BHP Wants to Raise Olympic Dam’s Tailings Storage Capacity

Copper Company News Return to Copper Company News Directory BHP Wants to Raise Olympic Dam’s Tailings Storage Capacity Monday January 12, 2015, 9:40am PST

Mining Weekly reported that BHP Billiton Ltd. (ASX:BHP,LSE:BLT,NYSE:BHP) has applied for permission to raise the capacity of the tailings storage facility at its Australia-based Olympic Dam copper-gold-uranium mine.

As quoted in the market news:

In documents submitted to the federal government, BHP requested to increase the current design height of one of its radioactive storage ponds from 30 m above ground level, to 40 m above ground level.

At current production rates, the storage facility was expected to reach its design capacity in December 2017. However, by increasing the capacity of the storage facility, the miner was hoping to extend the life of the facility by five years, and to avoid the construction of an entirely new facility.

BHP said that raising the embankment height of the existing facility would not result in increased seepage rates, nor would it increase worker or public radiation exposure from the Olympic Dam tailings.

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