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Environmental Certifications in Mining Exploration Projects

Osvaldo Aduvire
Monday, May 20, 2019
First presented: 
PROEXPLO 2019 11th International Congress of Prospectors and Explorers
Published paper

The direct consequence resulting from mining activity when carrying out the exploration or exploitation of a deposit involves changes in the physical environment, ranging from the geoavailability of materials, which can alter the quality of surrounding water and soil, to the emission of noise and fine particle emissions into the atmosphere, which if left uncontrolled can affect the area's environmental quality.

In order to reverse this problem, a number of regulations have been implemented in recent years in Peru, and mainly in the mining sector, such as: National System of Environmental Impact Assessment Law and its regulations, Law on Water Resources, resolution on Discharges in Mining and Metallurgical Activities (MAL), Environmental Quality Standards (EQS) for water, air, noise and soil, regulations governing the process of citizen participation in the mining sub-sector, etc., which, combined with other mandatory legal provisions, such as the closure legislation, allow for a better environmental management in mining.

The environmental and social legislation in force for Peruvian mining aims to ensure the development of sustainable mining projects that contemplate the control of impacts on the environment and surrounding communities, through continuous monitoring programs included in mandatory environmental certifications, such as environmental impact assessments and closure plans, in addition to construction permits and authorizations for water use, dumping, waste management, certificates of non-existence of archaeological remains, and others.

This paper provides a general overview of the environmental legislation involved in the development of a mining project (exploration, exploitation and processing), considering that the mining company makes temporary use of the land, requires start-up environmental certifications (EIS, EIA-sd, EIA-d) to start the project and, once the operation stage is completed, whether it is exploration or exploitation, other environmental certifications are required to proceed with the rehabilitation of the occupied areas (Closure Plan). A descriptive analysis is also made regarding the enforcement of current general, intersectoral and sectoral legislation to be considered in the formulation and development of a mining exploration project, categorized as type-I and type-II projects.

Feature Author

Osvaldo Aduvire

Dr. Osvaldo Aduvire is a consultant with more than 30 years of experience in mining and environmental projects conducting environmental impact assessment, closure plans and design of acid water treatment plants. Osvaldo has a vast experience in technical-economic evaluation of mining projects, evaluation of occupational and environmental risks, geomechanical characterization of rock masses, design and reclamation of waste dumps and landfills, EIAs for mining and civil work projects, characterization of the acid/base generation potential of waste rock and mine waste, design of mining operations, sizing of machinery, geochemical characterization of mine effluents and pit lakes, passive treatment of acidic waters, application of bio-engineering to reclamation works, and preparation of mine closure plans.

Osvaldo Aduvire (Specialist in Geochemistry and Mine Clousure)
SRK Lima
SRK Africa