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Water in Mining 2006

Conference Proceedings

Water in Mining 2006

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Dealing with Water Issues in Abandoned Metalliferous Mine Reclamation in the United Kingdom

This paper attempts to draw together the experience of over 30 years of research and practice in the United Kingdom on the rehabilitation of abandoned metalliferous mining wastes. The reliance on water when the mines were operating has implications for water quality and the techniques used to restore sites to alleviate the principal impacts of the mines. Drivers of reclamation included concerns about human health from wind blown dust and pollution of watercourses as well as perceptions of dereliction. Techniques of reclamation used involved removal of spoil from near to surface watercourses, capping of spoil, diversion of watercourses, use of impermeable membranes, prevention of surface sinks into underground workings and the use of constructed wetlands. The issues to be dealt with in mine reclamation have become more complex and sometimes diverge. The schemes in the 1990s described have been effective in dealing with pollution from spoil heaps and small but significant adit discharges; however, significant issues, particularly those of large flows of polluted water from mine sites, still need to be dealt with. Although the paper describes the legacy of mining, which largely finished in the late 19th/early 20th century, similar issues but on a larger scale are to be found in more recent mining, for example Eastern Europe. In many of these areas minerals still remain to be won and dealing with this legacy may fall on new mining developments._x000D_
FORMAL CITATION:Palmer, J P, 2006._x000D_
Dealing with water issues in abandoned metalliferous mine reclamation in the United Kingdom, in Proceedings Water in Mining 2006, pp 341-350 (The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy: Melbourne).
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  • Published: 2005
  • PDF Size: 3.413 Mb.
  • Unique ID: P200610044

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