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Project 3.12

Long-term performance of cover system at Kidston

Research Program

Operational Solutions

Project Leader

David Williams

Project ID

3.12

Summary

In the late 1990’s, Kidston’s developed an innovative “store and release” cover system, and an innovative slope treatment, involving the over-dumping and aerial seeding of growth medium over benign angle of repose rock, on potentially acid forming (PAF) mineralised waste rock dumps (WRDs). Cover performance was instrumented, and monitored until 2004. This study aims to assess the performance of the cover and slope treatment over time and to develop recommendations on the appropriateness of the store and release cover system and slope treatment for PAF waste rock in Australia’s semi-arid climatic regions.

Management and control of PAF waste rock dumps is a significant issue for the mining industry, carrying a high and long-term cost. For Industry, Governments and other stakeholders, developing appropriate management and controls is imperative to retaining a Social Licence to operate.

This project has seven years of high quality published data as a foundation to leverage off. An opportunity exists to revisit Kidston (permission from the current lease holders, Genex Power Limited, has been granted for the study) to understand the changes in the cover (geomorphic, biophysical and hydrological) and slope treatment over the last 17 years, for one of the first engineered store and release cover systems installed worldwide.

It will enable CRC TiME to demonstrate and deliver on a “shovel ready” project.

Project Partners

University of Queensland

Duration

3 months