Predictive geochemical modeling of long-term environmental impacts from waste rocks
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Jan 1, 2000
Contaminated mine drainage presents a potential hazard for aquatic ecosystems and groundwater resources. Reliable predictions of long-term developments in seepage quality are necessary to select reasonable decommissioning options and remediation measures for waste-rock heaps during mine closure and/or mining site rehabilitation to minimize future risks and environmental hazards. Extensive geochemical modeling work was used to assess the consequences of various remediation options for waste rock heaps at a former uranium mine in Eastern Germany. The predicted contaminant discharges are used for an assessment of long- term benefits of decommissioning alternatives to derive conclusions for sustainable remediation measures using risk-based cost/benefit analyses.