Principles and Standards for the ecological restoration of mine sites

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Renee Young, George D. Gann, Bethanie Walder, Junguo Liu, Wenhui Cui and Kingsley Dixon

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Mining companies are often required to return or transfer land impacted by their activities to government agencies, communities, or other landowners in a condition that is suitable for the next agreed upon land use to commence, generally in accordance with written regulatory agreements. In many cases this is the same general land use that was present prior to disturbance, and often consists of a native ecosystem. In these instances, ecological restoration approaches are required. The Mining Standards present a robust framework for delivering high-quality ecological restoration of mine sites. Such a framework enables acceptable and enduring environmental, social, and economic legacies for future generations consistent with many international goals and conventions. They highlight the role that mine site restoration has in connecting industry with social, community, and ecological productivity; as well as providing recommended performance measures. Adapted from SER’s International Principles & Standards for the Practice of Ecological Restoration, eight aspirational principles underpin ecological restoration in mining landscapes. In combination, these principles support decision-making to achieve the best environmental and social outcomes for a restored mine site by: • Engaging stakeholders throughout Life of Mine • Drawing on many kinds of knowledge, • Are informed by the native reference system, while considering environmental change • Supporting ecosystem recovery processes, • Are assessed by clear goals and objectives, using measurable indicators, • Seeking the highest level of recovery attainable, • Gaining cumulative value at large scales, and • Are a as part of a continuum of restorative activities.

Resource Type:
Conference Presentation, SER2021

Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program