Developing digital tools for management of mine closure reducing environmental impact of mining

Mining projects are unique industrial undertakings due to their inherently limited life time.

Mine closure process is crucial for the European mining industry. Operating in a densely populated region requires environmental excellence from all mining projects. Mine closure and the post closure period are key for reducing the environmental impact of mining. Post closure period provides a wealth of opportunities for sustainable regional benefits from mining, if the closure is planned and managed properly.

Mine closure is a long, continuous process that starts already in the planning phase of the mining project. Progressive mine closure with continuous reduction of risks and uncertainties is the modern industry standard for best closure outcomes. It presents a major management challenge due to its complexity, uncertainties, and the multitude of internal and external stakeholders involved. It also involves considerable financial liabilities. In most cases, official closure plans are required by the mining and environmental authorities.

The complexity and long-term nature of mine closure make static mine closure management plans (CMP) poorly suited for the current practice of progressive mine closure. There is a need for digital management tools that help in planning, executing, monitoring, and communicating the process and managing the closure-related data and documents.

Therefore, EIT RawMaterials partners: GTK, BRGM, DMT together with M-Solutions and Hannukainen Mining received funding for the new innovation project to develop digital tools for the mine closure process and its management.

This three-year project called Closurematic launched in early February 2018 in Kuopio, Finland will improve mine closure through digitalisation. The project will create a system with templates and guidance for drafting mine closure plans for all phases of the mining operation, context sensitive technical support for closure issues, features for accumulation and management of data, and tools for monitoring and managing the closure process.

The project is coordinated by the Geological Survey of Finland (GTK). The other partners are French Geological Survey (BRGM), DMT consulting group (a division of TÜV Nord Group), M-Solutions, and Hannukainen Mining Oy.

For more information, please contact:

GTK: Lauri Solismaa

BRGM: Gaël Bellenfant

DMT: Philip Mittelstädt

M-Solutions: Janne Montonen

Hannukainen Mining: Jaana Koivumaa