Utilisation of mineral waste: case studies. (Report No. CR/02/227N)


The 'Minerals from Waste' project aims to improve the sustainability of current and former mining and quarrying communities by investigating the utilisation of mineral waste as a source of construction and industrial minerals. The work was carried out under the Department for International Development Knowledge and Research programme, as part of the British Government's programme of aid to developing countries. The project was undertaken in collaboration with key organisations in Costa Rica and Namibia, who provided field guidance and local support.

A Scoping Study Report (Harrison and others, 2001) provided an overview of the types of waste found in extractive operations and the general economic, environmental and social issues involved in mine waste utilisation. This initial phase of research showed that opportunities exist for the production of saleable mineral products from mine waste.

This report presents the results of three case studies of mineral wastes from mines and quarries in Costa Rica and Namibia. Each case study includes:

Investigations of the technical properties of the waste

Mineral product evaluations

Market and economic appraisals

Social impact assessments of local communities

The objective of the research has been to develop a waste utilisation methodology which is generic and applicable to developing countries world-wide.

The case studies are based on, and illustrate the project's waste utilisation methodology covering technical, market, financial, environmental and social issues. The principles, strategies and procedures of this methodology are applicable to mine and quarry waste utilisation schemes in other regions and countries. Overall, the results presented in this report are aimed to be of benefit not only to mine and quarry engineers and geologists, but also to planners, social scientists, environmentalists, financiers and all involved in the management of mine waste.

Report available as Full colour version (11011kb). Black and white version (10116kb).


Utilisation of mineral waste: case studies. (Report No. CR/02/227N)

Published 1 January 2002