Strachotta, C, Plewes, H, McBrien, M & Rey, L 2009, 'Wetlands treatment of mine drainage from the Tucush Valley waste dump at the high altitude Antamina Mine, Peru', in AB Fourie & M Tibbett (eds), Mine Closure 2009: Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Mine Closure
, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 285-297, https://doi.org/10.36487/ACG_repo/908_21
A new water treatment facility was constructed in 2005/2006 to manage drainage from the expanding
Tucush Valley waste rock dump at Antamina Cu-Zn-Mo mine, located in the rugged high Andes in Peru,
4,200 m above sea level. The treatment system comprised a combination of sediment ponds, serpentine
channels and wetlands. The wetlands cover six ha and are designed to treat up to 115 L/s for removal of
nitrates, ammonia and metals.
The project is the highest operating wetland in the world and provides an important precedent for water
treatment at other operating and abandoned high altitude mines, particularly in the Andes. Monitoring to
date indicates the wetland is functioning as designed with effective removal of nitrate and zinc. Further
monitoring is required to confirm effective treatment of other target parameters. However, all water
parameter concentrations measured at the treatment system discharge point are compliant with established
water quality requirements.
Ministerio de Energía y Minas del Perú (2007) Guía para la evaluación de impactos en la calidad de las aguas
superficiales por actividades minero metalúrgicas, Republica del Perú – Ministerio de Energía y Minas, 4 p.
Ministerio de Energía y Minas del Perú (1996) Aprueba los niveles máximos permisibles para efluentes líquidos para
las actividades minero-metalúrgicas – Resolución Ministerial No 011-96-EM/VMM, Republica del Perú –
Ministerio de Energía y Minas, 5 p.
World Bank (1995) World Bank Environment, Health and Safety Guidelines; Mining and Milling – Open Pit, World
Bank, 1 p.