British Columbia Mine Reclamation Symposium

Some examples from Boliden's programme for mine sites reclamation Lindvall, Manfred


Since 1924, Boliden has been operating nearly 50 mines and 13 concentrators in Sweden and an additional 6 mines in other countries. In the last 10-15 years, substantial effort has been put into reclamation of closed sites. As a general principle, site specific solutions have been developed, aiming at walk away solutions. The techniques used are in most cases combinations of flooding and dry cover, but also innovations such as groundwater saturation have been introduced. Various methods to enhance the integrity of the reclaimed area by establishing sustainable vegetation have been applied. A significant step forward has been taken by using various waste fractions from the municipal society. Without exception, the results have surpassed the forecast. New ecosystems are developing, with a wide variety of species on reclaimed areas and fish populations are establishing in flooded tailings ponds. The challenge for the future will be to develop principles and methods for transferring reclaimed areas back to society. To accomplish such a process, innovative solutions for new land uses will be required. This calls for an approach that reaches beyond the strictly technical considerations. This paper will give a brief review of the principles and the programme for mine site reclamation and the technical considerations involved, focusing on the conditions in Sweden, where the majority of the sites in the reference list are found.

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