OceanaGold shows gold mining can also be green

By Manila Times

July 12–MELBOURNE-based mining company OceanaGold has proven the gold extracted from its Didipio mine paved the way for the company to go fully green in its operation.

“Gold gives way to green,” David Way, OGPI general manager said, adding the company has been receiving awards for environmentally-friendly technologies in its operation, making people around its projects safe from harm.

OGPI operates the Didipio Gold and Copper Project in the mineral-rich village of Didipio in the upland town of Kasibu in Nueva Vizcaya province.

Way said that by applying the most appropriate combination of environmental control measures and strategies, OceanaGold received various trophies for ecology and environmental awards, including a series of awards for best corporate social responsibility practices.

“Our crowning achievement comes from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations [Asean] Mineral Awards. This is likened to the Oscars of the mining industry in the region where we were feted with the ‘Best Practice in Minerals Processing’ award,” Way said.

He said OGPI was one of only two Philippine mining companies during the Asean Mineral Awards in Myanmar to garner plums in a very competitive industry.

The awards with a board consisting of 10 judges from each Asean member-state recognized OceanaGold for its achievements in supporting an environmentally and socially sustainable mining sector.

“The awards were all due to our use of green production technology in cyanide and mercury-free mineral processing, tunnel paste backfill, and waste water management initiatives,” Way said.

One of OGPI’s more prominent green technologies used in the Didipio mine is the $6.1-million automated water treatment (AWT) facility. Jason Magdaong, OGPI environment manager, said that with the AWT, water recycling efficiency increased by up to 90 percent.

Magdaong also noted that the additional upgrades to the Didipio mine’s processing plant have drastically reduced reliance on freshwater, maintaining the health of aquatic environments.

In addition to the water treatment facility, the company also introduced an environmentally friendly backfilling method for its underground tunnel. In April 2017, the company concluded its open pit mining that started in 2013 and is shifting to underground mining.

He explained that the green technology paste backfill method will prevent ground subsidence or gradual caving in and sinking of an area and other related issues.

“Being green and responsible, the environment need not be harmed and even returned to a fertile, lush state if there is enough will and wherewithal to back it up,” Way said.

This article provided by NewsEdge.