Project Description

Decreasing the environmental impact caused by abandoned mines on water bodies.

Mining activities cause serious environmental damage to their surroundings, with considerable impacts on freshwater ecosystems. These impacts occur mainly through the discharge of polluted effluents, which may contain high concentrations of heavy metals or salts, depending on the type of mine. This environmental problem is especially critical for abandoned mines, because there is no company in charge of treating these mining effluents, leaving a legacy of local and global pollution. The main objective of LIFE DEMINE is to demonstrate the feasibility of decreasing the environmental impact caused by abandoned mining effluents in freshwater ecosystems, by adopting an innovative and versatile treatment process that will include existing and widely known technologies based on membranes and electrocoagulation, with the global aim of obtaining a non-polluting final effluent. After a first optimization at bench scale, pilot scale tests will be done in two abandoned mines located in UK and Germany.