Authors: Butler, H; Bentel, GM


DOI https://doi.org/10.36487/ACG_rep/1152_67_Butler

Cite As:
Butler, H & Bentel, GM 2011, 'Mine relinquishment – processes and learnings', in AB Fourie, M Tibbett & A Beersing (eds), Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Mine Closure, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 3-11, https://doi.org/10.36487/ACG_rep/1152_67_Butler

Download citation as:   ris   bibtex   endnote   text   Zotero


Abstract:
Mine relinquishment in general terms is the completion of the reclamation activities, meeting agreed closure objectives and return of the site to the landowner. Relinquishment planning and completion is a concept that governments and communities speak to as an expectation and that the mining industry aims to achieve. But there are very few standards or guidelines that provide the how to, and only a precious few mine sites have attained all or even partial release. As regulatory requirements for mine reclamation activities and reporting evolve in detail and scope, and bonding becomes the norm, reaching the end point remains elusive for many sites. Instead the current end point for most is care and maintenance. Is relinquishment possible, or practicable, or is it becoming less probable? This paper looks at the issues that affect the likelihood of relinquishment. Case studies are discussed, with learnings that help lead the way, and those that highlight the road blocks. Many mine operators have the best intentions in protecting the environment, and returning reclaimed mine sites to the land owner in a safe and sustainable condition for future post-mining use. It makes good business sense for the future of mining. It is time to move the conversation beyond reclamation planning and forward to the possibility of relinquishing mine sites through a process that ensures sustainability of mining and the confidence of the land owner.

References:
Bocking, K. (2010) Post closure liabilities. Newsletter, Published by the Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, Western Australia, Volume No. 35, December 2010.
Bocking, K.A., Kam, S.N., Welch D.E. and Williams, D.A. (2009) Management of mine sites after closure. Proceedings Fourth International Conference on Mine Closure (Mine Closure 2009), A.B. Fourie and M. Tibbett (eds), 9–11 September 2009, Perth, Australia, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 245–252.
DITR (2006) Australian Government Department of Industry, Tourism and Resources. Mine closure and completion – Leading practice sustainable development program for the mining industry, October 2006, Commonwealth of Australia.
DMP (2009) Government of Western Australia, Department of Mines and Petroleum. Regulator Expectations for Site Relinquishment. Presentation by Eugene Bouwhuis, Senior Environmental Inspector Government of Western Australia, Department of Mines and Petroleum, 20 May 2009.
Donald, B.J. (2010). Polaris Mine – decommissioning and reclamation in Canada’s Arctic. Proceedings Fifth International Conference on Mine Closure (Mine Closure 2010), A.B. Fourie, M. Tibbett and J. Wiertz (eds), 23–26 November 2010, Viña del Mar, Chile, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 647–658.
INAC (2002) Indian and Northern Affairs Canada. Mine Site Reclamation Policy for the Northwest Territories. Published under the authority of Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Canada 2002.
NOAMI (2009) National Orphaned / Abandoned Mines Initiative. 2002–2008 Performance Report. Prepared by National Orphaned /Abandoned Mines Initiative, Secretariat Natural Resources Canada, 2009.
Queensland Government (2004) Guideline - Policy Framework - To Encourage Progressive Rehabilitation of Large Mines. Queensland Government, Environmental Protection Agency, Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service, ABN 87 221 158 786, November 2004.
Robertson, A. and Shaw, S. (2010) DRAFT Infomine E-Book. Mine Closure. Produced by Robertson Geoconsulting. Vancouver.
Saskatchewan Ministry of Energy and Resources (2009) Institutional Control Program. Post Closure Management of Decommissioned Mine/Mill Properties Located on Crown Land in Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan Government, December 2009.
SRK (2008) Final Closure Report Contact Lake Gold Mine Decommissioning and Reclamation. Prepared for Cameco Corporation by SRK Consulting Engineers and Scientists, March 2008.




© Copyright 2021, Australian Centre for Geomechanics (ACG), The University of Western Australia. All rights reserved.
Please direct any queries or error reports to repository-acg@uwa.edu.au