Ecosphere and health conditions within the influence zone of a closed mine in Primorye

The article describes the long-term research data on ecosphere and health condition within the influence zone of closed Khrustalny Mining-and-Processing Plant in the Kavalerovo district in the Primorsky Krai (townships of Rudny and Fabrichny). Extensive production of tin in the last century resulted in accumulation of huge toxic processing waste in the tailings storages nearby the miners’ townships. It has been known for a long time from literature sources that such toxic waste adversely affects the biosphere and health of people. In the meanwhile, this problem remains yet to be studied in the region in question. In this regard, this study aims at the impact assessment of the natural-and-geotechnical system within the influence zone of the closed mining practice on the ecosphere and health in order to ensure social and environmental safety. The content of heavy metals and arsenic in tin ore processing waste and in soil was evaluated using atomic absorption spectrometry. The analysis of variance was performed to find correlations between the relative sickness rate and the ecosphere pollution level. It is found that the biosphere components have accumulated zinc, copper and lead compounds in quantities which exceed the background values by 2–6 to 29 times. The highest content of heavy metals is observed in soil at the pollution source; here, the total contamination index is 176. This situation is critical in terms of the environmental pollution. As a consequence, a considerable decline is witnessed in health of people, especially children as they are the most susceptible to pollutant exposure. The calculated correlation factors exceed the threshold values (rthreshold = 0.666) of sickness rates, for instance, rcalc = 0.766 in Fabrichny township and rcalc = 0.710 in Rudny township (respiratory deceases), which means considerable correlation in the given nosonomies. The research results prove the extremely high, even critical level of the environmental pollution in the study region. The tight correlation defined points at the ecologically governed sickness rate– pollution dependence. The provisions are developed toward reduction in the adverse effect of the manmade system on the environment and health of people in the study region.

Keywords: tailings storage, closed mine, mining waste, induced pollution, people health, social and biological safety.
For citation:

Rastanina N. K., Golubev D. A., Shavrin E. I. Ecosphere and health conditions within the influence zone of a closed mine in Primorye. MIAB. Mining Inf. Anal. Bull. 2021;(3):114-127. [In Russ]. DOI: 10.25018/0236-1493-2021-3-0-114-127.


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, Science Project Code 0818-2020-0004.

Issue number: 3
Year: 2021
Page number: 114-127
ISBN: 0236-1493
UDK: 504.61:622(571.63)
DOI: 10.25018/0236-1493-2021-3-0-114-127
Article receipt date: 30.01.2020
Date of review receipt: 13.07.2020
Date of the editorial board′s decision on the article′s publishing: 10.02.2021
About authors:

N.K. Rastanina1, Cand. Sci. (Biol.), Assistant Professor, e-mail:,
D.A. Golubev1,2, Cand. Sci. (Eng.), Senior Lecturer; Senior Researcher, Far Eastern Forestry Research Institute, 680020, Khabarovsk, Russia,
E.I. Shavrin1, Student,
1 Pacific National University, 680035, Khabarovsk, Russia.


For contacts:

N.K. Rastanina, e-mail:


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