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I am told that yesterday’s posting was hard to read.  So rather than write tonight, let me simply post some pictures I took from a public road of tailings facilities closed by the Peruvian regulators.  Not sure how long the gabion baskets will last.

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Mining in Peru

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Words cannot capture a day of intense impressions.  Yet let me try. Go east of Lima into the hills (as I did today) and see this:

  • Tailings clinging to the steep hills in defiance of gravity.
  • A mine closed by the government to perfection.  They know what they are doing!
  • Filter-pressed tailings transported fifty kilometers up 1000 m elevation to a new disposal site — economically?

Continue Reading »

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The great news is that all is going well regarding the upcoming conference Geosynthetics Mining Solutions.  The conference is to be held in Vancouver September 8 to 11, 2014.

We have sold out the sponsorships–so almost everybody that is anybody in the world of geosynthetics manufacturers, suppliers, and installers will be there.  I am very grateful to them all.  But most impressive is that many have teamed with consultants to write paper about the application of their products in mining case histories.

We have published the first list of papers.  May change as more come in or, sadly, one or two drop out.  But I think it is fair to say that we have an extraordinary set of papers, most of which include case histories new to me.  In fact I am amazed and impressed at the variety of new applications to which geosynthetics are being put in the mining industry.  Here are three that catch my attention:

  • Rigid Inclusions for Embankment Support over Waste Phosphatic Clay by Ed Garbin, James D. Hussin, Jeffrey R. Hill
  • GCLs in heap leach pads: state of the art and practice by T. Meyer and C. Athanassopoulos
  • Use of an innovative geocomposite (paradrain) to build a reinforced 2H:1V slope using clay and silty soils for stormwater management pond by Ravin Nag, Jasmina Nikodinoska

In addition to a superb collection of papers with practical bent, we have the support of leading practitioners who will present keynote speeches on the work they are doing in geosynthetics in mining.  You may have seen some of the adverts in recent magazines that list most of them.  Due to an oversight on my part (I get old)  we did not list Mark Smith.  But here I wish to make amends.  I have never met Mark, but I have read just about everything he has written and published on geosynthetics, and I know he knows his stuff better than the rest of us.  I look forward to meeting him and hearing him talk.

On the Monday preceding the conference we have three short courses. Here the details

Course 1 – Geosynthetic Design Considerations for Heap Leach Pads – “Extreme Fill Loads on Geomembrane Liner Systems”

Presenters:

Timothy D. Stark, Ph.D., P.E., D.GE, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA

Robert H. Swan, Jr., Drexel University, USA

Allan Breitenbach, Ausenco, USA

R. Kerry Rowe, Queens University, Canada

View the course outline

———-

Course 2 – Introduction to Geosynthetics in Mining

Presenters:

Dirk van Zyl, Professor and Chair of Mining and the Environment, University of British Columbia, Canada

Sam Allen, Vice President, TRI Geosynthetics Services, USA

Terry Mandziak, P.E., Principal Consultant, Geotechnical Engineering, SRK Consulting (U.S.), Inc., USA

View the course outline

———-

Course 3 – Horizontal Drainage, QA and QC: Cost Effective Strategies to Ensure Safe, Leak-Proof and Efficient Geosynthetic Lining Systems

Presenters:

Eric Blond, eng.M.Sc.A., Vice-president, SAGEOS/CTT Group, Canada

Arnaud Budka, ing., Project Director, Groupe Alphard, Canada

Pascal Saunier, P.Eng., Ing., Technical Director, Afitex-Texel Inc., Canada

View the course outline

This is the first conference specifically on the topic of geosynthetics in mining.  And it promises to be great.  Come join us and register now.

 

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The exterior surface of most tailings, waste rock, and heap leach facilities include:

  • A top deck which is the flatter surface that forms the top surface of the facility. This is usually sloped at between one and five percent, primarily to promote runoff.
  • The sideslopes which are easily covered if they are inclined at about five horizontal to one vertical (5H:1V) but which in practice may be as steep as 1.4H:1V.

Covers on the top deck are less subject to erosion, slope instability, and soil creep than covers on sideslopes. Thus different covers may be appropriate at the same facility on the top deck as compared to the sideslopes.  Here are a few idle thoughts on sideslope covers for mine waste facilities. Continue Reading »

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Almost everybody in mining that I talk to has an adverse opinion about the recent Canada Supreme Court ruling that the Crown has a duty to obtain First Nations or Aboriginal consent before mining on claimed land.   Opinions include: Continue Reading »

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Here is a copy of an email alert that I received today.  All about a new book on gender in mining.  I quote below from the email and from the Amazon.com site where you can buy the book. Continue Reading »

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Subaqueous disposal means placement of tailings into or beneath a water cover. Deposition of tailings into a lake is the most common subaqueous method. In many instances the embankment dam is constructed as a water retaining structure and the impoundment is filled with water into which the tailings are discharged. Continue Reading »

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