Videos highlight impact of Mongolian mining

Dec 20, 2013
Videos highlight impact of Mongolian mining
SMI researchers, finding a sustainable balance for herders and Mining in Mongolia.

The dramatic expansion of Mongolian mine sites from initial diggings to their present size has been captured using satellite imagery for the first time by researchers at The University of Queensland's Sustainable Minerals Institute (SMI).

The two videos show satellite footage of the mine sites, the surrounding urbanisation, new roads and illegal small-scale or 'ninja' mining sites.

Produced using Landsat of Tavan Tolgoi coal mine in the South Gobi Desert and Sharyn Gol in the Northern steppe region of Mongolia, the videos cover an approximate 40-year time series depicting the growth and scale of impacts from mining.

UQ SMI Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining (CSRM) Project Manager Isabel Cane said the videos would be used to study changes to herder community livelihoods through social changes stimulated directly and indirectly by ecological impacts.

"The images visually display the mine-related environmental impacts that these sites are facing, and provide insights into the effects the mines are having on local communities," Ms Cane said.

She added that the videos would contribute to the broader goals of the research: to demonstrate changes in natural resources and to assist in predicting future sustainable development objectives for the affected communities.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

The images are the first product of a two-year Australian aid project funded through the Australian Development Research Awards Scheme (ADRAS) entitled 'Managing the impacts of minerals development on women and men and their traditional livelihoods in Mongolia'.

The ADRAS project is part of a new Mongolia Research Hub focused on sustainable development in Mongolia.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

It brings together current CSRM research in Mongolia, with information on the country and its rapidly developing mining sector.

 "The Hub will be a portal to access new outputs from expanding research on Mongolian mining and help build Australian engagement with the development potential in that country," Ms Cane said.

The Australian Government has recognised Mongolia as a priority country in mining for development, with the aim to ensure that revenue is distributed equitably, and that social and environmental impacts are managed well.

The CSRM currently has four research projects in Mongolia, partnering with such organisations as the International Mining for Development Centre (an Australian aid initiative), the Sirolli Institute, and other Mongolian stakeholders.

Explore further: Pact with devil? California farmers use oil firms' water

More information: Watch both videos: www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDiHRTYmH9dSdwm02g5YLZfAsMcx09y7Z

Related Stories

Koalas and mine site restoration

Feb 13, 2013

One of the guiding principles of rehabilitating disturbed landscapes and mine sites – that if you restore their plant diversity, the animals that once lived there will return – does not always hold true, ...

Recommended for you

Historic environmental awareness is changing China

3 hours ago

In China, there has been an explosion of interest in the environment. There is every indication that extreme air pollution is driving new visions of sustainability and new formats of interaction between the ...

Research to aid Californian drought response

4 hours ago

The worsening drought in California has prompted US agencies to turn to Australian researchers to identify the most effective strategies Australian utilities and agencies used to survive the Millennium Drought.

Stronger action needed to transform the UK's energy system

9 hours ago

An ambitious policy package is essential for the UK to transform its energy system to achieve the deep reductions in carbon emissions required to avoid dangerous climate change, according to research led by UCL scientists. ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.