Progress toward Pollution Prevention and Waste Minimization in the North American Gold Mining Industry
Gavin Hilson, Barbara Murck 2001 Journal of Cleaner Production v9 p405-415
This paper addresses the two most environmentally problematic areas in the gold mine industry, which are the use of cyanide and acid mine drainage. The authors outline the environmental options available, the progress made towards pollution prevention, and areas in need of further improvement. The paper points out that most of the gold mines operated by the larger mining companies have implemented the state-of-the-art measures that help to prevent environmental problems; but that the small- and medium- sized companies are only doing what is necessary to comply with environmental regulations. It is concluded that the North American gold mining industry should form research partnerships with governments and academic institutions in order to explore new environmental aspects of the industry, in particular, biological oxidation.