Tatenda Mutsvanga, Jemitias Mapira, Nyashadzashe Ngaza


The question of the sustainability of a mine is extremely difficult to answer, and requires substantive data and other issues to be put into context. This study highlights the major types of waste that are accumulating in a mine both surface and underground. The study also reveals what has been done by Renco Mine in dealing with waste associated with the mining of gold. It shows that little has been done in the reduction of waste generated by mining activities. The issue of waste management is correctly perceived to be a major issue for municipal councils and the manufacturing, construction and chemicals industries. There is less recognition, however, of the vastly larger quantity of solid wastes produced by the mining industry. The reasons for this are most likely due to the perceived relatively benign nature of mine wastes, remoteness from populations, apparent success in mine waste management, or other factors. Waste rock is generally the only waste type which could pose a significant long term environmental threat, as it could contain significant sulfide mineralization. This paper examines waste management challenges at Renco Mine (Zimbabwe) and makes several recommendations at the end.


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