Pulles Howard & De Lange
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Thabazimbi Iron Ore Mine Environmental Risk Assessment

A comprehensive screening level environmental risk assessment has been conducted at the Thabazimbi Iron Ore Mine. All operational and defunct aspects of the mine and its associated operations have been assessed in a qualitative manner in terms of all the different environmental media. Detailed action plans were identified to address all the significant risk issues and a user-friendly report format was developed which clearly motivates the risk assessment process to all readers. The process also includes consultations with various interested and affected parties.

Durban Navigation Colliery Environmental Risk Assessment

Durban Navigation Colliery (Durnacol) is currently in the process of planning its final closure. The primary challenge of decommissioning, mine closure and rehabilitation planning is the achievement of a balance between the needs of human health and safety, protection of the natural environment, and restoration of productive land use within a technically and financially achievable framework. A unique methodology has been developed at Durnacol which is currently being applied to other Iscor mines. PHD has been the major driving force in developing and implementing this risk-based approach at Durnacol. The approach has been discussed and approved by the various regulatory authorities as being most likely to ensure successful closure of the mine with no risk of unquantified long-term financial consequences.

Company-wide Environmental Risk Assessment

A confidential fast-track comprehensive environmental risk assessment was undertaken for a major South African listed industrial Client. A team of 11 experts was assembled who spent 2 months full-time assessing all the Clients operational sites. Detailed risk assessment reports were prepared, appropriate additional studies and remediation measures (with total costs exceeding R4 billion) were identified, defined, costed and prioritised. Workshops were held with each of the operational sites and with the executive management team.

Iscor Heavy Minerals Risk Assessment

PHD is currently undertaking two quantitative environmental risk assessments for Iscor Heavy Minerals. These risk assessments are fully quantitative and include all ecological and human receptors which may be of concern. All relevant environmental pathways: air, surface and groundwater are being considered. The projects include the design and implementation of detailed site monitoring programmes, transport modelling, risk and dose modelling, identification and spe4cification of appropriate risk minimisation measures and the development of detailed monitoring programmes. Where appropriate, detailed discussions are held with authorities and other relevant parties.

Sasol Transportation Risk Assessment

A transport risk assessment was undertaken for Sastech to identify the high risk areas on their major routes between Gauteng, Secunda, Sasolburg and Durban. Various data were collected, including pavement statistics, road accidents, hazchem incidents and route information such as sensitive areas, public or recreational areas and areas of high population density. The data was entered onto a Geographic Information System.

A transportation risk assessment of propionic and acetic acid on major routes for Sasol

A transportation risk assessment is being done on the major routes used by Sasol for the transportation of acetic acid and propionic acid. Existing Geographic Information System data, accident statistics and other data are being used.

Human health risk assessment of carcinogens in drinking water

A quantitative screening level risk assessment was undertaken for a confidential client on the risks to a whole community supplied by the Client with drinking water contaminated with a known carcinogen. Some deaths in the community had occurred and it was suspected that the carcinogen could have been responsible. This study involved the detailed assessment of complete water quality records, exposure data, medical records, etc and a quantitative probabilistic risk assessment was undertaken. Remediation and management measures were also identified.

Human health risk assessment of asbestos

Two phases of a study have been undertaken in evaluating the human health risks associated with various activities at an abandoned asbestos mine in South Africa. The abandoned mine has been intensively used for different human activities and the risks of these activities and appropriate remediation measures have been identified.

Human health risk assessment associated with contaminated gypsum

A screening level quantitative risk assessment has been undertaken for human receptors involved in the processing, handling and application of secondary products produced from contaminated gypsum. This report was then submitted for detailed critical review by the relevant regulatory authorities.

Human health and ecological risk assessment associated with new industrial technology

A detailed human health and ecological risk assessment is being conducted across all pathways (air, surface water, ground water) to evaluate the environmental risks associated with a confidential new industrial technology. The project quantifies the risk to the critical receptors and identifies engineering design and operational changes that can be implemented to reduce risk.