Off-road vehicles are driven on a property that will be mined for lithium along the Salton Sea, in Niland, Calif., in July 2021. Lithium is critical to rechargeable batteries.
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Canada could become a global leader in the supply of materials needed for renewable energy systems if it finds ways to control the environmental footprints associated with their extraction.
Methane is the world’s second most abundant greenhouse gas. It doesn’t stay in the atmosphere as long as CO2, but it’s many times more potent.
Photo by Don Bartletti/Los Angeles Times via Getty Image
The lead author of a new UN report on methane explains the findings and how oil and gas companies could be making money and saving the climate at the same time.
While people may be familiar with precious metals, which are often at the heart of conflicts, there are also metals that are essential to good health.
Iron fights anemia. Bismuth relieves gastric problems. Lithium acts against depression and gold can treat rheumatoid arthritis. Metals are precious tools for good health.
The eastern tributary in the Woronora drinking water catchment
In my 30 years of research, I keep uncovering long-standing environmental issues the mining industry doesn’t seem to learn from.
After 48 hours of frantic effort, Brazilian rescue workers have called off their search for survivors at a collapsed dam in Minas Gerais state.
AP Photo/Leo Correa
Nearly 1,800 Brazilian dams are at risk of failure, according to the government. Fixing them is expensive – but ignoring aging dams can have considerable social, economic and environmental costs.
Old mine sites suffer many fates, which range from simply being abandoned to being incorporated into towns or turned into an open-air museum in the case of Gwalia, Western Australia.
The industrial patterns of mining shaped many Australian towns, which found varied uses for disused mine sites. The mining boom ensures the challenges these sites present will be with us a long time.
In just a few years, Burkina Faso has become the fourth largest gold exporter in Africa. But with 43% of the population still below the poverty line, what are the local benefits?
Communities that live near mines are exposed to particles of dust from these mines which affects their health.
People living close to mine dumps are more inclined to show symptoms of asthma.
The legacy of the dirtiest of fuels – coal – has the potential to deliver a low carbon energy future.
The Hazelwood mine will fill with water once it’s closed.
AAP/Country Fire Authority
What do you do with a giant pit mine once it closes? One option for the Hazelwood mine is creating a recreational lake – but there are economic and environmental issues to consider.
Can you hear me now?
Mine communications are complex, slow and unreliable. The solution to keeping miners safe, and rescuing them when disaster strikes, might just be in their hands already.
Many of Australia’s mines haven’t been cleaned up as thoroughly as they should have been.
Rehabilitating old mines is a crucial responsibility for the industry. But many Australian mine sites have been simply left alone or left for the taxpayer to fix.
The urban landscape is complex and ever-changing in cities such as Perth, but digital aerial photography can now monitor even the smallest changes.
Constant, complex changes in cities and mine sites are hard to monitor. Drawing on digital aerial photography, it’s now possible to track land-use and vegetation changes in areas as small as 10-20cm.
Pregnant women in three Australian cities are not told that lead exposure during pregnancy is linked to miscarriage and early delivery.
Parents in three Australian states are being given misleading advice about the dangers of lead to babies and small children – including failing to warn pregnant women about miscarriage risks.
Could municipal biosolids be a trove of tiny treasure?
Heather Lowers, USGS Denver Microbeam Laboratory
Mining waste rock from historic mines or even treated sewage to find useful metals and minerals could be a sustainable way to meet demand for these finite resources.