Tailings dust emissions caused by the climate change: A case-study of a mine in Russia’s far north

The studies into relation between the warm season weather data and the intensity of dust emissions at apatite–nepheline ore milling tailings over a period of 2001–2019 show that the highest excess of dust emission standards is observed at the mean daily temperature of 10–15 °C, humidity of 60–80 % and the wind speed of 2–4 m/s. The latter figures mean that even short wind blasts in the area of tailings storage facilities are sufficient for the MAC value to be overrun. The most of excesses take place in case of north-westerly winds. The warm season weather data analysis shows that a considerable excess, more than by 2 °C, over the monthly mean temperature occurs in May. This is the cause of earlier loss of snow cover and longer duration of potential dusting of tailings ponds. In the summer months, except for June, and in September, a minor raise of monthly average temperature is recorded. The average wind speeds and humidity show no essential variation over this period. From the compared changes in humidity of tailings sampled within the same area, it follows that in 10–15 days after loss of snow cover, given no atmospheric fallout, the hazard of dusting appears even at the daily mean temperature under 5–8 °C. Under unfavorable weather conditions, it is advisable to carry out monitoring and snap sampling of air, direction and speed of winds, as well as temperature and humidity of air directly at a tailings pond.

Keywords: apatite–nepheline ore milling tailings, dust emissions, weather data, daily mean temperature of air, loss of snow cover, humidity, density, monitoring.
For citation:

Makarov D. V., Svetlov A. V., Goryachev A. A., Konina O. T., Masloboev V. A. Tailings dust emissions caused by the climate change: A case-study of a mine in Russia’s far north. MIAB. Mining Inf. Anal. Bull. 2021;(5):122-133. [In Russ]. DOI: 10.25018/0236_1493_ 2021_5_0_122.


The study was carried out within the framework of the Basic Research Program of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Research Issue No. 0226-2019-0047, and was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, Grant No. 18-05-60142 Arctic.

Issue number: 5
Year: 2021
Page number: 122-133
ISBN: 0236-1493
UDK: 622.17, 622.807.2, 551.506
DOI: 10.25018/0236_1493_2021_5_0_122
Article receipt date: 12.06.2020
Date of review receipt: 17.07.2020
Date of the editorial board′s decision on the article′s publishing: 10.04.2021
About authors:

D.V. Makarov1, Dr. Sci. (Eng.), Director,
A.V. Svetlov1, Cand. Sci. (Eng.), Researcher,
A.A. Goryachev1,2, Graduate Student, Junior Researcher,
O.T. Konina1, Graduate Student,
V.A. Masloboev1, Dr. Sci. (Eng.), Head Researcher, Scientific Supervisor, Senior Advisor,
1 Institute of Industrial Ecology Problems of the North, Kola Scientific Center, Russian Academy of Sciences, 184209, Apatity, Russia,
2 Kola Scientific Center, Russian Academy of Sciences, 184209, Apatity, Russia.


For contacts:

D.V. Makarov, e-mail: mdv_2008@mail.ru.


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