Journalists (and bloggers) have discovered that spills are big news. There is always the element of failure, of human ineptitude, environmental impact, and an aggrieved local ready to state that all future headaches will be attributed to the spill.
The most recent i a spill of radioactive fluids at the Ranger Mine in Australia. Here is part of the report:
A leach tank with 1,450 cubic metre capacity failed at Ranger Mine spilling mud, water, ore and acid. Workers discovered the breech at 1 a.m. Saturday, a hole in the side of Leach Tank 1. A crane attempted to block the hole but was toppled when the tank gave way. No personnel were injured. Energy Resources Australia (ASX:ERA), Ranger Mine’s operators, said the spill was contained. “Containment systems stopped the flow, and this has meant there is no impact to the surrounding environment,” said ERA General Manager Operations Tim Eckersley.
And that should be that: There probably were secondary containment systems around the tank and nothing went anywhere.
But the mine is in a park. And what journalist could resist the remark about the obvious?:
The company said that it is “. . . confident that the nearby Kakadu National Park will not be impacted as a result of this incident.” The park, which surrounds Ranger Mine, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Credibility rests on a measured response to a rationally evaluated incident. But, as I have remarked, there is always a local who can exaggerate beyond credibility. In this case we have this over-the-top statement:
Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation called the accident a “catastrophic failure.”
This is not a catastrophe by any measure. But what a incendiary statement! There was probably a war dance to celebrate the chance to say something.
Posted in About the news, First Nations, health and safety, Uranium | Tagged Kakadu National Park, radiactive, ranger mine, spill | 2 Comments »
Growing up in South Africa, the only thing I knew about mining engineers was that they were the mine manager and lived in a big house in a large, secluded property far from the working masses.
My father regarded the mine manager and all mining engineers as being next to God. You did not speak to them; they spoke to you.
Of course there was always the inconvenient fact that the mine manager and mining engineers lived in terror of the consulting engineers come from the head office in Johannesburg. They carried the wand of life and death with them. The fear was that you might be promoted and have to leave that large house and go to live in Johannesburg where things were expensive and savage, and where there was so much traffic.
None of these realities is captured in a pretty series of graphics at the Mine Staffing International website. They make the mining engineer sound like the health and safety office or the CAD operator. They do provide nice plots showing that your salary will continually increase. No mention of living in large houses or moving to savage climes. Here is their snapshot of a mining engineer. I suppose this “inside” perspective is intended to encourage you to engage MSI to get you a job. It may work for you, so consider them
Posted in health and safety, Jobs and Salaries, Mining history | Tagged jobs, mine staff international, mine staffing international, mining engineer | 2 Comments »
On Tuesday I was in yet another of those asinine arguments about what constitutes “perpetual” in mining and mine closure. I had heard all the arguments, smart and cynical, more than thirty years ago when we debated them on the UMTRA Project. But the pusillanimous arguments continue, for everyone has an opinion and wants to be heard. Continue Reading »
Posted in acid mine drainage, blogs, brandy, Church, consulting, Enviromental, environmental, Law (Mining), mining, Mining history, People, Reclamation | Tagged bomvu ridge, chokia mounds, cover systems and mine closure, giant mine faro mine, mark logsdon, mine closure, Oil sands, perpetual, responsible mining, seminar on cold regions, sustanable mining, UMTRA. UMTRCA | 3 Comments »
Skipped work a little early today and went and bought the Bose Home Theater system: five small speakers, a small subwoofer, and an elegant receiver. Not cheap, but so good-looking, easy to install, and the sound! Continue Reading »
Posted in brandy, opera, People | Tagged attila, bose, hun, opera, Verdi | Leave a Comment »
We went this weekend to the Sunshine Coast north of Vancouver. A ferry ride and many small roads winding along picturesque scenery. No sunshine but these photos.
Posted in British Columbia | Tagged ferry, sunshine coast, Vancouver | 1 Comment »