Authors: Waggitt, PW

Open access courtesy of:


Cite As:
Waggitt, PW 2019, 'Uranium mining: post-closure land uses – a personal global review', in AB Fourie & M Tibbett (eds), Mine Closure 2019: Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Mine Closure, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 997-1002,

Download citation as:   ris   bibtex   endnote   text   Zotero

The mining industry has a long and chequered reputation when it comes to remediation, closure and post-mining land use. There are, sadly, too many poor examples around the world of abandoned mines and remediation projects that have failed to live up to expectations. Modern society has great expectations and high standards that they expect to see enforced when new mining projects are being assessed for development. It is therefore important for the global mining industry to be able to demonstrate that there are examples of useful post-closure uses for former mining sites. In the case of uranium mining, which carries the additional ‘stigma’ of radioactivity it is even more important to show that mining, even uranium mining, need not be a one-time user of land. This paper describes a selection of former uranium mining sites from around the world where remediation has been completed, or is ongoing, and post-mining land use has been established or is nearing completion. The examples are drawn from Europe, the United States of America and Australia.

Keywords: remediation, post-closure land use, uranium mining, balanced mining

Agricola, G 1556, De Re Metallica [Subject Metals], Dover Publications, Inc., New York.
Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy 2014, AusIMM Bulletin, April 2014.
Paul, M & Jahn, S 2015, ‘The Ronneburg waste rock relocation project – Preliminary results of the performance monitoring period’, Proceedings of WISSYM 2015, Wismut GmbH, Chemnitz, pp. 283–285.
United States Department of Energy 2011, Document LMS/DUD/S06350DOE/EA-1770, Washington DC.
United States Department of Energy 2018, Grand Junction, Colorado, Disposal and Processing Sites, fact sheet, viewed 7 May 2019
United States Environmental Protection Agency 2009, Success Stories – Siting Renewable Energy on Contaminated Land. New Rifle Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) Title 1 Site, Colorado.
Waggitt, PW 2000, ‘Nabarlek uranium mine: From EIS to decommissioning’, Proceedings of the International Symposium on the Process Metallurgy of Uranium, Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum, Montreal.
Waggitt, P 2011a, ‘Is there life after uranium mining? A global review’, Proceedings of WISSYM 2011, Wismut GmbH, Chemnitz.
Waggitt, P 2011b, ‘Modern uranium mining, the balanced approach’, The AusIMM International Uranium Conference 2011 Abstracts, Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, Melbourne (CD).
Waggitt, P 2011c, ‘Sustainability: the balanced approach to Modern Uranium Mining’, in B Merkel & M Schipek (eds), The New Uranium Boom. Challenge and Lessons Learned, Springer Heidelberg, Dordrecht.
Wikipedia contributors 2019, Bad Schlema, Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, viewed 7 May 2019,
World Nuclear News 2014, ‘Rožná uranium mine closing in 2017’, World Nuclear News, viewed 7 May 2019,
World Nuclear Association 2017, In Situ Leach Mining of Uranium, viewed 7 May 2019, situ-leach-mining-of-uranium.aspx

© Copyright 2024, 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