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[ABANDONED] Isolation of Toxic Mine Tailings

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South Reinkalistan
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[ABANDONED] Isolation of Toxic Mine Tailings

Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 02, 2020 3:47 am

OOC: Hey! This is my first draft submission to the General Assembly, so apologies if I make any beginner's mistakes!

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"The People's Federation has observed that there is a need to enact legislation on the treatment of toxic mine tailings for the betterment of the natural environment. After much debate in the People's Congress, it was determined that the following draft would be submitted for discussion in the General Assembly. For any queries and criticisms, Ambassador Lakersk Turnov is instructed to represent South Reinkalistan in the World Assembly. Please take them up with him."

Isolation of Toxic Mine Tailings
Category: Environmental | Industry Affected: Mining | Proposed by: South Reinkalistan

The World Assembly,

Noting that certain mine tailings undergo processes that can render them toxic or otherwise harmful;

Recognising that this warrants a necessity to isolate these tailings sufficiently from the natural environment;

Asserting that all threats to the natural environment must therefore be countered to ensure global prosperity;

Understanding that toxic mine tailings must therefore be isolated to prevent their detriment to such factors;

Hereby,

  1. Defines, for the purposes of this resolution:

    1. "Mine Tailings" (herein "Tailings") as "the waste product remaining following the separation of the valuable fraction of an ore from its uneconomic fraction";

    2. "Isolated" as "removed or otherwise separated from any location in which it possesses a proven capacity to act in detriment to the natural environment";

    3. Any "harmful" substance as "possessing a proven capacity to act in significant detriment to the natural environment";
  2. Mandates that all harmful tailings must be sufficiently isolated;

  3. Establishes the Commission for Mine Tailing Isolation (herein "CMTI") for the purposes of properly and thoroughly inspecting the disposal of tailings in national territories;

  4. Instructs the CMTI to aid and assist nationalised mining institutions and private contractors as an advisory body for the safe and secure isolation of dangerous or toxic tailings;

    1. Mining institutions and private contractors are charged with heeding the advice of the CMTI wherever possible;
  5. Requires all national governments to undertake inspection of private mining contractors to ensure that they are compliant with this resolution; and

  6. Further requires national governments to ensure that these regulations are followed to the best of their abilities.
Last edited by South Reinkalistan on Wed Apr 29, 2020 4:32 am, edited 7 times in total.
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Postby Tinhampton » Thu Apr 02, 2020 3:57 am

Please tag your draft threads as [DRAFT]s. Why is the CMTI unable to support privately-owned mining institutions in isolating mine tailings?
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South Reinkalistan
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Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 02, 2020 3:58 am

Tinhampton wrote:Please tag your draft threads as [DRAFT]s. Why is the CMTI unable to support privately-owned mining institutions in isolating mine tailings?

Hmm, that's a good point. Will add!
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Postby The New Nordic Union » Thu Apr 02, 2020 4:59 am

'The proposal starts with definitions, but fails to define what exactly constitutes dangerous tailings. One would suppose that every piece of mine tailings might be dangerous in some way, and be it by fallin onto someone's head.'
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South Reinkalistan
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Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 02, 2020 5:11 am

The New Nordic Union wrote:'The proposal starts with definitions, but fails to define what exactly constitutes dangerous tailings. One would suppose that every piece of mine tailings might be dangerous in some way, and be it by fallin onto someone's head.'

"Do correct me if I am wrong, sir, but I find that most - if not all - tailings could be considered dangerous or toxic to the environment; that was merely added to the draft as a descriptor or perhaps specification. If it is unsuitable, please do say."
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Thu Apr 02, 2020 5:41 am

I'll note on formatting: semicolons, penultimate 'and's need adding. Why, however, is this an international issue?

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Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 02, 2020 5:52 am

Imperium Anglorum wrote:I'll note on formatting: semicolons, penultimate 'and's need adding. Why, however, is this an international issue?

"I'll add the suggested formatting changes. I would say, though, that this is most definitely an international issue. The environment in nations - worldwide - suffers as a result of tailings, and as such international legislation should be drafted to ensure that the damage to the environment is minimised."
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Thu Apr 02, 2020 5:52 am

Warrant?

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Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 02, 2020 5:53 am

Imperium Anglorum wrote:Warrant?

"Could you please elaborate, sir?"
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Postby Imperium Anglorum » Thu Apr 02, 2020 6:23 am

Do you have a warrant for why

The environment in nations - worldwide - suffers as a result of tailings, and as such international legislation should be drafted to ensure that the damage to the environment is minimised.

is true?

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South Reinkalistan
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Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 02, 2020 6:48 am

Imperium Anglorum wrote:Do you have a warrant for why

The environment in nations - worldwide - suffers as a result of tailings, and as such international legislation should be drafted to ensure that the damage to the environment is minimised.

is true?

Tailings are usually toxic because, as outlined in my preamble, the processing for the valuable fraction of an ore to be separated generally causes tailings to be toxic by their very nature. It can become so toxic that they warrant isolation from the natural environment. This legislation would mandate that all states isolate toxic tailings, as mine tailings are generally considered to be a major environmental issue.
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TURANISKIDAK HERALD: Tupeian slavers beware: Red Fleet sets off to join blockade! || New labour lottery for May - attend your local employment centre now. || Imperialist-incited nuclear reactor meltdown prevented heroically by bold technicians of the People's Federation. || Octavian forces sent an ultimatum by Comrade Turaniski.
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Frisbeeteria
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Postby Frisbeeteria » Thu Apr 02, 2020 9:02 am

South Reinkalistan wrote:the processing for the valuable fraction of an ore to be separated generally causes tailings to be toxic by their very nature.

While you are somewhat correct, you need to explain that in the resolution. If you're crushing rock to make gravel, the 'tailings' are actually the product for sale. If you're mining for gold, the cyanide used to extract the tiny amount of gold is incredibly toxic. A one-size-fits-all solution like this one doesn't work.

Explain yourself, or abandon the proposal.

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Sancta Romana Ecclesia
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Postby Sancta Romana Ecclesia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 9:12 am

This is a good idea, I think.
Frisbeeteria wrote:
South Reinkalistan wrote:the processing for the valuable fraction of an ore to be separated generally causes tailings to be toxic by their very nature.

While you are somewhat correct, you need to explain that in the resolution. If you're crushing rock to make gravel, the 'tailings' are actually the product for sale

In which case it isn't "a waste product remaining following the separation of the valuable fraction of an ore from its uneconomic fraction", gravel thus produced has an economic use for the producer. In other words, that doesn't appear to be covered by the proposal now.
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Postby The New Sicilian State » Thu Apr 02, 2020 9:13 am

"Suggestion, perhaps change the operative clause of the last two clauses to 'requires' rather than 'instructs'. It ensures that member states truly attempt to fulfill these requirements to the best of their ability."

Imperium Anglorum wrote:Warrant?


OOC: Some byproducts are strictly toxic, such as cyanide from gold, but as a general sort of thing, a UN report described instances in which small byproduct particles tend to suspend themselves in water. It could (possibly) contaminate the water supply. In RL, some companies use dams to hold these tailings, but it's not always... perfect.

EDIT: Just saw Fris's post, didn't mean to seem redundant.
Last edited by The New Sicilian State on Thu Apr 02, 2020 9:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Sancta Romana Ecclesia » Thu Apr 02, 2020 10:33 am

The New Sicilian State wrote:"Suggestion, perhaps change the operative clause of the last two clauses to 'requires' rather than 'instructs'. It ensures that member states truly attempt to fulfill these requirements to the best of their ability."

Agreed.
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South Reinkalistan
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Postby South Reinkalistan » Fri Apr 03, 2020 1:31 am

Thank you all for the feedback! Draft updated to account for all (I think?) points made thus far.
Last edited by South Reinkalistan on Fri Apr 03, 2020 1:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Araraukar » Mon Apr 06, 2020 1:31 am

South Reinkalistan wrote:Any "harmful" substance as "possessing a proven capacity to act in significant detriment to the natural environment";

Mandates that all tailings considered to be harmful must be sufficiently isolated;

OOC: Too tired to make proper comments right now, but the underlined bits are kinda disagreeing with one another. If something has to have a proven capacity to be significantly detrimental to the environment to be defined as harmful, it's not "considered" to be harmful: it's proven to be harmful.

Though that creates a great loophole for nations not wanting to comply with this: simply don't test any tailings and so they can't be proven to be harmful and thus this proposal doesn't come into play.

Just typoed "harmful" five different ways before getting it right. Clearly bedtime for me.
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Postby Kenmoria » Mon Apr 06, 2020 11:52 am

“In the interest of not adding to the already-sizeable bureaucracy of the General Assembly, would it be possible to add to the duties of a previous committee, rather than creating a new one?” However, this is only a minor concern, and it might be that there isn’t any committee that fits, in which case there isn’t an issue.”

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South Reinkalistan
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Postby South Reinkalistan » Thu Apr 09, 2020 5:39 am

Araraukar wrote:
South Reinkalistan wrote:Any "harmful" substance as "possessing a proven capacity to act in significant detriment to the natural environment";

Mandates that all tailings considered to be harmful must be sufficiently isolated;

OOC: Too tired to make proper comments right now, but the underlined bits are kinda disagreeing with one another. If something has to have a proven capacity to be significantly detrimental to the environment to be defined as harmful, it's not "considered" to be harmful: it's proven to be harmful.

Though that creates a great loophole for nations not wanting to comply with this: simply don't test any tailings and so they can't be proven to be harmful and thus this proposal doesn't come into play.

Just typoed "harmful" five different ways before getting it right. Clearly bedtime for me.

OOC: Fixed. I think that "proven" would go by international rather than national standards in this case, as per good faith interpretation. Do correct me if I'm wrong.
Kenmoria wrote:“In the interest of not adding to the already-sizeable bureaucracy of the General Assembly, would it be possible to add to the duties of a previous committee, rather than creating a new one?” However, this is only a minor concern, and it might be that there isn’t any committee that fits, in which case there isn’t an issue.”

(OOC: There is a list of committees here.)

"I am not sure any of these committees would be particularly suited to the admittedly unique topic; do correct me if I'm wrong. However, my dispositions do not put me in a position to delve into these committees thoroughly as of this moment; I shall however have an in-depth look later."
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Grimdark pseudo-cyberpunk totalitarian PMT theocratic socialist hellscape, perpetually at war with itself and others.
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TURANISKIDAK HERALD: Tupeian slavers beware: Red Fleet sets off to join blockade! || New labour lottery for May - attend your local employment centre now. || Imperialist-incited nuclear reactor meltdown prevented heroically by bold technicians of the People's Federation. || Octavian forces sent an ultimatum by Comrade Turaniski.
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Bhang Bhang Duc
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Postby Bhang Bhang Duc » Thu Apr 09, 2020 1:03 pm

OOC: I don’t often post in the GA, but this draft caught my eye. While my main experience is in primary metals extraction I’ve visited enough mines over the last 40 years to know what tailings are.

They are, specifically, a slurry containing fine particles of gangue material left over after the final processing of an ore. The particles range in size from grains of sand down to a few micrometres.

So while there are other waste products produced during the mining of an ore body, they are not tailings. That term refers to a very specific type of waste.

Generally those tailings are not nice. For example 80% of the world’s copper is produced from copper sulphide orebodies. That copper sulphide is entrained with other sulphide minerals. These report to the tailings after the mineral has been processed and the copper rich material removed. Typically minerals such as iron pyrites and arsenopyrite are found in the tailings, hence the need to control and contain the waste.
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