Reclaiming mined-out areas Rehabilitating mines Restoring abandoned mine sites
Standard mine rehabilitation procedures include: landscaping; management of topsoil; revegetation; managing waste dumps, acid, alkaline and saline sites, heavy metals and toxic chemicals; removal of access roads and constructions.
In the last 200 years vast mining operations have been initiated to provide fuel and materials to the industrial revolution. Large open pits, waste dumps, stripped pasture land, and eroded hillsides, and swamps have resulted from these operations. Conservation movements, particularly in the last 30 years, have promoted restoration of these areas into graded slopes, seeded meadows, planted forests and dunes, and fishing ponds. In addition, some abandoned urban land has been converted into gardens, parks and sports areas.
In South Australia, mining operators are required under the Mining Act to pay a royalty (currently 10 cents per tonne) on all materials produced. The resulting Extractive Areas Rehabilitation Fund is used to finance approved rehabilitation projects. Often this is done with the assistance of horticultural advisers and rehabilitation consultants.
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