Lao delegation learns about long-term mine site management

06 Oct 2010 12:00 AMMedia Release

Savannakhet and Vilabouly government officials and local community representatives undertook a study tour to Kelian Equatorial Mining in Indonesia from 14-19 September 2010. 

The Kelian Mine operated from 1992 to 2005 and is regarded as a good example of the proper long-term management of a former mining site in a tropical environment. Mr Saman Aneka, Director of MMG Lane Xang Minerals Ltd, said:

“While the Sepon Mine has many years of operation ahead of it, good mine closure planning early in the mine’s life is necessary to ensure the long term sustainable development of the local area. The approach also accords with international best practice and MMG’s sustainable development responsibilities.”

The study tour provided an opportunity for the delegation to see the steps required to look after older mine areas and conduct rehabilitation when mining has been completed. The delegation was able to learn first hand about the roles of key participants form various sectors ranging from the government, the host community, NGOs and other relevant stakeholders.

The group visited different sites, including the tailings storage facility, the waste water discharge management facility, the nursery and local community development works which demonstrated different approaches to rehabilitation. The different forms of land use included reforestation, creation of wetland environments and in some cases the handover of facilities to the local community.

The visit was led by Dr. Souphan Keomixay, Vice Governor of Savannakhet Province, Mr. Bousone Mahavong, Vilabouly District Chief, representatives from the Environment Impact Assessment Department of WREA; representatives from Vilabouly’s two ethnic groups, Phu Tai and Mon Khmer, as well as members of the MMG Sepon Senior Management Team who also took part in the tour.

The Kelian Equatorial Mining was a medium sized gold mine located in Borneo, Kalimantan, Indonesia. The mine started in 1992 and operated under a 30-year mining concession agreement with the Government of Indonesia. The project employed more than 2,000 people. The project established a Mine Closure Steering Committee early in its planning process to oversee planned works, as well as allocate specific funds to run agricultural training programs and provide sustainable jobs for the local population.

Photo: Lao government officials led by Dr. Souphan Keomixay, Vice Governor of Savannakhet Province, second from the right at the front row, and MMG Sepon Senior Management Team.

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Pasanngane Keoboualapha
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