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Conference Proceedings

Water in Mining 2006

Conference Proceedings

Water in Mining 2006

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Quantification of Mine-Related Effects on Streamflows

The Australian Water Balance Model (AWBM) has found widespread use in Australia in estimating the streamflow behaviour of catchments. It has been used at the Ridgeway Gold Mine, in central west New South Wales, to estimate streamflows in creeks potentially affected by loss of spring-fed baseflow due to mine dewatering. The AWBM estimates are used to assess the effect of mining on streamflows and the need to provide compensatory flow releases, which would be drawn from mine water supplies, into the creeks, in compliance with regulatory consent requirements. The monitored flows in some of the creeks exhibit non-typical behaviour, with streamflows increasing in autumn months despite a lack of significant rainfall. This behaviour is believed to be due to the combined effects of discharge from rock fractures and the effects of evapotranspiration in the riparian zone. A modified version of the AWBM has been developed which much more closely simulates the observed flow behaviour and which will be used in ongoing flow assessments for the mine._x000D_
This paper outlines the difficulties involved in modelling low flows in small catchments that are subject to a number of influences (other than mining), describes the development of a refined model to improve simulation of low flows and baseflow in small headwater catchments and highlights the need for good baseline data to calibrate such models._x000D_
FORMAL CITATION:Marszalek, A, Gilbert, L and Boughton, W, 2006. Quantification of mine-related effects on streamflows, in Proceedings Water in Mining 2006, pp 307-314 (The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy: Melbourne).
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  • Published: 2005
  • PDF Size: 0.742 Mb.
  • Unique ID: P200610040

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