Importance of early rehabilitation planning - case studies from North West Queensland

Gillespie, M. J. and Erskine, P. D. (2012). Importance of early rehabilitation planning - case studies from North West Queensland. In: Life-of-Mine 2012: Conference Proceedings. Life of Mine Conference (AusIMM), Brisbane Australia, (187-196). 10-12 July 2012.

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Name Description MIMEType Size Downloads
Author Gillespie, M. J.
Erskine, P. D.
Title of paper Importance of early rehabilitation planning - case studies from North West Queensland
Conference name Life of Mine Conference (AusIMM)
Conference location Brisbane Australia
Conference dates 10-12 July 2012
Proceedings title Life-of-Mine 2012: Conference Proceedings
Place of Publication Carlton North, VIC, Australia
Publisher The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM)
Publication Year 2012
Sub-type Fully published paper
ISBN 9781921522666
Start page 187
End page 196
Total pages 10
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted Abstract/Summary
Mine site rehabilitation generally includes the re-shaping of overburden to create a final landform, manipulation of substrates and subsequent revegetation. Due to the wide range of environmental variables that influence rehabilitation progression, having clearly-stated final land-use goals and ongoing significant contributions to the planning process, from prefeasibility through to mine closure, is essential for achieving stable landforms and sustainable rehabilitated communities. Two examples of rehabilitation processes in the phosphate rich region of North West Queensland are used to illustrate some of the possible benefits of early planning and communication of rehabilitation requirements.

Approximately 160 km south of Mount Isa, Incitec Pivot Limited operates a 35 year old open cut mine at Phosphate Hill. Monitoring of rehabilitation areas and selected analogue sites is undertaken annually, but the initial landform design, substrate management and species selection has created a difficult environment for revegetated areas to successfully establish. Constant management input (such as weed management, erosion control, supplementary seeding, etc) will, therefore, be required over a long time frame.

The second example uses exploratory drilling and historic costean pits at Legend International Holding’s Paradise South site, 135 km north of Mount Isa, to determine the success of natural vegetation colonisation on waste rock and compacted soils, and the effects of cattle grazing on recolonisation. This information can be used by planners of the mine life to inform possible endland use decisions and proposed completion criteria.

In a semi-arid environment such as North West Queensland, the creation of a post-mine landscape suitable for nature conservation and/or grazing can be an arduous task. The input from environmental personnel at all stages of the mining process will positively impact upon the quality of the resulting rehabilitation and ensure undesirable legacy issues are minimised.
Q-Index Code E1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

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Created: Tue, 12 Mar 2013, 16:16:57 EST by Melina Gillespie on behalf of Centre For Mined Land Rehabilitation