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Learn more about the RE3 Conference. Applied Technologies and Methodologies for the Treatment of Heavy Metals and Organics.
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EnviroBlend is a family of treatment chemicals custom blended to render metal bearing wastes non hazardous.
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Remedial Applications: Mine Tailings

Overview

Mining can be an extremely destructive practice that often has very negative impacts on the surrounding environment. The material that is mined for is surrounded by other ore and rock, and the mining process creates large amounts of tailings (the waste material from the ore processing phase that often contain toxins along with small amounts of heavy metals).

Waste material from mines that contain metal sulfides can lead to sulfuric acid drainage.  Tailings also contain minerals and materials that can lead to dangerous runoff and water contamination when stored improperly. Some mine waste and tailing dump sites are structurally unsound and often overflow and break, allowing contaminants to spill out over the surrounding environment. In some cases, mines will have long pipes or waste canals that carry tailings to waterways for dumping.


Disposing of Mine Tailings

Disposal of mine tailings is usually the single biggest environmental concern facing a hardrock metal mine, and creates very long-term environmental liabilities which future generations must manage.  Many mine tailings do not become appreciably safer over time, if stored properly, and therefore must be stored for an indefinite period using wet or dry storage:

Wet Storage in Pits and Lakes

Requirements:

  • long-term oversight
  • facility maintenance
  • perpetual water treatment ·         
Disposal Options:
  • dispose of tailings as a wet mud, held in pits lined with clay or a synthetic liner
  • put the tailings back into the original mining pit
  • use entire existing valleys sealed off with earthen dams
  • store tailings in natural lakes

On-Land "Dry-Stack" Storage

Requirements:
  • high upfront cost
  • perpetual treatment and maintenance
Disposal Process:
  • tailings are dried into a solid matter
  • the solid tailings are transported by truck or conveyor instead of pipeline
  • buried in a covered and lined pit




To get information on how EnviroBlend can help in the remediation of Mine Tailings - Click Here
 
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