Mining produces millions of tons of waste each year. Contaminants from unreclaimed or unremediated areas have affected millions of acres of land and over 10,000 miles of stream. Historical mining practices and the absence of routine mined-land reclamation, remediation, and restoration have led to legacy sites with significant environmental and human health impacts. New mining operations continue to have severe waste issues that must be addressed during and after the actual mining operation. Conventional remedial solutions are often lengthy, expensive, and unacceptable to the regulated and regulatory communities, as well as to the public.
ITRC's Mining Waste Team developed the ITRC Web-based Mining Waste Treatment Technology Selection site to assist project managers in selecting an applicable technology, or suite of technologies, which can be used to remediate mine waste contaminated sites. Decision trees, through a series of questions, guide users to a set of treatment technologies that may be applicable to that particular site situation. Each technology is described, along with a summary of the applicability, advantages, limitations, performance, stakeholder and regulatory considerations, and lessons learned. Each technology overview links to case studies where the technology has been implemented. In this associated Internet-based training, instructors provide background information then take participants through the decision tree using example sites. Project managers, regulators, site owners, and community stakeholders should attend this training class to learn how to use the ITRC Web-based Mining Waste Treatment Technology Selection site to identify appropriate technologies, address all impacted media, access case studies, and understand potential regulatory constraints.