Mining projects begin with a detailed exploration of an area of interest and geological data is collected and evaluated. Data can be used to determine the potential financial benefit of the project as well as how to proceed with mining operations. The Mount Polley breach is an example of how data could be misinterpreted or, if overlooked, lead to an environmental, safety, or financial disaster. Gain greater control over your data to protect mining projects and the community with a robust enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution.
Data can lead to great successes or great failures. As suggested in “Mount Polley: expert says misinterpreted test results led to massive breach,” posted by CBC News on cbc.ca, overlooked data led to environmental disaster. Initial investigations indicate that the tailings facility for the Mount Polley Mine was built atop glacial till. Over time, as the tailings pond grew larger increasing the load on the dam, the foundation failed and released contaminated water into Polley Lake, Hazeltine Creek, and Quesnel Lake. Initial engineers performed soil borings but concluded the deposit was “spotty” and “would not adversely affect the dam stability.” After the breach an investigation led to additional questions about the testing and the resulting data that used to engineer the tailings facility. Was it enough data, was data overlooked, or outright dismissed? The government has requested testing at all active and inactive mines in the province and independent review of the annual dam safety reports. The concern is that there could be other tailings ponds built on glacial deposits that could lead to similar failures.
Mining projects are often large in size and involve vendors and experts from many areas of discipline. Data collected from drilling, soil analysis, and geologic investigation needs to be carefully collected and analyzed during the exploration and assessment phases. These activities, in addition to building relationships with the local governmental agencies and communities, generate data that project managers need to make prudent decisions in a timely manner. An integrated ERP solution can support your efforts to collect and analyze data quickly and efficiently. Contact Caron Business Solutions to learn more about using ERP to get closer to the data needed to make strategic business decisions and operate successful mining operations.
By Caron Business Solutions, Trusted Provider of Sage ERP and CRM Solutions in British Columbia