- Mineral waste as a resource: re-mining
Mineral waste includes tailings, waste rock, sludge and slag. We aim to reprocess these waste streams where feasible in an effort to extract PGMs, alter the post-mining landscape, and deliver circular-economy value.
At Impala Rustenburg, the re-mining of tailings at its dormant TSF has progressed well and continues to ensure host community beneficiation from the project through the joint venture reclamation company established with the Luka community. The Impala Rustenburg re-mining project has created 44 permanent jobs, mainly for host community members.
As at the end of FY2021, 3 354 930 tonnes had been remined resulting in 29 634 Oz PGE recovered. About 5 000 tonnes are re-mined daily. Plans are in place to ramp up to 10 000 tonnes during 2022, which will create an additional 20 permanent job opportunities. During peak construction periods there will be between 35 and 70 additional job opportunities. The life of the project is anticipated to be between 12 and 14 years.
The progressive removal of the tailings facility and land rehabilitation process, with further community involvement, will provide available land (up to 200ha) and reduce dust pollution, as well as reduce mine closure liabilities.
At Impala Canada, waste rock from the legacy surface stockpiles associated with a dormant open pit is used for underground backfilling and for the TSF expansion project. The operation is piloting the effectiveness of using various carbon-rich recycled materials such as overburden from dams, ash and wood waste for revegetation on tailings surfaces.