Assessment of manmade air pollution due to dusting at mine tailings storage facilities

The article presents studies on the environmental impact of dust-producing mine tailings dumps within the influence zone of Dalnegorsk and Krasnorechensk ore clusters, Primorsky Krai, Russia. The studies were aimed to assess air pollution from dusting of mine tailings dumps with a view to improving their ecological safety. The study objectives included: (1) review and generalization of source literature on anmade pollution of eco-sphere due to dusting of tailings storages; (2) ecological situation assessment within the influence zones of Dalnegorsk and Krasnorechensk mine tailings storage facilities; (3) health risk assessment in the influence zones of the specified dumps. The structure diagram of the environmental impact of the tailings dumps is proposed. It is advisable to model air effect in the pollution gain during dusting of mine tailings dumps, which greatly depends on wind velocity. Modeling of dust dispersion from inorganic 70–20% SiO2, hazard class 1–3 heavy metals and arsenic inside the influence zones of  Dalnegorsk and Krasnorechensk tailings storage facilities was performed using unified air pollution analysis program Ekolog-4.6 for two scenarios: at constant wind velocity in 95% of cases (U*) and at yearly mean wind velocity at certain points of the influence zone of the tailings dumps, including the residential area. Inside the envelopes of intense air pollution, the sanitary standards are exceeded in term of inorganic dust containing 70–20% SiO2 and lead and its compounds within the influence zone of Krasnorechensk tailings storage facilities and in terms of dust of manganese and its compounds within the influence zone of Dalnegorsk tailings storage facilities. Within the zones of the maximum ground level concentrations in the residential area, the potential risk of non-specific toxic effects in chronic intoxication of people is calculated for the period of heavy impact due to the tailings dumps. The risk is categorized as high in terms of manganese and inorganic dust containing 70–20% SiO2 in Dalnegorsk ore cluster and in terms of inorganic dust in Krasnorechensk ore cluster. There is a positive upward tendency in non-specific pathology even in case of single events of specific pathology.

Keywords: tailings dumps, environmental impact, dusting, atmospheric air, modeling, dispersion, heavy metals, potential risk.
For citation:

Mayorova L. P., CherentsovaA. A., Krupskaya L. T., Golubev D. A., Kolobanov K. A. Assessment of manmade air pollution due to dusting at mine tailings storage facilities. MIAB. Mining Inf. Anal. Bull. 2021;(1):5-20. [In Russ]. DOI: 10.25018/0236-1493-2021-1-0-5-20.


The study was carried out under the state contract between the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation and the Pacific National University in the science sphere, Project Code 0818-2020-0004.

Issue number: 1
Year: 2021
Page number: 5-20
ISBN: 0236-1493
UDK: 502.56
DOI: 10.25018/0236-1493-2021-1-0-5-20
Article receipt date: 30.01.2020
Date of review receipt: 18.05.2020
Date of the editorial board′s decision on the article′s publishing: 10.12.2020
About authors:

L.P. Mayorova1, Dr. Sci. (Chem.), Assistant Professor, Head of Chair, e-mail:,
A.A. Cherentsova1, Cand. Sci. (Biol.), Assistant Professor,
L.T. Krupskaya1,2, Dr. Sci. (Biol.), Professor, Chief Researcher,
D.A. Golubev1,2, Cand. Sci. (Eng.), Senior Lecturer, Senior Researcher,
K.A. Kolobanov1,2, Graduate Student, Junior Researcher,
1 Pacific National University, 680035, Khabarovsk, Russia,
2 Far Eastern Research Institute of Forestry, 680020, Khabarovsk, Russia.


For contacts:

L.P. Mayorova, e-mail:


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