How Can Mining Activities be Made More Environmentally Sustainable?

17 March 17

Mining remains the country’s most important industry, contributing about 18% of South Africa’s GDP, 60% of exports, more than 500,000 direct jobs, and more than 800,000 indirect jobs. Through taxes and other benefits, mining pays for 20 cents in every Rand that is invested in public infrastructure and social benefits.

Mining, in spite of being an essential activity, is often condemned for being not so favorable for the environment. However, since it is extremely useful for the sustainable growth and development of not just particular areas but a Nation as a whole, it can be made more environmentally sustainable. The Yzermyn coal projects in South Africa undertaken by Atha Group, who have track record of sustainable mining for the past 60 years, adapt practices such as reducing water and energy consumption, minimising waste production and so on to ensure successful mining activity without causing any sort of damage to the environment. So, following are some of the ways in which mining can be made more useful for both the environment as well as humankind. The mining industry is one of the foundations upon which South Africa can build its future. It can be an engine in its own right and it can help us develop skills and expertise that can be applied across a much broader range of businesses.

Reducing Mining Imprint– Mining corporations in South Africa and all over the world are concentrating on maximum utilisation of materials in order to facilitate the smooth availability of goods and services for the people in the mining area. Reduction of the amount of wasteful use and steering production towards the use of reusable goods are the prominent ways in which the mining industry can diminish its negative impact on an international scale.

Strict Adherence to Mining Regulations – There are lots of rules and regulations that are supposed to be followed but are hardly adhered to in the real world. While the regulations and legislations vary from country to country, adherence to the strict government mandates goes a long way in ensuring successful and effective mining with least possible environmental damage.

Accurate Reporting of Toxic Mining Waste – Several mining corporations are found not to be very accurate in reporting toxic mining waste or more simply, the amount of waste that is being dumped into the environment. Thus, the real picture remains blurry and the damage that is being caused is never apprehended in the true sense. Sustainable mining has to be more in practice than in paper and for this, corporations have to follow ethical practices and work more towards environment management.

Atha Africa Ventures takes up Yzermyn mining activity, putting utmost focus on sustainable environmental management. The company has already committed R83.5 million towards environment protection and sets waste management and rehabilitation of existing alien-invaded wetlands as its primary focus areas. Atha Africa Ventures is commiteed to partnering with local government, NGOs and community leaders has been critical to ensuring that the company contributes meaningfully to its mining communities, through investments in housing, education, sanitation and healthcare.