International network for acid prevention progress towards a global organization

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 98, No. 1087, 2005

R. Gallinger and B. Kelley

In 1997, a group of Canadian mining companies met to review the Mine Environment Neutral Drainage (MEND) program and to consider future activities. They concluded that Canadian industry and Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) should fund a small secretariat in Ottawa to support technology transfer in Canada, and that it was important for industry to continue the momentum of MEND on an international scale. The need for the International Network for Acid Prevention (INAP) was strongly endorsed by consultants, company, university, and government experts from Australia, Canada, and the United States. The initial focus was the development of a solid knowledge base covering the collective experience of INAP’s members to promote the dissemination of successful practices, the identification of knowledge gaps, and the formulation of effective research proposals. The sharing of information on past successes and failures alone was viewed as sufficient justification for the formation of INAP. What is INAP? The International Network for Acid Prevention was officially launched in October 1998 and is now an industry-based initiative that aims to globally coordinate research and development into the management of sulphide mine wastes. The principal objectives of INAP are to promote significant improvements in the management of sulphidic mine materials and the reduction of liability associated with acid drainage through knowledge sharing and research and development of technology. To meet these objectives INAP will: achieve a significant reduction in the liability associated with mine materials through information sharing, collaborative research, and implementation of best management practices through the complete mining business cycle; build credibility with key stakeholders through their engagement in the affairs of INAP and the collaborative development of a worldwide guide based on best management and technical practices as applied to acid prevention and control; and establish an organization with demonstrated structure and abilities to make long-term improvements in acid prevention and other environmental issues on the basis of global cooperation and action. How is INAP Organized? INAP members are mining companies who wish to work collaboratively to address acid drainage. INAP works via a board (made up of senior managers elected by the member companies) and a technical panel that coordinates the technical ideas and issues to ensure the topics important to industry are addressed. Currently, the Board of Directors is comprised of senior mining executives who are responsible for providing the leadership and support necessary for INAP to meet its objectives. The main activities of INAP are being directed by an Operating Committee appointed by the Board. The committee is comprised of several senior technical representatives from the member companies; its main responsibilities are to: ensure that the technical and communication needs of the members are identified and prioritized; establish panels and networks for specific technical issues in keeping with members’ interests; develop programs and projects to meet the technical and strategic communications objectives of INAP; foster the development of research ideas and proposals; and facilitate the approval and conduct of brokered research projects. The manager supports the Board and Operating Committee by maintaining information transfer systems, reporting, and administrative services. INAP members currently include BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Noranda Falconbridge, Phelps Dodge, Barrick, Inco, and Placer Dome. INAP also facilitates the ‘Global ARD Alliance’ which aims to maintain dialogue and share information with key regional ARD organizations. Current alliance partners include: Mine Environment Neutral Drainage (MEND) program (Canada); Acid Drainage Technology Initiative (United States); Australian Centre for Mine Extension and Research (Australia); and Partnership for Acid Drainage Remediation in Europe (United Kingdom). Program results, research initiatives, and workshops (old and new) can be found online at
Mots Clés: International Network for Acid Prevention,Waste management, Acid drainage.