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Environmental News

NGOs seek to have Mpumalanga prospecting licences overturned

By: Christy van der Merwe     26th June 2009 A group of nongovernmental organisations (NGO’s) and landowners in the Wakkerstroom and Luneburg area of Mpumalanga have filed two High Court applications to have the coal prospecting rights, which the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) awarded to Delta Mining Company, refuted. 

SRK sets up shop in Argentina

By: Jonathan Faurie     26th June 2009 The Argentinean mining industry, although small compared with South Africa, Australia and Chile, has huge potential. 

SA consulting group opens offices in China, Indonesia

By: Jonathan Faurie     26th June 2009 With the rapid expansion shown in many Asian markets, consulting engineering company SRK Consulting has recently opened a number of new offices in the region to cope with its growing demand. 

Acid mine drainage – a new value-added beneficiation economy?

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     26th June 2009 The issue of mine water should not be considered a mining challenge, but rather as a resource that can be used as the basis of a new value-added beneficiation economy, says political scientist Dr Anthony Turton. 

Cyanide neutralisation firm sets up shop in South Africa

By: Loni Prinsloo     19th June 2009 Within the next two months, the US-based wastewater treatment company, Pollution to Water (P2W), will set up office in South Africa offering the country’s gold mines a cyanide destruction system that eliminates the use of chemicals. 

Growth opportunities galore 
despite downturn – SRK

By: Jonathan Faurie     19th June 2009 Although South African companies are facing an uncertain future in the current economic climate, local consulting engineering company SRK Consulting comments that there are a lot of oppertunaties for growth in the market.


Remote monitoring of water saves time, money

19th June 2009 Where water is used on industrial sites and at the surface on mines there is a need to monitor the water at its source and once it has moved through the plant process. Sources that can be monitored include dams, rivers and boreholes and at-source monitoring generally covers flow rates and the... 

Tshipi feasibility study confirms ‘large, long-life’ SA manganese project

By: Creamer Media Reporter      18th June 2009 JSE-listed Pallinghurst Resources said on Thursday that the a feasibility study had indicated that an open-pit mine producing two-million ton a year could be established at the Tshipi Kalahari manganese project, South Africa. Pallinghurst, together with its co-investors, hold 49,9% of Tshipi.  

Tyre recycling and microencapsulation at Sishen mine

By: Lindsey Berry     12th June 2009 Two waste management projects under way at Kumba Iron Ore’s (KIO’s) Sishen mine, in the Northern Cape, are a tyre-recycling project and a microencapsulation process to treat contaminated soil. 

Global mining company pilots water-management scheme

By: Philippa Levenberg     5th June 2009 Diversified mining group Xstrata South Africa (XCSA) has developed an integrated groundwater resource management plan (IGRMP) that will ensure sustainability and environmental compliance in ground water management at its South African mining operations.  

Australian mining major commits to Lumwana town development

By: Jonathan Faurie     29th May 2009 Australian mining major, Equinox Minerals has secured a $25-million debt facility with the Netherlands Government development funding institution, the Nederlandse Financierings-Maatshappij voor Ontwikklingslanden, to advance the company’s social development plan. 

Australia’s emissions scheme to cut 23 510 mining jobs by 2020 – council

By: Esmarie Iannucci     22nd May 2009 The Australian minerals industry could potentially lose 23 510 direct jobs by 2010 and 66 480 by 2030, owing the introduction of the carbon pollution reduction scheme (CPRS), the Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) warned on Friday. The council said that the “adverse” employment impact of the... 

Mining giant develops better water consumption understanding

By: Jacqueline Holman     22nd May 2009 Mining giant Anglo American’s (Anglo’s) business units will develop a better understanding of its water consumption in 2009 by using the Anglo Water Footprint model, which was implemented across all the mine’s business units during 2008. 

Coal of Africa submits environmental study for Vele colliery  

By: Christy van der Merwe     20th May 2009 JSE- Aim- and ASX-listed Coal of Africa Limited (CoAL) has submitted the environmental impact assessment (EIA) and environmental management plan (EMP) as part of the new order mining license for the Vele colliery project in South Africa’s Limpopo province. Located near Musina, the project has... 

Mine’s social committee provides local community with running water

By: Kelly Farthing     15th May 2009 One of the largest ferrochrome producers in the world, Samancor Chrome, is involved in various community upliftment projects. One such initiative is the Hlalanikahle water reticulation project headed up by the Samcor Ferrometals corporate social investment (CSI) committee. 

Local community sustains environmental rehabilitation scheme

By: Philippa Levenberg     8th May 2009 Predominantly black women-owned business Monontsha reports that it has, to date, rehabilitated more than 34,4 ha of land at platinum-miner Impala Platinum’s (Implats’) Rustenburg mine. Monontsha is responsible for Implats’ environmental rehabilitation initiative, the Woodchips project,... 

Acid mine drainage single most significant threat to South Africa’s environment

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     8th May 2009 Environmentalists have termed acid mine drainage (AMD) as the single most significant threat to South Africa’s environment. In the past, these and other concerns about AMD were in effect ignored by the major stakeholders of the country’s mining industry, including government and mining houses. 

DME to nail down titanium project rights issue by early June

By: Christy van der Merwe     8th May 2009 South Africa’s Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) spokesperson Bheki Khumalo tells Mining Weekly that the issue of the mining right for the Xolobeni titanium bearing minerals mine on the Wild Coast, will be finalised by the end of May or early June this year. 

Challenges of water management on SA mines

By: Jacqueline Holman     1st May 2009 Business disruption risk is growing owing to uncertain future water allocations, environmental management consultancy Environmental Resources Management mining director Marinda van der Merwe said at the consultancy's seminar, Prioritising Water Management. 

Mining companies to benefit from expanding environmental footprint

By: Jacqueline Holman     1st May 2009 Mining companies can reduce closure costs and claim market share by expanding their global environmental footprint, environmental management consultancy Environmental Resources Management (ERM) mining director Marinda van der Merwe said at ERM's seminar, Prioritising Water Management. 

Gold miner receives automated dewatering pump control system

By: Jacqueline Holman     1st May 2009 Energy services company HVAC International appointed engineering company Iritron to complete the installation of an automated dewatering pump control system for Shaft 7 on gold-miner Goldfields' Kloof mine, in Glen Harvie. 

Water reclamation plant reaches 99% recovery

By: Jacqueline Holman     1st May 2009 Consulting and contracting company Keyplan has achieved 99% treated water recovery at the eMalahleni water reclamation plant, which it designed, built and currently operates on behalf of diverse mining company Anglo American's coal subsidiary Anglo Coal and BHP Billiton. 

Environmental management system standardised across operations

By: Darren Parker     1st May 2009 Platinum producer Anglo Platinum (Angloplat) engaged in March, 2009, the implementation of a standardised environmental management system standard that has been similarly applied across all holding company Anglo American's (Anglo's) business units and divisions, called the Anglo Environment Way... 

Now R5m from government for Pamodzi Gold water problem missing  

By: Martin Creamer     29th April 2009 A sum of R5-million said by government to have been paid over to Pamodzi Gold to solve its rising water problem is missing. Pamodzi Gold East Rand GM Graham Chamberlain told Mining Weekly Online on Wednesday that the money had still not been received but government spokespersons say that it has... 

Pamodzi Gold’s Grootvlei water problem now desperate – East Rand GM

By: Martin Creamer     24th April 2009 The mine water problem at Pamodzi Gold’s Grootvlei mine had reached desperate proportions, Pamodzi Gold GM East Rand Operations Graham Chamberlain told Mining Weekly Online at the weekend. Chamberlain, whose team has been fighting a rising mine water battle on a shoestring for months, told... 

Quelling the fire

By: Carla Thomaz     24th April 2009 When Grootegeluk coal mine, situated in the Limpopo province, began operating in 1980, all of the mine’s plant discards and inter-burden materials were stacked on discards dumps. The plant discards and inter-burden material with their high carbon content began to spontaneously combust. The safe... 

Indonesian ruling opens way for exploration on previously quarantined project area

By: Esmarie Iannucci     20th April 2009 ASX-listed minerals explorer Oropa Limited reported on Monday that an Indonesian High Court ruling had opened the way for the company to pursue work on the sensitive western portion Pungkut project in Sumatra. The decision went against a Forestry Minitries decree on a national park, which... 

Mapungubwe emerges as new theatre in tussle between mining and ecotourism 

By: Christy van der Merwe     17th April 2009 The consistently contentious question of whether or not mining, ecotourism and agriculture can co-exist, was once again highlighted during the public consultation process for Coal of Africa Limited’s (CoAL’s) Vele Colliery, near the Mapungubwe World Heritage landscape in Limpopo. The... 

New chemical manufacturing plant for the drilling environment

By: Beth Shirley     17th April 2009 Manufacturer of biodegradable drilling fluids and chemicals Samchem has constructed a plant to manufacture the partially hydrolysed polyacrylamide (PHPA) copolymer emulsion used to stabilise reactive clay and shale formations in the drilling environment. The product is also used as an injection... 

Environmental drilling 
services assist in acid mine drainage

By: Beth Shirley     17th April 2009 Drilling specialist company Environmental Drilling & Remediation Services (EDRS) manager Derek Whitfield says that the company is currently one of the few in Southern Africa offering services in environmental drilling and contamination remediation for the mining sector, particularly for acid... 

DME grants prospecting rights to White Rivers Explorations

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     17th April 2009 The Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) has, in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, granted the application for prospecting rights around the Vredefort Dome, a world heritage site, to White Rivers Explorations (WRE).  

Entries sought for green mining awards

By: Christy van der Merwe     15th April 2009 The fourth yearly Nedbank Capital Green Mining awards would be held in October 2009, and organisers were seeking entries from sustainable mining projects across Africa. The purpose of the awards was to highlight those African mining and mineral beneficiation operators that were making... 

EIA report to determine the fate of tailings dam expansion

By: Beth Shirley     10th April 2009 A proposed expansion of the Dilokong mine's tailings dam, as part of increasing production for chrome producer ASA Metals, is undergoing rigorous environmental-impact assessment (EIA) before operations can proceed. The mine is located in Limpopo province. 

AngloGold Ashanti slashes fatalities by 57%, aiming to eliminate deaths

By: Loni Prinsloo     10th April 2009 Speaking at AngloGold Ashanti's six launch of its 2008 Report to Society the company's CEO Mark Cutifani reported that the company has experienced a 57% reduction in fatalities and a significant improvement in health performance.  

Positive results for mine tailings rehabilitation experiment

By: Loni Prinsloo     3rd April 2009 The first year of a novel mine tailings rehabilitation experiment is complete with positive results to show, states the Canadian-based Mining Innovation Rehabilitation and Applied Research Corporation (Mirarco). 

Legislation threatens ecological responsibility in mining

By: Lindsey Berry     27th March 2009 The National Environmental Management Amendment Act (NEMA) 2008, read with the draft regulations published in February, has reduced the minimum requirements for environmental responsibility in mining. Alterations to Section 24 of NEMA have created ambiguity about the need for an... 

US enviro agency has 'serious concerns' about mountain top mining

By: Liezel Hill     24th March 2009 The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has “serious concerns" about potential harmful effects on water quality caused by mountain top mining, the agency said on Tuesday. The EPA has informed the US Army Corps of Engineers that it is specifically concerned about two new coal-mining... 

Operation sets benchmark for mine water treatment

By: Carla Thomaz     20th March 2009 The eMalahleni Water Reclamation Plant, which tackles the environmental challenges associated with water discharge from operating and closed mines, has set a benchmark for treating mine water, with a similar project being investigated in South America. 

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