By Silas Lilo
Gold Ridge Tailing Dam To Be Discharged Into River Purified
Australian Solomon Gold (ASG) Limited has announced that it will purify water from the current tailings dam before discharging it into the Tinahulu River.
Speaking to the media team visiting Gold Ridge on Friday, Mining Manager Mr Tom Michalak said the company put is implementing its proposed plan using a water purification machine to purify the contaminated water before discharging it.
He said the tailing lake was constructed by the Ross Mining Company during their mining operation in 1998 to 2000. This was aimed for the storage of the solid wastes from the gold mining process.
But as years went by the dam accumulated an ernemous ammount of rainwater estimated to be around 3,000 mega tonnes.
He said a proposal to dump the wastes from the dam directly into the river was opposed by tribal landowners.
"Not only was it opposed by landowner but also the health and environment authorities on the aspect by which it would damage the environment", he said
However on this matter the company looked for a possible alternative way in combating the situation. As such as the company come up with possible solution aiming to purify the contaminated water from the dam into pure water before it will be pumped into the river, he said.
"Basically the process that we would be embark on in processing the water it would produced top quality pure water which has more quality than water from the river", he said
He said the company has strong mechanisms in building up relationship with landowners and the Government of Solomon Islands, therefore the company purchase the machine and equipment to refine the contaminated water into pure water.
It cost the company SBD$7 million to pay for the machine and equipment, Mr Michalak said.
He said this process would take up to six months before the actual mining operations started because it was the company main intention to empty the tailings dam up.
He said the company take strong measure in implementing this project.
"This was to show that the company has a concern over environment and the community and also to have a trust relationship with landowners and the Government".
"Not only that, by this the company can be allowed more opening to pursue its interests" He said.
He said the company was committed to follow any option of instructions which the Solomon Islands Government and landowners proposed to be implemented by them in their operation.
The tailings dam was not the only project which the company would fund; this was the beginning he said.