Every effort should be made to bring the ongoing dumping of mine tailings to an end

29th September 2023

By: Martin Creamer

Creamer Media Editor


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The state of the world is such that dumping huge volumes of mine waste on Mother Earth should be a thing of the past. Is there technology available to ensure that mines no longer need to dump problematic material as they have been doing for so long and with so many ill effects, including death and destruction?

It seems that technology is on widespread offer to strip mined material of its valuable metals and minerals, once and for all. Is that technology being taken up? Not in widespread fashion South Africa, it seems. Adding to tailings dams and mine dumps should no longer be automatic without a clear answer being given about the extent to which new technology can assure safe disposal of cleaned-up residual material.

One manganese metal beneficiator is turning that safe residual into bricks for local communities. That is very good to see. Obviously, existing tailings dams and dumps, already up and needing to come down, must continue to be retreated to recover value and help the environment, but those retreaters must be asked why they are not using technology that can put an end to the process.

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Edited by Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor



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