I was recently asked to write a testimonial for an upcoming book being published by SME. The book is titled, “Mine Tailings Perspectives for a Changing World”. We need more books like this. The following is a draft of that testimonial.
On Thursday October 19th, 2019, it was my pleasure to once again host the Elko Roundtable. My co-host for the event was my good friend Rick Frechette. In the day-long event, we discussed the topic, “Geotechnical Mine Designs Under the New Global Microscope”. The topic was developed after the fairly shocking recent failures of tailings facilities in Brazil.
The SME’s new book, “Mine Tailings Perspectives for a Changing World” was completed in very much the same spirit as the 2019 Elko Roundtable. While tailings practitioners have generally long been aware of such dangers, the 2014 failure of the Mount Polley TSF in British Columbia awoke the Canadian mining industry to the realities that still exist, despite the many Canadian efforts to develop world-class guidance documents for mining dams. With all those good practices and traditions, it was a shock to the Canadian mining community that such an event would ever occur within their borders. It was not until the Samarco, and then the Brumadinho disaster that the rest of the world’s mining operators sat up and took note.
“Mine Tailings Perspectives for a Changing World” provides dialog and guidance from tailings practitioners and mine owners in a unique format that is easy to read, and is free from advanced mathematics and most of the industry jargon, with discussions on governance, culture, tailings testing, preparation method, design, construction, operation, monitoring, closure and many other aspects pertaining to tailings facilities. This book, which is a combination of contributed papers and panel discussions written as narratives, should be read from cover-to-cover by mine owners, tailings facility operators, tailings facility responsible persons, accountable executives and well as tailings designers.