Mining can have negative impacts on ecosystem functionality, biodiversity and ecosystem services through initial stages of surface mineral extraction and land clearing. The rehabilitation of mine sites may have the potential to return these ecosystem services lost or provide alternative ecosystem services through the establishment of alternative post-mining land use options.

The aim of this research is to assess current rehabilitation practices with an ecosystem services approach and identify whether ecosystem services are considered in the planning and implementation of post-mining land use options. Using case studies, this research will aim to quantify the links between mining rehabilitation practices and the delivery of ecosystem services to suit physical and social conditions of mining environments. In particular, the benefits provided by ecosystem services through rehabilitation efforts to local communities will be considered, and any trade-offs that may arise through alternative post-mining land use options, as opposed to the restoration of existing pre-mining land uses.

Funding:  RTP scholarship
Advisors:  Dr Laura Sonter, Dr Talitha Santini

Project members

Robyn BOLDY

PhD candidate