Waste Management

Mineral Waste 

Our mining and processing activities generate significant quantities of mineral waste. Our aim is to minimise our impacts by managing our waste safely and appropriately, reducing our overall footprint of disturbed land and supporting long-term closure planning.  

Our mineral waste can be broken down into two components: 

  • Waste Rock: Extracted during the mining process. 
  • Tailings: The residue left after processing minerals with water. 

Some of this mineral waste can be chemically reactive and has the potential to create acid and metalliferous drainage (AMD). If not identified early and managed effectively, AMD can negatively impact water quality and the success of land rehabilitation. 

To address this, we implement control plans that focus on characterizing mineral waste and managing its storage. Our strategies include: 

  • Using Waste Rock as Underground Mine Backfill: This minimises surface impact. 
  • Stockpiling Waste Rock: We do this where there is potential to extract metal value from it in the future. 
  • Creating Surface Waste Rock Dump Landforms: These are designed to manage waste rock placement, and these have adequate engineered drainage controls to manage any acid metalliferous drainage and runoff (AMD). 

Our goal is to minimise the amount of waste rock in surface landforms at closure. While some operations require closure strategies for historical waste rock legacies, recent waste rock dumps at Rosebery and Las Bambas have been designed with closure in mind from the outset. 

Non-mineral waste 

Beyond mineral wastes, our operations also generate non-mineral wastes, including oils and general refuse. To ensure responsible waste management, we adhere to all local jurisdictional requirements related to waste characterisation, hazardous waste transport, and onsite waste disposal facility design, management, and closure. 

Our commitment extends to minimising the environmental impact of non-mineral wastes, safeguarding both the ecosystem and surrounding communities. By complying with regulations and implementing effective waste management practices, we contribute to sustainable operations and responsible resource utilisation.