Optimizing water management at Gregg River Coal Mine

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 90, No. 1015, 1997

L.F. Sawatsky*, G. Beckstead, D. Long*, AGRA Earth & Environmental Limited, Calgary, Alberta and G. Gould and R. Nutbrown, Gregg River Resources Ltd., Hinton, Alberta

This paper presents a case study for optimizing water management at Gregg River Coal Mine located near Hinton, Alberta. The optimization study was derived based on a review and assessment of existing management practices and plans for future operation and final reclamation. A proactive water management strategy was developed to assist mine staff in adopting a rational, environmentally sound, and economical approach to water management. A plan was developed to provide for safe operation, self-sustaining operation, low maintenance, minimum negative environmental impacts, and anticipation of future needs for existing and future operations. A plan for final reclamation drainage was developed including establishment of effective, sustainable, and maintenance-free water management systems. The study demonstrated the importance and benefits of a proactive approach for integrated mine water management. This approach is recommended for other similar mine operations because it will improve environmental compliance and reduce costs of water management.