under for clean coal

By: Keith Campbell     18th April 2008 Australia emains committed to the development of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) as a means of maintaining the environmental viability of coal as a source of energy, and thus protecting the long-term future of the country’s coal industry.  

Gem Diamonds halts Indonesia mine to investigate govt 'concerns'

By: Liezel Hill     11th April 2008 LSE-listed Gem Diamonds has temporarily suspended mining at its Cempaka diamond mine in Indonesia, the firm said on Friday. 

‘Toxic’ lake gets a green makeover

By: Loni Prinsloo     11th April 2008 South Africa’s fifth-largest gold-miner, Harmony Gold, is spearheading a water treatment plant at its Evander mine’s No 8 shaft, which aims to improve the quality of water and rehabilitate the Robinson Lake. The lake is indicated to have elevated levels of uranium of more than 40 000... 

Managing safety, health, environment central to business success, says Exxaro

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     11th April 2008 Managing safety, health and environment (SHE) is central to the success of business and is an important aspect in establishing suitable mitigation measures that are integral to achieving zero harm, says diversified miner Exxaro in its latest annual report. 

BHP’s aluminium projects go green

By: Leandi Kolver     4th April 2008 Under the wing of global resource group BHP Billiton’s Bayside/Hillside Corporate social investment (CSI) department, two nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) are currently managing its ongoing ‘green’ projects. 

New system analyses environmental, physiological risk factors for mineworkers

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     4th April 2008 Electronic research and development house Netshield South Africa has developed a system that monitors and analyses environmental and physiological risk factors for mineworkers. 

Mercury-free gold extraction process makes African footprint 

By: Jonathan Faurie     28th March 2008 The iGoli mercury-free gold extraction process has made a significant impact in Tanzania and is widening its footprint in Africa, reports mineral-focused company Mintek. 

JSE-listed DRDGold using Ergo to strike strategic balance between consistent surface gold, volatile underground assets 

By: Martin Creamer     28th March 2008 Having a good balance of consistent surface gold operations and high-potential but volatile underground mines is a vital component of the strategy of DRDGold South Africa, says CEO Niel Pretorius. 

Turkish court halts development at Inmet's Cerattepe project

By: Liezel Hill     26th March 2008 An administrative court in Turkey has granted an injuntion against further development work at the Cerattepe copper project, owned by Canada's Inmet Mining, the firm said on Wednesday. The injunction was granted after two nongovernmental organisations applied to the court to cancel the... 

Centralised smelter could improve North West environmental standards

By: Jonathan Faurie     21st March 2008 Efforts to establish a centralised platinum smelter in the North West could improve the province’s environmental standards, reports TWP-ES, the environmental division of resource-focused project specialist TWP Consulting. 

Clampdown on environmental law implementation

By: Jonathan Faurie     21st March 2008 Of late, government is increasingly clamping-down on environmental compliance, reports diversified law firm Bell Dewar and Hall. 

Willingness to reform, but problems still exist

By: Jonathan Faurie     21st March 2008 Although there is a renewed willingness from mining companies operating in South African to take environmental laws into consideration, problems in companies subscribing to these laws still exist, reports environmental joint-venture (JV) company Environmental Rehabilitation and Closure Services... 

Environmental company completes baseline study for uranium project

By: Jonathan Faurie     21st March 2008 Diversified environmental consultants Bohlweki-SSI Environmental (Bohlweki), part of SSI Engineers and Environmental Consultants, a DHV company, has recently completed a baseline study for Western Uranium. 

Mining in wetlands is economic myopia

21st March 2008 International wildlife and environmental conservation agency, WWF, and the Botanical Society of South Africa remain deeply concerned about the likelihood of the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) becoming the mandated authority for approving environmental-impact assessments in the mining... 

Environmental concerns serious to investors

By: Irma Venter     21st March 2008 International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) secretary-general Paul Mitchell says a survey completed in 2007 confirms that the most serious issues its stakeholders believe the mining and metals industry will face in the next three years are environmental concerns, followed by social and... 

Wits course drawing attention to mining and environmental practices

By: Esmarie Iannucci     14th March 2008 The University of the Witwatersrand’s (Wits’) School for Mining is running a dedicated Mining and the Environment course for diversified miner BHP Billiton’s graduate trainees, during August this year. 

Canadian environmentalist Moore trashes carbon capture and storage 

By: Keith Campbell     14th March 2008 Carbon capture and storage (CCS), which coal miners worldwide hope will guarantee a future for coal as an energy source, may not be viable, technically, economically, and in terms of liability.  

Mine rehab facing hurdles, says speaker ahead of conference

By: Esmarie Iannucci     7th March 2008 This year’s Mine Closure and Rehabilitation conference is set to take place between May 27 to 29. The conference will focus on stakeholder involvement, water management, and progressive mine rehabilitation methodologies, to achieve success in mine closure projects. 

Growing concern over contaminated mine water – report

29th February 2008 One legacy of South Africa’s extensive mineral deposits is the infrastructure and wealth of the country. But another more troubling legacy is emerging as an increasingly urgent problem: environmental contamination from over 100 years of mining that could severely pollute the country’s... 

Energy crisis encourages consumer mindset shift

By: Gerrit Bezuidenhout     22nd February 2008 South Africa currently has its best opportunity in which to act decisively to prevent critical resource shortages, which would have an adverse effect on a sustained economic growth, World Wide Foundation of South Africa (WWF-SA) CEO Morné du Plessis said at a media briefing earlier this... 

Baffinland mulls ramp-up to 30mt/y at world's most northerly iron-ore mine

By: Liezel Hill     19th February 2008 Toronto-listed Baffinland Iron Mines plans to complete a scoping study next month into expanding its Mary River iron-ore project to produce an additional 12-million tons a year after the first five years of operation at the mine, the company said on Tuesday. Baffinland expects the project,... 

Isibonelo colliery leads in biodiversity management

By: Dennis Ndaba     15th February 2008 Coal-miner Anglo Coal’s Isibonelo colliery has a comprehensive wetland offset project that has increased its biodiversity management profile. 

Take water management seriously, SRK urges miners

By: Guy Copans     15th February 2008 Earth and water resource specialist SRK Consulting principal consultant Diana Duthe says that mining operations need to view water management seriously, so as to avoid mine water contamination, particularly in light of a recent report by the national nuclear regulator, which says that wastewater... 

Gold mine continues environmental forum participation

By: Chanel de Bruyn     8th February 2008 Major gold producer, Harmony Gold’s Evander mine continues its participation in the Waterval Forum, a water catchment management forum established by the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry (Dwaf). 

Gold mine using only a fraction of power allocation

By: Loni Prinsloo     8th February 2008 Simmer & Jack Mines' (Simmers') Buffelsfontein mine complex has an historic installed Eskom supply capacity of 435 MW, but the mine’s current electricity peak demand, under normal conditions, is about 115 MW. 

Clean Development Mechanism sees carbon emission reductions

By: Desislava Tzoneva     1st February 2008 The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change secretariat says that over 860 clean development mechanism (CDM) projects have been registered globally. The CDM is expected to generate over 2,6-billion credit emission reductions, each equivalent to one t of carbon dioxide (CO2) by 2012,... 

Opportunity for research

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     25th January 2008 Diamond miner De Beers, a key player in the marine diamond industry of the west coast of Southern Africa, recognised that its participation in the Benguela Current Large Marine Ecosystem (BCLME) programme would be important for the outcomes of the programme’s mining-related projects. 

Government battling to comply with its own legislation at derelict mine sites

By: Leandi Kolver     18th January 2008 In Africa, there is a perception that different water-treatment standards are being applied to local mining operations than to internationally linked mining operations. International companies are applying stricter standards, but, because these operational standards cost more, smaller local... 

Cyanide lab aids mining houses in cyanide analysis

By: Gerrit Bezuidenhout     18th January 2008 South Africa’s minerals technology science council Mintek is currently assisting many of the larger mining houses in the country to assess their cyanide code compliance levels by generating analytical data, compiling it over time and evaluating the effects of cyanide management strategies 

Xstrata Copper to double scrap recycling capacity

By: Liezel Hill     16th January 2008 The copper unit of diversified miner Xstrata plans to double its capacity to recycle electronic scrap metal at its Horne smelter, in Quebec, Canada, to 100 000 t/y, the group said on Wednesday. 

Canada-listed miner goes all out to save Mexican cactuses

By: Leandi Kolver     14th December 2007 The cactuses have to be relocated to an area that has been affected by human activity to avoid competition with other individuals. 

Diversified miner reviewing climate change policy

By: Esmarie Iannucci     14th December 2007 The voluntary Carbon Disclosure Project, a global survey in which companies answer a questionnare on greenhouse gas emissions disclosure issues and corporate awareness on management of climate change, found that a number of players dominated South Africa’s carbon emissions. 

RBCT wins energy efficiency award

By: Christy van der Merwe     13th December 2007 The recipient of the 2007 National Business Initiative energy efficiency eta award was the world's single-largest coal terminal, the Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT). 

Govt to do balanced assessment of mining and environmental issues in Xolobeni mine-right review 

By: Christy van der Merwe     11th December 2007 A group of about 50 peaceful protesters from the Xolobeni community, in the Eastern Cape, handed over a petition in support of the proposed heavy minerals mining project in the area, to the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) on Tuesday. 

Minerals science council goes very small to help the environment

By: Keith Campbell     7th December 2007 South Africa’s minerals technology science council Mintek wants to use nanotechnology to combat water pollution. Mintek hosts one of the country’s first two Nanotechnology Innovation Centres, 

Essakane gold project gets environmental green light 

By: Liezel Hill     5th December 2007 Ottawa-based Orezone Resources has received a notice of compliance from the Ministry of Environment and the Quality of Life of Burkina Faso for the environmental impact-assessment of its flagship Essakane gold project, bringing it one step closer towards the start of construction for the mine,... 

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