Predictive Modelling & Risk Assessment

Predicting mine site water quality is a key element of mine planning best practice. SRK can help in all stages of this process from predictive water quality modelling to suggesting and trialling treatment options. Correctly predicting mine site water quality and associated risk is essential to limit costs associated with over engineering or unplanned pollution incident.

Services

  • Predictive modelling of mine site water quality including waste rock, tailings and pit lake geochemistry;
  • numerical modelling of both passive and active mine water treatment options;
  • fate transport modelling (e.g. uranium) and prediction of contaminate attenuation (e.g. cyanide and arsenic);
  • process geochemical modellin; and
  • risk assessment based on geochemical prediction.

Approach

  • A conceptual model is constructed from the best available geological meteorological, hydrogeological, water quality, and waste rock geochemical characterisation data
  • From this, a numerical model is constructed using either PhreeqC or Geochemist Workbench software;
  • a number of model simulations (or sensitivities) are run to identify the most sensitive parameters; and
  • a Screening Level Ecological Risk Assessment (SLERA) is made based on model results.

Experience

SRK has a geochemical team whose members are respected in both corporate and academic fields. To date we have completed numerous mine site water quality predictions with SLERA style risk; assessment, uranium transport, cyanide and arsenic attenuation, passive and active mine water treatment systems. In a number of cases the predictions have had to stand up to rigorous environmental agency scrutiny.

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