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post #46 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
quote:Then how do you explain this:
http://www.wise-uranium.org/mdaf.html
The table at the link you posted has a column titled "Type of Incident" which I scanned. In most cases the information there answers your question, but in a nutshell I would say it is "poor design" or in a few cases "operation outside the design parameters". Tailings dams can and are designed, constructed and operated safely.
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post #47 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by dlofting

Quote:
quote:Then how do you explain this:
http://www.wise-uranium.org/mdaf.html
The table at the link you posted has a column titled "Type of Incident" which I scanned. In most cases the information there answers your question, but in a nutshell I would say it is "poor design" or in a few cases "operation outside the design parameters". Tailings dams can and are designed, constructed and operated safely.
In other words, human failure is to blame.

Human artifacts and practices are chock-full of examples of provision for circumstances of human failure. Should we get rid of highway ambulances and just say that people should obey the traffic laws? Should your car have a solid steering column because you should never run into anything?

Perhaps the proper question is whether tailings dams fail at a rate and with consequences that would mandate having spillways. Or certain tailings dams having spillways and not others. Obviously in our current grasp of the economy, and greed, and disrespect for a clean environment, we choose not to have spillways on any tailings dams.

I suspect the real reason tailings dams don't have spillways is the added cost (like, you can't make spillways cheaply by piling up dirt), and the additional cost of upgrading spillways during what seems to be the typical practice of raising these dams.
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post #48 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 05:24 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Hiker Boy

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sgRant

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Hiker Boy

Spillways are not typically part of tailings ponds because the idea of the pond is containment. Water from tailings ponds is supposed to be recycled and the excess to evaporate. I dont see the government allowing spillways as a solution because that water is untreated. This is a clear case of poor design of the pond itself, the dam being constructed wrong, the company mismanaging water levels, and the lack of government oversight.
But in the quite possible event that containment isn't possible, wouldn't it be better to provide a spillway than have an inevitable and total dam failure? Does the company have fire extinguishers in its offices? Offices are not meant to catch on fire.

In fact the government has allowed the mine to dump tailings into the waterways. So presumably a regulation regime could exist to control use of the spillway.
Needing a spillway is a failure in engineering and/or a failure in compliance by the company. This wasn't a random event but a failure in planning and a failure by the government to watch them more closely. Building spillways sets a precendent for them to be used...a dangerous road. I'm not totally against it but it would be better to build and inspect long term plans for production levels and dealing with excess water. Perhaps they needed another tailings pond, a water treatment plant, or possibly cut production levels for a while. Looking at that particular dam, I think it was going to fail, with or without a spillway.
But I gather permitted spills (via pumping?) are typical for tailings ponds. I've read this has happened with this very dam. So if "spills" are going to be allowed anyway, why not provide for uncontrolled circumstances? Certainly the dams should be built, maintained and inspected with due diligence. Would it ruin the economy to also provide spillways? I bet that the real costs of this one spill will far exceed the cost of providing spillways on all such dams in BC.

If we can't regulate use of spillways, then how can we claim to be able to regulate dams without them? I understand your point that spillways make intentional spills more tempting (but intentional spills are happening anyway). It logically follows that any regulation to raise the quality or performance of these dams actually results in lower quality dams or more careless operation of them.

Just wait until one of the tarsands dams lets go.
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post #49 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 06:01 PM
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LOL, I love these threads, lots of armchair engineers spouting off on what they do not know. Throw in a bit of trolls being trolled = Clubtread gold.

It's a tragedy, for sure, but I'll wait for the engineers report on why it failed before I start lighting my hair on fire or throwing stones.
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post #50 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by tzoflier

Four days after the disaster, the photo ops are done, now time for the World Class Spill Response Premier Christy promised.
I certainly hope she isn't implying or even remotely hinting/suggesting that the taxpayers are going to be on the hook for this....

And I agree about your suggestions for the use of the "near drinking-quality " water...they should be forced to use it!
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post #51 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sgRant

Judge for yourselves who is trolling.
Well that would be the first person to start with the insulting which is clearly, inarguably, you and Marc. You two both decided you couldn't make a post that actually stuck to the subject and instantly tried calling him out with insults. Your inability to recognize this undeniable fact is indicative of your own inability to be honest, responsible or deal with reality.

It's clear as day: someone starts a thread about the tailing pond leak and the next two posts are you and Marc pestering Farmer out of nowhere. No wonder the moderators completely ignore your whining. I applaud their restraint, frankly. Shows maturity to recognize and ignore that kind of childish complaint.



On the subject of the tailing pond leak~

Well what can I say B.C.? It looks good on you. A nice homegrown environmental disaster is precisely what you needed to break you out of your misfiring synaptic brain rut of schadenfreude towards Alberta and the endless self-indulgent ad nauseam-mantra of, "We're-environmental-stewards-and-Alberta's-a-bunch-of-poopy-pants". This is a really good opportunity B.C., to maybe consider if that the poop smell you've gleefully been blaming Alberta for might actually be coming from your own upper lip.


How's the grizzly trophy season going, btw? The wolf killing contests still providing entertainment are they? Good to hear. Keep up all that good environmental stewardship, B.C.!

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post #52 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 09:43 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sgRant

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Hiker Boy

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sgRant

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Hiker Boy

Spillways are not typically part of tailings ponds because the idea of the pond is containment. Water from tailings ponds is supposed to be recycled and the excess to evaporate. I dont see the government allowing spillways as a solution because that water is untreated. This is a clear case of poor design of the pond itself, the dam being constructed wrong, the company mismanaging water levels, and the lack of government oversight.
But in the quite possible event that containment isn't possible, wouldn't it be better to provide a spillway than have an inevitable and total dam failure? Does the company have fire extinguishers in its offices? Offices are not meant to catch on fire.

In fact the government has allowed the mine to dump tailings into the waterways. So presumably a regulation regime could exist to control use of the spillway.


Needing a spillway is a failure in engineering and/or a failure in compliance by the company. This wasn't a random event but a failure in planning and a failure by the government to watch them more closely. Building spillways sets a precendent for them to be used...a dangerous road. I'm not totally against it but it would be better to build and inspect long term plans for production levels and dealing with excess water. Perhaps they needed another tailings pond, a water treatment plant, or possibly cut production levels for a while. Looking at that particular dam, I think it was going to fail, with or without a spillway.
But I gather permitted spills (via pumping?) are typical for tailings ponds. I've read this has happened with this very dam. So if "spills" are going to be allowed anyway, why not provide for uncontrolled circumstances? Certainly the dams should be built, maintained and inspected with due diligence. Would it ruin the economy to also provide spillways? I bet that the real costs of this one spill will far exceed the cost of providing spillways on all such dams in BC.

If we can't regulate use of spillways, then how can we claim to be able to regulate dams without them? I understand your point that spillways make intentional spills more tempting (but intentional spills are happening anyway). It logically follows that any regulation to raise the quality or performance of these dams actually results in lower quality dams or more careless operation of them.

Just wait until one of the tarsands dams lets go.
Some mines are permitted to discharge a certain quantity of treated water. I highly doubt that any mine is permitted to discharge untreated water, regardless of the measure quality, without any sort of treatment.

What they had applied for was a permit to discharge more treated water than previously anticipated. This is not just pumping water over the dam.

Spillways are a poor solution, essentially the equivalent of PPE. There are three types of controls that can be designed into any process. In order of preference, engineering in controls, which prevent the problem from happening in the first place, administrative controls, which set rules to minimize exposure, and personal protective equipment, which mitigates the hazard of a problem that does exist. While spillways would help mitigate over topping failure, it really doesn't address the true problem. There earthen dams are not meant to hold back any substantial amount of standing water. They are meant to hold tailings as it dewaters. Tunneling and other hydrostatic pressure related hazard would still pose a hazard if a spillway were built.
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post #53 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 10:07 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Release

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sgRant

Judge for yourselves who is trolling.
Well that would be the first person to start with the insulting which is clearly, inarguably, you and Marc. You two both decided you couldn't make a post that actually stuck to the subject and instantly tried calling him out with insults. Your inability to recognize this undeniable fact is indicative of your own inability to be honest, responsible or deal with reality.

It's clear as day: someone starts a thread about the tailing pond leak and the next two posts are you and Marc pestering Farmer out of nowhere. No wonder the moderators completely ignore your whining. I applaud their restraint, frankly. Shows maturity to recognize and ignore that kind of childish complaint.
Here is a little rule you can use to help you decide what trolling looks like. Trolls insult people themselves, if you'll note the things I've said, I'm only commenting on things Farmer actually said and not on Farmer as a person.
LOL, believe me if/when you see me troll a thread you'll know it.

I won't mention the "irony" of you chiding sgrant and I about trolling Farmer while you go on to troll everyone in the province of B.C.
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post #54 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 11:00 PM
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Quote:
quote:
Quote:
quote:
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post #55 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 11:30 PM
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Question:

The tailings are safe and reasonably stable at the artificially raised pH of the tailings pond, well over 8.

How acid does the water have to be before leaching of the toxic metals begin? And what is the natural pH of Polley and and Quesnel lakes? A quick search didn't find me specifics.
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post #56 of (permalink) Old 08-08-2014, 11:48 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Marc

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Release

Quote:
quote:Originally posted by sgRant

Judge for yourselves who is trolling.
Well that would be the first person to start with the insulting which is clearly, inarguably, you and Marc. You two both decided you couldn't make a post that actually stuck to the subject and instantly tried calling him out with insults. Your inability to recognize this undeniable fact is indicative of your own inability to be honest, responsible or deal with reality.

It's clear as day: someone starts a thread about the tailing pond leak and the next two posts are you and Marc pestering Farmer out of nowhere. No wonder the moderators completely ignore your whining. I applaud their restraint, frankly. Shows maturity to recognize and ignore that kind of childish complaint.
Here is a little rule you can use to help you decide what trolling looks like. Trolls insult people themselves, if you'll note the things I've said, I'm only commenting on things Farmer actually said and not on Farmer as a person.
LOL, believe me if/when you see me troll a thread you'll know it.

I won't mention the "irony" of you chiding sgrant and I about trolling Farmer while you go on to troll everyone in the province of B.C.
Marc, I stopped myself before posting this earlier, but evidently you have the option to email you turned off, and I want you to read this from me. I consider your comment to have been tongue-in-cheek, and not trolling or insulting in any way. I appreciate you asking for my opinion. We've hiked together in the past, and if in the future I'm back home, I look forward to doing so again.

Cheers,

Bryan
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post #57 of (permalink) Old 08-09-2014, 01:27 AM
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.. and that's the way the cookie crumbles..
everytime on CT..

best to remove the CC topics all together from this forum. always ends in a lot of hate and frustrations that do not ever get resolved.
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post #58 of (permalink) Old 08-09-2014, 01:42 AM
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Turns out the mine owner is a major funding contributor to the BC Liberal Party.

http://commonsensecanadian.ca/bennet...liberal-donor/
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post #59 of (permalink) Old 08-09-2014, 01:52 AM
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A well used and effective tactic of the 50 cent party is to derail what could be constructive informative discussion. Does Farmer fit that description? Sometimes spewing obscenities and provoking all-out flame wars, sometimes ever so calmly, nicely and very knowledgeably participating in rational discussion.

So Farmer, are you getting some supplemental income?

And also, anyone who will supply me a good link and facts not general soothing, is the fact that the tailings are now at the bottom of natural water too big to be treated as the pond was, does the "non acid producing" tailings change there relatively benign nature and start to leach at nasty levels?
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post #60 of (permalink) Old 08-09-2014, 11:24 AM
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Quote of SgRant
While those closest to the deficient mine operations are most at fault, we all share some blame. The mindless consumer culture that gobbles natural resources to make junk that we casually discard in mind-boggling quantities.

Keep it coming I work in non ferrous salvage.

The skewed economic system that puts little or no value on what is most critical to life. The externalized damage that amounts to stealing from the future.

We all have this internal greed syndrome.

Electing incompetent governments.

Name one government anywhere on earth that got back into power after saying no to spending foolishly. Emperor Christy is no different from you and I in that we want to be in power of our lives after a decision is made. If our emperor actually got tough with spending she would not last very long in office before we elected the next group that would give us what we want.

Demanding maximized paybacks from investments.

Hmmmn investments , what do I need money for anyway.?

Hopefully this event will wake people up, and this widened scope of blame should be part of the discussion.

As has been stated on CKNW most people did not know what a tailings pond was before this happened. Better enforced guidelines and an independent enforcement agency might help. More regulation ? Less union jobs !

Hey Farmer I enjoyed your essay on the Tailings pond however you and several others need to clean up your language skills.
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