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Environmental News

Forsys granted enviro approval for Namibia uranium mine

By: Liezel Hill     4th June 2008 Toronto-based Forsys Metals has received approval and clearance from Namibia's Ministry of Environment and Tourism for both the environmental-impact assessment and environmental management plan for its Valencia uranium project in the country. 

Teck Cominco working with officials after refinery spill, output unaffected

By: Liezel Hill     30th May 2008 US and Canadian government departments and agencies were monitoring potential human and environmental health effects on Friday, after diversified miner Teck Cominco reported that about 950 kg of lead in solution had spilled into the Columbia river, after a technical failure at its Trail lead and... 

Water management strategies implemented at KOSH mines

By: Rozanne Cloete     30th May 2008 South African gold producers AngloGold Ashanti, Simmer & Jack Mines (Simmers) and Pamodzi Gold have implemented a water management strategy in the Klerksdorp, Orkney, Stilfontein and Hartebeesfontein (KOSH) regions, after a dispute arose in 2005. 

Health implications of asbestos-mining are far from over

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     23rd May 2008 Although asbestos mining was banned in South Africa in 2001, and regulations prohibiting the use, manufacture and the import and export of asbestos and asbestos-containing materials was gazetted in March, this fibrous mineral still poses a major threat to communities, especially in areas where... 

Adopting health and safety best practice will ensure realisation of zero-harm aspiration

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     23rd May 2008 While the mining industry in South Africa has committed itself to a zero harm and a value based approach to health and safety, a critical ingredient needed to turn this commitment into action is the implementation of the mining industry occupational safety and health (MOSH) best practise adoption... 

Diversified miner focused on creating a carbon footprint benchmark

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     16th May 2008 JSE-listed, diversified miner, Exxaro, is focused on its vision of becoming a zero-carbon footprint company, which will create a benchmark for other South African companies. 

SA lagging behind in taking advantage of carbon credits system

By: Leandi Kolver     16th May 2008 South frica is far behind in using the benefits it can get from carbon credits,” says mine ventilation and refrigeration specialist Bluhm Burton Engineering group CEO Steven Bluhm. “There is a need for companies to start utilising carbon credits because it is a good business... 

Permitting hurdle delays Spanish mine – Inmet

By: Liezel Hill     14th May 2008 TSX-listed Inmet Mining expects delays in shipping the first ore from its Las Cruces copper project, in Spain, after the country's water authority withdrew a key permit. The company had been notified that its authorisation for a dewatering and reinjection system (DRS) at the project had been... 

Coal ash cleaning up

By: Fatima Gabru     9th May 2008 The rapid industrial expansion in South Africa during the late 1970s and early 1980s, created a surge in the demand for electricity. Given the vast coal reserves South Africa possesses, the additional capacity was provided by the erection of large, from 3 000 MW to 3 600 MW, pulverised coal-fired... 

Research makes inroads in dealing with acid mine drainage

By: Desislava Tzoneva     2nd May 2008 National research and development initiator, the Water Research Commission (WRC), is funding and undertaking a number of projects to provide solutions for dealing with acid mine drainage (AMD) in South Africa. 

Alternative fire lighting reduces pollution, ups energy savings

By: Desislava Tzoneva     2nd May 2008 Coal mining company Anglo Coal won the second annual Nedbank Capital Green Mining socioeconomic award last year for implementing the Department of Mineral’s and Energy (DME)-endorsed alternative fire-lighting method, Basa Njengo Magogo (BNM), in the Vosman township.  

Mine water treatment plant under way

By: Desislava Tzoneva     2nd May 2008 The wastewater treatment demonstration plant to be built at Anglo Coal’s operations in the Emalahlehi municipality using the GypSLiM process, is under way, and product recovery as well as industrial waste recycling company Sulphide Tech process engineer Shaan Oosthuizen says that plant... 

Legislation protecting mine environment standards

By: Desislava Tzoneva     2nd May 2008 Diversified law firm for commerce, environment and finance in mining, Bell Dewar and Hall, environment senior associate Justine Sweet says that two pieces of legislation could boost local environment responsibility in mining operations, with particular reference to mine water treatment. 

Companies join forces to address mining-related water pollution 

By: Guy Copans     2nd May 2008 To arrest the problem of acid mine drainage (AMD) in the Witwatersrand Basin area, a state-of-the-art water -treatment plant capable of processing 75-million litres of AMD to industrial ‘grey-water’ quality, has been established at the Harmony, eight shaft, in Randfontein.  

Anglo cutting energy 15%, carbon 10%, CEO announces

By: Martin Creamer     2nd May 2008 Diversified miner Anglo American, which has operations in 45 countries and employs 100 000 people, aims to cut its energy consumption by 15% and the amount of carbon it produces per unit of output by 10%. 

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,... 

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