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Why are mine rehabilitation targets and objectives important?

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Mining & Resources

Why are mine rehabilitation targets and objectives important?

Setting mine rehab (rehabilitation) objectives are essential to provide a basis for stakeholder input and consultation across all key stages. These objectives will typically vary between sites or within a single site.
According to the Australian Government’s Depart of Industry, Innovation and Science, mine rehabilitation objectives may involve:

  • the restoration or rehabilitation of the area so that the pre-mining conditions are replicated (75% of mines in Australia use native plant species because the establishment of native ecosystems gives the greatest chance of self-sustainability)
  • rehabilitation to improve the pre-mining conditions (for example, some coal mining rehabilitation increases the livestock carrying capacity of the land)
  • rehabilitation to a new landform, land capability or final land use (golf courses, wetlands, plantations, housing subdivisions and recreational playing fields have all been established on old mining sites).
The scale and type of mining impacts along with environmental factors affect a mine site’s ability to achieve rehabilitation targets. In Australia, many mine sites exist in environmentally challenging conditions where physical resources such as nutrient-rich soil and regular rainfall are limited. Therefore the likelihood of successful rehabilitation is difficult to predict when coupled with the scale of disturbance.

To find out more about mine rehabilitation, check out our FREE guide here.


FAQ:

What is mine rehabilitation?

According to the Department of Industry, Tourism and Resources, mine rehab (rehabilitation) is “the process used to repair the impacts of mining on the environment. Mine rehabilitation can also be referred to as coal mine rehabilitation, land rehabilitation, mine site rehabilitation or mine site restoration. The long-term objectives of rehabilitation can vary from simply converting an area to a safe and stable condition, to restoring the pre-mining conditions as closely as possible to support the future sustainability of the site”.

What are the different types of mine rehabilitation?

According to the Minerals Council of Australia, there are several different types of mine rehabilitation including: cropping, conservation, grazing, and native restoration.

Why should a mine be rehabilitated?

According to the Federal Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, there are four key factors that make up the business case for mine rehabilitation. They are: 1. Project approval 2. Compliance risk 3. Financial liability 4. Reputational risk


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