When Mining Is Finished – What Then?
Why consider mining bonds? I have often submitted, the biggest problem with mining is leaving damage to the environment, and that there are the virtually no enforceable safeguards.
We need enforceable safeguards to make sure mining sites are fully rehabilitated; and we them need NOW!!
In many ways mining is like renting a house or a business premises; you can use the site but you have conditions on the manner of use and how to look after it – at the end of the lease the premises must be returned in an acceptable condition. Given that the current government’s conditions of being there and doing the mining are often vastly different to the communities standards of reasonable expectations; therefore, as such, they need to be tightened up a lot and codified so that an acceptable standard is met.
But putting that aside for a moment, under the current terms a miner must comply with certain relaxed conditions and the real questions is: – Is the government in a position to do anything about enforcing more reasonable rehabilitation conditions; or are they even interested in such a plan for responsible mining; or are members of parliament far too close to some people and businesses involved in mining?
Can we have a mining bond to guarantee full rehabilitation of mining sites by this government?
That is the big question! Unfortunately the answer is a big no! Is that the way it must remain forever? No, not really at all!! There is a better way and I can do it!
The United States of America woke up to a part of the problem some time ago (in the 1970’s) but our political leaders just accept the mess that is left for us. Our county is fast becoming one big messy hole. The so called standard of rehabilitation is not good enough at all. That standard is now not even being reached as we see the miners attitude towards leaving these massive huge holes created in our Hunter Valley.
We need a new plan and I am in the process of developing, with the assistance of our community, a reasonable process so we will achieve a strong result for all of us, as far as the end result of mining is concerned. A strong and robust mining bond account will give us a guarantee that the site will not be left as a total mess without any capacity to fix the problem!
We have yet another problem: – the movement of responsibility via the so called bankruptcy acts of our world and as well as here in Australia.
Too often major businesses trade intentionally in a way to shift assets from one part of their business to another part for the express purpose of bankrupting one part of the business; so as to isolate the main business from any “red flags” that are on the business horizon, and to consolidate different part of the business. So when liabilities are rising in a business area the consideration of the shifting of the assets is undertaken to protect some of the main shareholders, or another part of the business. This process can have the isolated part of the business go bankrupt with huge debts that cannot be satisfied while the ‘parent company’ continues on its merry business way. This has got to stop! I want to develop a plan to prevent this happening as well!
A part of the solution:
A resource bond, “a mining bond”, for all mining operations needs to be established and therefore a miner will need to deposit into a fund such as is reasonably determined to be sufficient to substantially cover the rehabilitation of the mined area, in case the acceptable standard of rehabilitation is not reached or there is such an event causing environmental damage to the extent that may extinguish the right continue to hold the mining lease. These funds cannot be recovered by the mining company unless the site is fully rehabilitated when/ or after the miner wishes to vacate the site after a full rehabilitation of the site. As well the changing of the lease holder (mine operator) will involve an assessment of the adequacy of the provisions made for the rehabilitation process and if there is deemed to be insufficient funds on hand in the fund; then further funds will need to be added to the fund before a change of lease holder can occur.
I am offering a real solution for effective rehabilitation of mining sites via a mining bond
Are you with me??