Tailings Working Group

The Tailings Working Group (WG) will work on tailings management and related social engagement, in collaboration with the Water Management WG in 2021. The information and ideas below includes a potential sequence of inter-connected efforts that support the ESRS stated goals:

· Lana Eagle and Diana Sollner will present a workshop series during February and March, on "Developing Relationships in Tailings Management." This series will do a deeper dive into what “building the relationship” means. It will strive to provide a framework on how to build relationships, how to engage meaningfully, and, how to incorporate western science with traditional knowledge and how it intersects with tailings risk. The series will facilitate a two-way conversation between community and industry partners, presenting case examples as well as a panel discussion on how to build relationships with communities that facilitates the social license to operate a tailings facility. This series will commence with a free webinar on February 18th to introduce the topic, followed by three sessions (paid registration) to be held March 23, 24, 25. See the ESRS newsletter for registration details.

· A focus on the application of remote monitoring to tailings management has been suggested to address the challenges and practicalities of selecting and applying the myriad technological offerings that still need effective interpretation and considerable judgment to be of real use. This could be an extended webinar by one or more panelists, before or after the annual CIM conference in April. It is interesting that one company claims that it detected changes prior to the Brumadinho dam failure.

· Last year's conference saw a number of proposed abstracts regarding dewatered tailings (i.e. technology types/methods) and several operating aspects related to this alternative (transport, placement, stability, etc.). As none of these were presented last year, we could look at bringing various presenters together for a session, and include an element on holistic decision making.

· A specific workshop series on the water management & processing aspects/challenges is being worked on by the Water Management WG. We would appreciate your views and suggestions on topics and potential speakers for this aspect to complement the emphasis that we have given this past year to tailings management.

· Various technical paper abstracts have been submitted in response to CIM’s call for papers for the 2021 Annual Conference. We may also opt to pull a couple of these into the above workshops, or webinars, so they gain more focused attention.

We see these activities as valuable for this year, and yet recognize how busy everyone is. We seek your input on these suggestions, and any others you have in mind, regarding content, good presenters and/or examples and scheduling, and prioritization.

We’ll convene a meeting of all those interested in helping, so as to spread the load. It’s also important that we continue to reference and support other endeavours going on in parallel, and in particular the roll-out of the Global Tailings Standard.

We would appreciate your feedback and of course all your efforts last year and ongoing to lead the industry in your various capacities. This is extremely valuable to CIM members.

For more information please contact Alistair Kent (alistair.kent@cementation.com)