CSIRO Report unveils lucrative opportunities for sustainable mine closures
The report highlights the potential to generate jobs in regional and Indigenous communities, projecting an annual spend surpassing $4 billion on mine closure and rehabilitation activities as approximately 240 mines across Australia near closure by 2040.
The CSIRO's recent report, 'Enabling Mine Closure and Transitions: Opportunities for Australian Industry,' unveils a lucrative prospect for Australia in establishing a burgeoning industry supporting mine closures and transitions.
Drawing from extensive mining industry databases and CSIRO analysis, the report emphasizes the imminent need for innovative solutions and technologies to navigate the multifaceted challenges accompanying mine closures.
It stresses the pivotal role of these closures in fostering demand for forward-thinking approaches capable of steering mines towards closure while addressing environmental, social, and economic complexities.
Developed for the Cooperative Research Centre for Transformations in Mining Economies (CRC TiME), the report delves into avenues for Australian businesses to provide crucial solutions catering to the exigencies posed by mine closures.
Dominic Banfield, Senior Manager in CSIRO Futures and the report's lead author said, “With thousands of active and inactive mines in Australia, the demand for mine closure solutions will only increase as we seek to ensure positive closures and to transition regions to successful post-mining futures,” Mr Banfield said.
The report delineates four key categories of mine closure solutions: engagement and partnership, waste reduction and recovery, mine rehabilitation, and land use transitions. These categories present opportunities for innovations facilitating effective engagement, sustainable waste management, enhanced rehabilitation practices, and the establishment of enduring post-closure land uses that yield economic, social, or environmental value.
Dr. Guy Boggs, CEO of CRC TiME, said, “The report's comprehensive mapping highlights opportunities in engagement and partnership, waste reduction and recovery, mine rehabilitation, and land use transitions, showcasing the diverse spectrum of possibilities.”
“Looking ahead, we believe Australia can harness its domestic mine challenge to emerge as a global leader in cutting-edge mine closure solutions.”