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Archive for the ‘environmental’ Category

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The oft-asked question I get is this: how do you prevent a recurrence of the Mt Polley failure?  I have touched on some aspects of the answer in previous postings.  But let me, here, state my opinion succinctly.  Sure to be controversial, but this is what I truly believe is necessary to prevent a recurrence of Mt Polley, at least here in BC.   At least the following should be done for every tailings facility (in BC?): (more…)

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I have lost count of the number of radio stations, newspapers, and magazines that have contacted me asking for opinions on the Mt Polley tailings happenings.  Somehow the email from Adrian Lee of that most reputable of Canadian magazine, McLeans, had a air of intelligence the pulled me into replying.  (I confess to being a regular reader of McLeans.) (more…)

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Here are the stories of the seven dam failures that have occurred since the beginning of 2012. Six are failures of tailings facilities. The seventh is a rockfill dam. The following are extracts from technical papers that I wrote well before the Mt Polley failure. Details of the first three are available at this link. Details of the remaining four are in a paper that I will present at the Tailings and Mine Waste 2014 conference in Colorado in October of this year. (more…)

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Today we have read all we can find on the failure of the Mt Polley tailings facility.  It is all distressing.  And mostly misleading.  Here are a few clear thoughts on the topic. (more…)

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Today we completed a successful three-day EduMine webcast on mine closure.  Folk from Germany, Finland, Mauritania, South Africa, Australia, Guatemala, the USA, and Canada “attended.”  We are flattered and thankful to them and applaud their interest in a critical topic and facet of mining.  If you missed the webcast, contact EduMine and ask them to repeat it. (more…)

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These past two days I have had to deal with that knotty subject, computer modeling for mines. I proposed a series of 2D runs in order to get a feel for how groundwater flows into an open pit and from the tailings facility. The younger generation cried in horror at my simplicity.  “We need 3D models to truly replicate the situations,” they protested. I protested: “We are not modeling things on the computer in order to replicate reality and create an electronic simulacrum of what is in nature.” (more…)

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Next week in Brazil is the first InfoMine conference on Mine Closure.  About ninety folk will gather to discuss mine closure in Brazil and South America.  I have read the papers: not a lot of fascination to the rest of us.  Mostly about the theory and postulated future of mine closure laws & regulations in countries that currently have none. The middle of May, I present an EduMine webcast on Mine Closure.  In the  webcast I will review the best few papers from the Brazil conference.  I will also present current case histories of mine closure that I am working on.  And I will go through the theory and practice and issues of mine closure in general.  Come join me. (more…)

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