Assessment of environmental hazard of accumulated mineral processing waste of closed mining enterprises in the Amur river region and Primorye

Full Text:


The subject of research was technogenic waste systems formed in the last century due to the activities
of presently closed mining enterprises in the Amur River Region and Primorye of the Far Eastern Federal District of the Russian Federation. Experimental studies allowed to establish that toxic sulphidized mineral processing waste accumulated for the 20th century in tailings storage facilities (TSF) in large quantities produce negative impact on the environment. It was revealed that their conservation and reclamation were not carried out. However, they pose huge threat not only to the environment, but also to public health. In this regard, the research goal was to assess environmental hazard of the accumulated toxic waste and substantiate the possibility of mitigating their negative impact on biosphere components and human health. Based on the research goal, the following tasks were set: 1) analysis and generalization of the existing experience of studying the problem in Russia and abroad; 2) identification of the main sources of crisis situations at closed mining enterprises, indicators and criteria for as sessing the environmental hazard of the accumulated mineral processing waste; 3) assessment of the environmental hazard of the accumulated mineral processing waste; 4) development of principles and measures aimed at ensuring environmental safety of TSF comprising toxic waste. The following methods were used: physical-chemical, bio logical, as well as mathematical modeling, GIS technologies, etc.Based on the study of the TSF current state, assessment of the level of technogenic environment pollution, and patent search, the authors substantiate the need for effective solution to this problem. It was found that the waste belongs to the second hazard class (highly hazardous). The excess of 4 to 46 times above the regional background indicators (metal concentrations), and more than 200 times above MPC was revealed. It has been proven that the TSF surface does not naturally run wild for 30 years. Patent search and our own experimental research allowed developing measures to ensure environmental safety of sulfidized tin ore processing waste, novelty of which was confirmed by patents of the Russian Federation.

About the Authors

L. T. Krupskaya
Far Eastern Scientific Research Institute of Forestry; Pacific State University
Russian Federation

A. M. Orlov
Far Eastern Scientific Research Institute of Forestry
Russian Federation

D. A. Golubev
Far Eastern Scientific Research Institute of Forestry; Pacific State University
Russian Federation

K. A. Kolobanov
Far Eastern Scientific Research Institute of Forestry; Pacific State University
Russian Federation

M. A. Filatova
Far Eastern Scientific Research Institute of Forestry; Pacific State University
Russian Federation


1. Svinoboeva O.N., Nogovitsyn R.R. Prospects for revival of tin industry in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia). Problemy sovremennoy ekonomiki [Problems of modern economics]. 2017;3(63):183-186. (In Russ.)

2. Kulikova E. Yu., Sergeeva Yu. A. Conceptual model for minimizing the risk of water pollution in the Kemerovo region. Mining information and analytical bulletin (scientific and technical journal). 2020;6(1):107-118. (In Russ.)

3. Pinaev V.E., Chernyshev D.A. Elimination of accumulated environmental damage – organizational and legal aspects. Monograph, Moscow: Mir Nauki Publ.; 2017. 136 p. (In Russ.)

4. Order of the Government of the Russian Federation of November 17, 2008 No. 1662-r (as amended on September 28, 2018) "On the Concept of long-term socio-economic development of the Russian Federation for the period up to 2020" (together with the "Concept of long-term socio-economic development of the Russian Federation for the period up to 2020"). Available from: (In Russ.)

5. Gegiev K. A., Sherkhov A. Kh., Gergokov Z. Zh., Anakhaev K. K. Ecological problems of Tyrnyauz tailings storage facility near the Gizhgit River. Vestnik MGSU [Bulletin of MSBU]. 2018;13(11):1386-1394. DOI: 10.22227/1997-0935.2018.11.1386-1394 (In Russ.)

6. Ivanova O. A., Kuklina T. S. Environmental consequences of mining tungsten ores (as examplified by Zakamensk district of the Republic of Buryatia). Izvestiya Sibirskogo otdeleniya Sektsii nauk o Zemle RAEN [Bulletin of the Siberian Branch of the Section of Earth Sciences of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences]. 2016;3(56):95-101. (In Russ.)

7. Pashkevich M.A., Strizhenok A.V. Assessment of the anthropogenic load in the vicinity of the apatite-nepheline ore processing tailings storage facility. Izvestiya Tul'skogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Nauki o Zemle [Bulletin of Tula State University. Earth Sciences]. 2012;(2):35-41. (In Russ.)

8. Gurbanov A. G., Bogatikov O. A., Gazeev V. M., Leksin A. B., et al. Geochemical evaluation of environmental conditions in the area of activity of the tyrnyauz tungsten–molybdenum plant (Kabardino-Balkaria, North Caucasus): sources of environment contamination, impact upon neighboring areas, and ways for recovery. Doklady Earth Sciences. 2015;464(1):967-971.

9. Vinokurov S. F., Gurbanov A. G., Bogatikov O. A., Gazeev V. M., et al. Contents, seasonal variations, and forms of migration of major and minor elements in surface waters in the area of the Tyrnyauz Tungsten–Molybdenum combine (TTMC) and adjacent areas (Kabardino-Balkarian republic, Russian Federation) and actions for recovery of the ecological environment. Doklady Earth Sciences. 2016.;467(2):346-349.

10. Chigoeva D. N., Kamanin I. Z., Kaplina S. P. Contents of heavy metals in watercourses in the area of Unalsky TSF and Ardon river. South of Russia: ecology, development. 2018;13(2):113-122. DOI: 10.18470/1992-1098-2018-2-113-122 (In Russ.)

11. Kachor O. L., Sarapulova G. I., Bogdanov A. V. Selection of method for detoxication of man-made mining waste, polluted with arsenic. Latest research in modern science: experience, traditions, innovations. In: Proceedings of the IX International Scientific Conference. 2019. P. 14-17. (In Russ.)

12. Salas-Luévano M. A., Mauricio-Castillo J. A., González-Rivera M. L., et al. Accumulation and phytostabilization of As, Pb and Cd in plants growing inside mine tailings reforested in Zacatecas, Mexico. Environ Earth Sci, 2017;76:806. DOI: 10.1007/s12665-017-7139-y

13. Soltani N., Keshavarzi B., Moore F., et al. Distribution of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in tailings, soils, and plants around Gol-E-Gohar iron mine, a case study in Iran. Environ Sci Pollut Res. 2017;24:18798-18816. DOI: 10.1007/s11356-017-9342-5

14. Azharia Abdellah El, Rhoujjatia Ali, El Hachimi Moulay Laârabi, Ambrosi Jean-paul. Pollution and ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in the soil-plant system and the sediment-water column around a former Pb/Zn-mining area in NE Morocco. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. 2017;144:464-474. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoenv.2017.06.051

15. Romero Antonio, González Isabel, Martín José María, Vázquez María Auxiliadora, Ortiz Pilar. Risk assessment of particle dispersion and trace element contamination from mine-waste dumps. Environmental Geochemistry and Health. 2015;37:273-286. DOI: 10.1007/s10653-014-9645-0

16. May I. V., Kleyn S. V., Vekovshinina S. A. Assessment of impact of accumulated environmental damage to the quality of soil, surface and groundwater, agricultural products resulted from the mining enterprise. In: IOP Conf. Ser.: Earth Environ. Sci. International scientific conference «Agritech-2019: agribusiness, environmental engineering and biotechnologies». Krasnoyarsk; 2019. P. 062024.

17. Zhigang Hu, Chensheng Wang, Keqing Li & Xinyou Zhu. Distribution characteristics and pollution assessment of soil heavy metals over a typical nonferrous metal mine area in Chifeng, Inner Mongolia, China. Environmental Earth Sciences 2018;77:638.

18. Sung-Min Kim, Jangwon Suh, Sungchan Oh, Jin Son, Chang-Uk Hyun, Hyeong-Dong Park, Seung-Han Shin, Yosoon Choi. Assessing and prioritizing environmental hazards associated with abandoned mines in Gangwondo, South Korea: the Total Mine Hazards Index. Environmental Earth Sciences. 2016;75(5):369.

19. Rosario García-Giménez & Raimundo Jiménez-Ballesta. Mine tailings influencing soil contamination by potentially toxic elements. Environmental Earth Sciences. 2017;76:51. DOI: 10.1007/s12665-016-6376-9

20. Gbadebo A. M. & Ekwue Y. A. Heavy metal contamination in tailings and rocksamples from an abandoned goldminein southwestern Nigeria. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 2014;186:165-174.

21. Peña-Ortega Mayra, Del Rio-Salas Rafael, Valencia-Sauceda Javier, Mendívil-Quijada Héctor, MinjarezOsorio Christian, Molina-Freaner Francisco, de la O-Villanueva Margarita & Moreno-Rodríguez Verónica. Environmental assessment and historic erosion calculation of abandoned mine tailings from a semi-arid zone of northwestern Mexico: insights from geochemistry and unmanned aerial vehicles. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. 2019;26:26203-26215.

22. García-Lorenzo Mari Luz, Crespo-Feo Elena, Esbrí Jose María, Higueras Pablo, Grau Patricia, Crespo Isabel, Sánchez-Donoso Ramón. Assessment of Potentially Toxic Elements in Technosols by Tailings Derived from Pb–Zn–Ag Mining Activities at San Quintín (Ciudad Real, Spain): Some Insights into the Importance of Integral Studies to Evaluate Metal Contamination Pollution Hazards. Minerals. 2019;9(6):346. DOI: 10.3390/min9060346

23. Jiang, F., Ren, B., Hursthouse, A. et al. Distribution, source identification, and ecological-health risks of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in soil of thallium mine area (southwestern Guizhou, China). Environ Sci Pollut Res. 2019;26:16556-16567.

24. Müller G. Index of geoaccumulation in sediments of the Rhine river. GeoJournal. 1969;2:108-118.

25. Zvereva V. P. Technogenic waters of tin ore deposits in the Far East. Environmental geology. Engineering geology. Hydrogeology. Geocryology. 2007;(1):51-56. (In Russ.)

26. Mamaev Yu. A., Krupskaya L. T., Grekhnev N.I., Morin V.A., Krupsky A.V. Ensuring environmental safety of potential sources of emergency at mining enterprises in the Amur River Region. Gornyy informatsionno–analiticheskiy byulleten' [Mining Information and Analytical Bulletin (scientific and technical journal)] 2008:252–259. (In Russ.)

27. Belyaev A.M. Assessment of ecological-and-geochemical hazard of mineral deposits. Bulletin of St. Petersburg University. Earth Sciences. 2011;3:43-48. (In Russ.)

28. García-Giménez R., Jiménez-Ballesta R. Mine tailings influencing soil contamination by potentially toxic elements. Environ Earth Sci. 2017;76:51.

29. Tsydypov V.V., Zhamsueva G.S., Zayakhanov A.S., et al. Impact of technogenic sands of the Dzhida tungsten-molybdenum combine TSF on the content of fine and submicron aerosol fractions in the air in Zakamensk city. Uspekhi sovremennogo estestvoznaniya [Successes of modern natural science]. 2019;4:81-86.

30. Dragana Ranđelović, Jelena Mutić, Prvoslav Marjanović, Tamara Đorđević, Milica Kašanin-Grubin. Geochemical distribution of selected elements in flotation tailings and soils/sediments from the dam spill at the abandoned antimony mine Stolice, Serbia. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. 2020;27:6253-6268.

31. Federal Law No. 116-FZ dated July 21, 1997 (as amended on July 29, 2018) "On Industrial Safety of Hazardous Industrial Facilities". (In Russ.)

32. Rastanina N. K., Krupskaya L. T. On the role of environmental factors in the health of the population of miners' settlements in the south of the Far East. Ekologiya i promyshlennost' Rossii [Ecology and Industry of Russia]. 2008;12:56-57. (In Russ.)

33. Zvereva V. P. Assessment of the impact of technogenic waters of the Kavalerovsky and Dalnegorsky mining regions on the hydrosphere of the Primorsky Territory. Ekologicheskaya khimiya [Environmental chemistry]. 2019;28(4):199-210. (In Russ.)

34. Rastanina N. K., Kuznetsova A. A. Elemental status of biological material of children living within the influence of closed tin ore enterprises of the Far Eastern Federal District. In the collection: philosophy of modern nature management in the Amur river basin. Materials of the VIII International Scientific and Practical Conference. Executive editor P. B. Ryabukhin. 2019:116-118. (In Russ.)

35. Kurolap S. A., Mamchik N. P., Klepikov O. V. Assessment of the risk to public health in case of technogenic pollution of urban environment. Voronezh: Voronezh State University Publ.; 2006. (In Russ.)

36. Krupskaya L.T., Ishchenko D.A., Golubev D.A., et al. Composition for reducing dust load on ecosphere and reclamation of TSF surface. Patent RF No. 2707030 dated 21.11.2019. (In Russ.)

Supplementary files

For citation: Krupskaya L.T., Orlov A.M., Golubev D.A., Kolobanov K.A., Filatova M.A. Assessment of environmental hazard of accumulated mineral processing waste of closed mining enterprises in the Amur river region and Primorye. Gornye nauki i tekhnologii = Mining Science and Technology (Russia). 2020;5(3):208-223.

Views: 566


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

ISSN 2500-0632 (Online)