Authors: Alekseenko, AV

Open access courtesy of:


Cite As:
Alekseenko, AV 2019, 'Environmental assessment and reclamation of abandoned marl mining dumps in the Northwest Caucasus', in AB Fourie & M Tibbett (eds), Mine Closure 2019: Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Mine Closure, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 1281-1288,

Download citation as:   ris   bibtex   endnote   text   Zotero

This paper discusses the assessment of the environmental impact of marl mining dumps within the industrial agglomeration of Novorossiysk city (Northwest Caucasus, Russia). It presents methods for the ecological and geochemical assessment of terrestrial and aquatic landscapes of the urban landscape and briefly describes field investigations, laboratory tests and statistical data processing used in the assessment. A technique for improving the ecological hazard estimation reliability for mine dumps was developed. It includes identification of poly-element geochemical anomalies and calculation of integral indicators for soil pollution and legacy contamination in the city, as well as the eco-risk of the probability of debris-flow occurrence at the dumps. The paper proposes a method for reducing the ecological hazard of the dumps in the agglomeration. The method is based on the analysis of modern approaches to landscape revitalisation and compares possible ways to stabilise the soil cover of the dumps. The proposed technical reclamation uses a geosynthetic cover and biological reclamation through hydro-seeding of a mixture containing soil amendments, understory and grass and selected woody plant species to reduce erosion. The results were accepted for implementation by the research-production and supervisory organisations of the city of Novorossiysk, and confirmed by three certificates. The technical proposals for abatement of the technogenic hazards and their impacts on the environment, developed in the course of research, can be used to improve the ecological situation within the urban areas of Novorossiysk. The proposed solutions for environmental protection may be used by mining enterprises that also generate waste dumps requiring reclamation to limit deflation and erosion and prevent pollution and debris flows.

Keywords: environmental geochemistry, soil pollution, trace metals, arid climate

Bangian, AH, Ataei, M, Sayadi, A & Gholinejad, A 2012, ‘Optimizing post-mining land-use for pit area in open-pit mining using fuzzy decision making method’, International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology, vol. 9., pp. 613–628.
Caravaca, F, Alguacil, MM, Figueroa, D, Barea, JM & Roldan, A 2003, ‘Re-establishment of Retama Sphaerocarpa as a target species of reclamation of soil physical and biological properties in a semi-arid Mediterranean land’, Forest Ecology and Management, vol. 182, no. 1, pp. 49–58.
Coates, W 2005, ‘Tree species selection for a mine tailings bioremediation project in Peru’, Biomass Bioenergy, vol. 28, no. 4,
pp. 418–423.
Cooke, JA & Johnson, MS 2002, ‘Ecological restoration of land with particular reference to the mining of metals and industrial minerals: a review of theory and practice’, Environmental Reviews, vol. 10, pp. 41–71.
Doley, D, Audet, PP & Mulligan, DR 2012, ‘Examining the Australian context for post-mined land rehabilitation: reconciling a paradigm for the development of natural and novel ecosystems among post-disturbance landscape’, Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, vol. 163, pp. 85–93.
Drebenstedt, C & Alekseenko AV 2019, ‘Environmental impact of abandoned mine wastes on an urban area in NW Caucasus’, Proceedings of the 11th Russian-German Raw Materials Conference, CRC Press, Leiden, pp. 223–229.
Heras, MML 2009, ‘Development of soil physical structure and biological functionality in mining spoils affected by soil erosion in a Mediterranean-Continental environment’, Geoderma, vol. 149, pp. 249–256.
Jordán, MM, Bech, J, García-Sánchez, E & García-Orenes, F 2016, ‘Bulk density and aggregate stability assays in percolation columns’, Journal of Mining Institute, vol. 222, pp. 877–881.
Maczkowiack, RI, Smith, CS, Slaughter, GJ, Mulligan, DR & Cameron, DC 2012, ‘Grazing as a postmining land-use: a conceptual model of the risk factors’, Agricultural Systems, vol. 109, pp. 76–89.
Mborah, C, Bansah, KJ & Boateng, MK 2016, ‘Evaluating alternate post-mining land-uses: a review’, Environment and Pollution, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 14–22.
Narrei, S & Osanloo, M 2011, ‘Post-mining land-use methods optimum ranking, using multi attribute decision techniques with regard to sustainable resources management’, OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development, vol. 2, no. 11, pp. 66–76.
Sourkova, M, Frouz, J, Fettweis, U, Bens, O, Hutl, RF & Santruckova, H 2005, ‘Soil development and properties of microbial biomass succession in reclaimed post mining sites near Sokolov (Czech Republic) and near Cottbus (Germany)’, Geoderma, vol. 129, pp. 73–80.
Zhao, Z, Shahrour, I, Bai, Z, Fan, W, Feng, L & Li, H 2013, ‘Soils development in opencast coal mine spoils reclaimed for 1-13 years in the West-Northern Loess Plateau of China’, European Journal of Soil Biology, vol. 55, pp. 40–46.

© Copyright 2023, Australian Centre for Geomechanics (ACG), The University of Western Australia. All rights reserved.
View copyright/legal information
Please direct any queries or error reports to