Slimes Management Workshop

By on November 27, 2018

GAVIN MOREIRA, Member Services Manager for CMPA reports on the successful day recently held in the Geelong area for CMPA members.

On the 25th October 2018 the CMPA held a workshop to develop a Template / Guideline on Slimes Management. This will enable members to gain an understanding of how to manage slimes on site and water discharge off site, ensuring compliance with safety regulations.

The day commenced at the Mt Duneed Estate in Waurn Ponds with about 30 CMPA members and others in attendance.

The first presentation was made by David Western, Principal Hydrogeologist from ERR who spoke on Slimes Management from a Regulatory Perspective. This included the classification of waste storage in either small or large structures. Looking at the design and construction considerations, operation, decommissioning and rehabilitation of these structures.

David Western, ERR presenting during the Slimes Management Workshop

David Western, ERR presenting during the Slimes Management Workshop

Next up was Andrew Evans, Quarry Manager for Local Mix Quarries – Moriac who discussed Slimes Management from a Quarry Perspective. The presentation was a discussion on the development and planning of the Moriac Quarry.

With a site visit planned for the afternoon it enabled attendees to gain an understanding of how the production of washed sand is processed on the site, how slimes are handled, dump sites created, and remediation occurs before viewing the site for themselves.

After morning tea, the sponsor for the workshop Lincom Group made a presentation on Slimes Dewatering. This was conducted by Peter Godwin, Manager – Filtration and Dewatering. Discussions were had on how solids are to be handled and used, solutions looked at included various types of thickeners, belt press, centrifuges, filter presses or a combination of all.

Lincom Group sponsored the Slimes Management Workshop

Lincom Group sponsored the Slimes Management Workshop

Typical issues for slime cells and tailings dams are the occupation of surface area, slime cell maintenance, permit renewal, limited water recovery, too many truck movements and too much manual handling. Peter then went on to discuss the costs and environmental benefits of these different solutions.

Bruce Totton of Geofabrics Australasia then provided the group with an insight into Geotube Dewatering Technology giving the audience an understanding of alternative products on the market to creating a slimes dam.

A workers lunch brought opportunities to network with fellow members and to discuss what had been learned during the morning’s presentations.

After lunch the morning presenters were joined by Stewart Young (Consultant) to form a panel. David McKelvie from Safemix facilitated the questions and answers session which provided insightful discussions on various aspects of slimes management. Headings and topics were also noted to help provide information on the development of a template / guideline and a working group was formed to put the document together.

“Excellent cross section of experts and opinions, good venue and food.”

“Good to meet a good representation of industry in one room, which is rare.”

“There was robust discussion and knowledge sharing.”

Site Visit to Local Mix - Moriac Quarry

Site Visit to Local Mix – Moriac Quarry

A site visit by coach was held at Local Mix – Moriac Quarry to inspect the onsite safety aspects, in particular how slimes are managed. The group was also lucky enough to view the wash plant and water recycling equipment in full working order.

Thanks again to all presenters, Lincom Group for sponsoring the workshop and to Local Mix Quarries for allowing the group to visit the Moriac Quarry.

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About Gavin Moreira

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