CANBERRA, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- Australia has an opportunity to become a world-leader in sustainable mine closures amid the global green energy transition, according to the national science agency.
In a report published on Monday, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) identified mine closure solutions as a major economic opportunity for Australia.
According to the report, Australia's annual expenditure on mine closures and rehabilitation activities, including the remediation and re-vegetation of contaminated land, will exceed 4 billion Australian dollars (2.6 billion U.S. dollars), with approximately 240 mines around the country set for closure by 2040.
The report mapped how Australia can capitalize on the closures by creating a new billion-dollar industry to support mine closures, identifying opportunities in waste reduction and recovery, mine rehabilitation, land use transitions and engagement and partnerships.
"With thousands of active and inactive mines in Australia, the demand for mine closure solutions will only increase as we seek to ensure positive closures and to transition regions to successful post-mining futures," Dominic Banfield, lead author of the CSIRO report, said in a media release.
The report said that addressing challenges in post-closure land uses could deliver long-term economic, social and environmental benefits for surrounding communities, and enabling the recycling of mine waste would minimize closure liabilities.
"Looking ahead, we believe Australia can harness its domestic mine challenge to emerge as a global leader in cutting-edge mine closure solutions," said Guy Boggs, chief executive officer of the Cooperative Research Centre for Transformations in Mining Economies. ■