Dealing with legacy mines in the 21st Century

Natural resources, Australia Image credit: User: AMLR_NRMB

According to a news release from the Northern Territory, the Government is using new technology to remotely monitor legacy mining sites in remote and isolated parts of the Territory.

Dealing with legacy mines in the 21st Century
Natural resources, Australia
Image credit: User: AMLR_NRMB

A program of installing the remote monitoring stations at key sites across the Territory has already begun, with two monitoring stations already installed and transmitting data to the Darwin office.

Minister for Mines and Energy, Willem Westra van Holthe, revealed a further two similarly equipped sites (Redbank Mine & Goodall Mine) were planned to be in place prior to the onset of the 2014/15 Wet Season.

“Due to the Territory’s challenging climate and limited access to some remote sites during the Wet Season, it is important that data monitoring continues even when our staff can’t physically be there. We are making full use of satellite and mobile broadband technology to transmit real time data to mining officers which is a huge step forward in monitoring these sites.” Mr Westra van Holthe said.

The monitoring equipment is expected to collect data that includes pit water levels, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and temperature.

“At one site that is completely inaccessible for up to six months of the year, it will allow solar pumps removing contaminated groundwater to be monitored and remotely controlled from Darwin,” he said.

The Environmental Rehabilitation Levy, which has generated $6.5 million to date, has gone towards addressing the Territory’s legacy mining liabilities and funds a range of activities intended to ensure mining legacies are strategically addressed and the current mining activities do not develop legacy issues.