What will make mining greener?
Mining has not always had a very enviable reputation in terms of the environment and sustainability, and the Green Mining concept has been developed to give much greater emphasis to methods that make better use of resources and take ecological and social issues into account more effectively. The overall goal is to improve energy and materials efficiency throughout the mineral production chain.
Make better use of mining-related waste and by-products is central to the Green Mining concept and getting to grips with the true implications of the fact that mineral resources are non-renewable. Higher living standards around the world are seeing a rapid increase in the use of minerals and metals, and while the recycling of end-products is improving all the time, recycling alone is insufficient.
Minimising environmental and social impact affecting communities across the production chain is a Green Mining priority, together with the development of new and better working methods and safety standards at mine sites, and a more proactive approach when ore deposits are exhausted and mining ends.
The Geological Survey of Finland
Established in 1885, the Geological Survey of Finland (GTK) serves as Finland’s national geoscientific information centre and acts as a European centre of excellence in research on mineral resources and related sustainability, producing and disseminating a wide range of geological information for industry and society.
The minerals sector is GTK’s most important customer segment, and GTK’s offering include geodata and expertise in Fennoscandian geology, customised exploration services, mineral processing, and GIS laboratory services.
GTK is actively involved in numerous R&D projects in Finland and elsewhere, and was selected to lead the European Promine project, a four-year long initiative launched in 2009 that currently includes 30 partners from 11 EU member states.
Promine has been tasked with developing the first-ever, pan-European GIS-based resources and modelling system for all potential metallic and nonmetallic mineral resources within the EU. Detailed 4D computer models will be produced for four regions across Europe.
The Promine project is also focusing on developing various new products and operating methods.