Mining Impacts

Mining in New Zealand is an important part of the economy being valued at $1.5B/year, excluding petroleum (Crown Minerals 2007). Mining has been part of New Zealand's history since the 1800s and produces gold, coal, aggregates, industrial minerals, limestone and iron sands. However, mining can have significant impacts on the environment; therefore mining must be managed in a way to minimise those impacts and ensure environmental sustainability.

A framework to assist with planning of future mine developments on the West Coast and in Southland has been developed as part of a collaborative research programme.  This framework draws together research on rock geochemistry, aquatic chemistry, freshwater ecology, aquatic toxicity, and management and remediation techniques for mining from scientists at CRL Energy Ltd, Landcare Research and the Universities of Otago and Canterbury

It was developed in conjunction with stakeholders/end-users including the West Coast Regional Council, Environment Southland, Department of Conservation, Solid Energy NZ Ltd, Oceania Gold, Francis Mining and consultants.

This framework is intended to enable informed decision-making for proposed mining operations, specifically around minimising impacts on streams. The framework also acts as guide to the type of information that should be included in assessments of environmental effects provided in consent applications for mining operations.

Document Links

A framework for preventing water quality impact on streams from mining (PDF, 670KB)

Predicting the effects of coal mines on aquatic environments (PDF, 282KB)

Using stream insects to predict the health of rivers with coal mine inputs (PDF, 684KB)

How do we prevent mining activities from contaminating streams? (PDF, 278KB)

 Mine Drainage full document

Guidelines for mine rehabilitation in Westland

Page reviewed: 08 Jan 2015 12:56pm