Tommi Kauppila, Geological Survey of Finland, PO Box 1237, 70211 Kuopio, Finland; tommi.kauppila(at)gtk.fi
This section reviews the general objectives of mine closure. These are mainly based on internationally accepted definitions and objectives. In addition, more detailed objectives are provided for the major themes of mine closure such as water management, waste management, water treatment, and monitoring. The later relate to performance criteria for individual mine closure unit operations and technical solutions.
General objectives of mine closure
A commonly cited general objective of mine closure is that it should ensure the long-term physical, chemical, and biological stability of the site to minimize potential environmental and health risks. This should preferably be achieved in a manner that requires as little long-term active involvment (maintenance and monitoring) as possible.
A hierarchy of post-mining land uses
Post mining land uses are usually discussed early in the project to guide the definition of closure objectives. The aim is to identify and to regularly refine post mining land uses in a consultation process with the key stakeholders. However, there may be legislative requirements that affect the post mining land uses that are available for consideration. For instance, the Guidelines for Preparing Mine Closure Plans for Western Australia (Government of Western Australia, Department of Mines and Petroleum & Environmental Protection Agency 2011) defines a hierarchy of post-mining land uses:
- Reinstate “natural” ecosystems as similar as possible to the original ecosystem
- Develop an alternative land use with higher beneficial uses than the pre-mining land use
- Reinstate the pre-mining land use
- Develop an alternative land use with other beneficial uses than the pre-mining land use
Detailed objectives for mine closure
The following Closedure pages describe more detailed objectives for mine closure for different mining activities:
In addition, objectives for mine closure are also discussed in the following pages:
Government of Western Australia, Department of Mines and Petroleum & Environmental Protection Agency 2011. Guidelines for Preparing Mine Closure Plans. 78 p. http://www.dmp.wa.gov.au/documents/Mine_Closure%282%29.pdf