Services

Mine Closure Planning

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Mine Closure Plans can be prepared to fulfil a range of requirements and tailored to comply with corporate, regulatory or national/international guidelines as required. Closure Plans can be prepared using existing baseline information, commitments and designs or updates and revisions of existing plans undertaken to ensure they comply with guidance documents. Trajectory has extensive experience in the preparation of closure plans in the Asia Pacific region including Western Australia, the Northern Territory, Queensland and internationally in New Zealand, New Guinea and North America. Previous and existing closure planning projects include work with clients including Newmont, Rio Tinto, Atlas Iron Limited, Crosslands, Alacer Gold Corporation, Saracen, La Mancha, Evolution Mining, Mineral Resources Limited, Kimberly Diamonds, Newcrest and multinational Oil and Gas corporations.

A focus of closure planning is long term cost and risk mitigation and a collaborative approach across disciplines and operational and technical areas to ensure plans are well integrated and appropriately reflected within an organisations management systems and financial processes. Closure Plans can be prepared to various levels of detail from conceptual plans to detailed implementation plans which include detailed guidance for contractors and operators.

In addition to constructing closure and rehabilitation solutions Trajectory is able to provide peer reviews and audits of existing plans and approvals documentation to provide an additional internal review or an external third party review function. Audits and peer reviews can be undertaken to identify strengths, weaknesses and opportunities against guidelines specified by the client. This process can be value adding both in the identification of gaps or inconsistencies and also in the identification of cost and resource saving opportunities.


Landform and Drainage Design

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This service involves providing, often in collaboration with multidisciplinary teams, landform design outcomes which are appropriate to the material characteristics, climatic conditions, revegetation targets and construction capabilities of the specific operation. This initially involves developing a good grasp of the geochemical and geophysical properties of the various lithotypes and ensuring that they are appropriately segregated for encapsulation or use depending on their properties. Once these parameters are established key specifications of landforms including cover requirements, batter slope design, berm configuration, drainage measures, armouring requirements and topsoil deployment prioritisation can be determined.

The determination of specifications may also be influenced by conditions and commitments, as dumped circumstances, proximity to other infrastructure, cost effectiveness considerations and operational or scheduling requirements. All of these things can be considered and accommodated to the degree that the success of the rehabilitated landform is not compromised.

In addition to design specifications landform planning activities can assist with the development of scheduled work instructions or tasks such that the design is provided in appropriate guidance documentation for those undertaking the implementation of the design. Follow up progress inspections, as constructed reporting and assistance with variations due to changes of circumstances can all be built into the planning documentation.


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Rehabilitation Planning

Rehabilitation Planning involves the integration of the biological considerations with the physical considerations in the closure exercise. Rehabilitation activities include the determination of the water management strategies such that plant available water is harvested and stored, plant nutrient considerations, seed selection, seed delivery methodology, surface treatments, off landform impacts such as sediments control and long term rehabilitation management including fencing, weed management and feral animal control.

As part of this service, integration advice can be provided to the client planning and engineering group such that biological aspects are considered in the deployment of materials, the determination of water management measures and the reprofiling design specifications. The local specialists with regard to the flora extant on the site are consulted to ascertain the primary species which should be represented in the seed mix. Investigations are undertaken as to what species are generally successful in seeding programs regionally and which should be prominent in the seed mixes and which do not propagate from seed. A determination is made as to what fertiliser, if any, is appropriate for the conditions presented. An understanding of what seed treatments may be appropriate to increase germinability of seeds of the specific environment/species in question. Seed delivery is investigated such that the most appropriate method of mechanical or hand seeding is selected. Consideration is given in the preparation of seed mixes for issues such as dominance and successions change which can lead to an undesirable outcome in the long term revegetation of the site.

A determination of the kind of surface treatment, including the type of ripping, tine configurations, depth of ripping on different types of disturbance is also an important consideration. This may involve the acquisition or design and construction of an appropriate ground engaging tools in some instances.

The setting of management guidelines for post rehabilitation era to limit grazing pressure, minimise weed occurrence and identify and mitigate off footprint impacts such as sediment discharges are important to the long term success of the project.


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Liability and Risk Assessments

Mine closure liability cost estimation methodology is not always supported by clearly defined or mandated guidance tools. There are a range of different liability estimation requirements and approaches depending on the reporting objective or purpose of the liability assessment. These often include bankable feasibility studies, due diligence assessments, compliance with international, national or internal accounting standards or estimates for the calculation or performance bonds or assurances which vary for the different regulatory jurisdictions in Australia.

The Western Australian government recently finalised a “Guideline for the Preparation of Mine Closure Plans” which includes a requirement for the preparation estimates of mine closure liabilities. Although these estimates are reportable only upon request by the Department of Minerals and Petroleum, the methodologies through which they are derived must be provided within Mine Closure Plans.

Trajectory has completed detailed and accurate mine closure liability estimates for minesites throughout Australia and Internationally and has presented on the subject to several conferences and by request to regulators.


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Weed Management Planning and Implementation

The completion of rehabilitation monitoring has become more and more detailed and expensive as time has gone by in the mining industry and this is reflected in the growing detail and complexity of Completion Criteria which is closely linked to monitoring. This is not necessarily a healthy development as monitoring becomes more time consuming and expensive and highly specific Completion Criteria more difficult to attain over all areas of a project.

Trajectory can design and implement monitoring programs which are much lower cost, lower frequency and yet more representative and realistic through the combination of affordable remote sensing or spatial imagery data and negotiated Completion Criteria which are realistic and achievable.


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Rehabilitation Monitoring and Completion Criteria

The completion of rehabilitation monitoring has become more and more detailed and expensive as time has gone by in the mining industry and this is reflected in the growing detail and complexity of Completion Criteria which is closely linked to monitoring. This is not necessarily a healthy development as monitoring becomes more time consuming and expensive and highly specific Completion Criteria more difficult to attain over all areas of a project.

Trajectory can design and implement monitoring programs which are much lower cost, lower frequency and yet more representative and realistic through the combination of affordable remote sensing or spatial imagery data and negotiated Completion Criteria which are realistic and achievable.


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Regulator and Stakeholder Engagement Processes

Over two decades of experience with dealing with key stakeholders, particularly Indigenous People, Background Landholders and Regulators has given Trajectory a capacity to assist with the facilitation of meetings, consultation processes and negotiations in a range of stakeholder interface processes including Native Title, Heritage Management and the facilitation of improvements to participation of Indigenous and local content in the provision of services to mine sites which are value adding,, realistic and effective.

Successful engagement, consultation and business development initiatives have been undertaken in many locations throughout Australia and similar initiatives have been observed first hand and studies globally.


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AMD Management and Cover Design

Trajectory has worked on a great many projects where fit for purpose and location specific geochemistry review and AMD planning has dramatically improved outcomes.

Mines need targeted and pragmatic geochemistry testing and analysis coupled with designs which relate both to the climate physical environment in which the materials are being managed.

AMD management programs need to be robust and consider from the outset of mine planning the avaialbe cover materials, the opportunities to maximise the utilisation of neutralising material and mine planning constraints and opportunities to best management the placement of material.


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Peer Review and Audits

In addition to constructing closure, rehabilitation and external affairs solutions Trajectory is able to provide peer reviews and audits of existing plans and approvals documentation to provide an additional internal review or an external third party review function. Audits and peer reviews can be undertaken to identify strengths, weaknesses and opportunities against guidelines specified by the client including regulatory guidelines, national and international codes and accounting standards or internal corporate standards. This process can be value adding both in the identification of gaps or inconsistencies and also in the identification of cost and resource saving opportunities.

This may include closure plans, liability assessments, landform designs, weed management plans, stakeholder engagement plans and SIA’s or feasibility studies. The application of experience and critical analysis skills coupled with a fresh set of eyes without corporate or commercial interests has often reveals significant risks, flaws, invalid assumptions, inaccurate input data or substantial missed optimisation opportunities through a very simple and inexpensive review process.