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Sep 15

Case study – An approach to optimising closure designs for a site in Central Laos

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Date & Time
15 September 2021 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
(UTC+10:00) Australia/Sydney

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Tickets: $10 for non members.  Members sign in for free tickets.


Topic PresenterClaire Linklater, SRK


Date: 15 September 2021

Time: 14:30 to 15:30 (Australian Eastern Standard Time)

Presentation Overview : In this presentation, Claire Linklater will present an overview of the multidisciplinary technical studies SRK undertook in support of the development of closure plans for an extensive mine site in Central Laos, and the practical implications of the overall closure strategy.

Inputs included including the development of a site-wide water and load balance, assessment of the geotechnical stability of pit walls and dumps, and geochemical characterisation to understand the distribution of ongoing sources of solute production around the site. Specific issues associated with the site include proximity of local communities and accessibility of the site, stability of the pit high walls and exposure of acid forming rock on the high walls, positive water balances for the pit lakes and the large distance across which the site is spread. Future water quality predictions were combined with the site-wide water balance to develop an integrated closure strategy for the site, identifying optimal closure measures to mitigate water quality impacts to downstream receptors (drinking water resources) and ensure public safety.  Conceptual closure designs for waste rock dumps and pits were developed incorporating both passive and active water management infrastructure. 

Presenter Profile : Claire has 30 years’ experience in geochemical characterisation and modelling, acid rock drainage assessment, water quality prediction, and closure planning. Claire has extensive experience in the interpretation of geochemical data, building conceptual models of processes that control in situ geochemical behaviour, and the application of geochemical modelling codes. Her early career was focused on management of radioactive wastes, understanding and quantifying the geochemical behaviour and mobility of radionuclides in the ‘geosphere’ surrounding a proposed underground repository and assessing the long-term stability of engineered and natural barriers. More recently, she has focused on mine water quality: acid/alkaline rock drainage assessment and prediction; water quality and pollutant mobility from waste rock dumps, tailings storage facilities, underground workings, and pit walls; and assessing the effectiveness of potential mine closure strategies.

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