Management of Mine Waste through Geochemistry and Phytoremediation 

Before environmental law regulated mining closure, mine waste was left without remediation. Currently, these liabilities represent a threat to the environment overall when acid mine drainage (AMD) is produced. Last decades, efforts were undertaken in order to minimize the negative effects of this substances; however, isolated strategies are not enough for this complex socio-environmental issue.

My research integrates geochemistry to evaluate AMD sources, water and sediments quality of affected streams, and biological approach to establishing a plan for remediation through native plants.

Biography

I hold a chemical engineering degree. At an early stage of my career, I was focused on the improvements of the grade and recovery of metals. I  worked in different polymetallic mine companies in a chemical and metallurgical laboratory.

After witnessing the difficult relationship among mining companies and peasant communities, I decided to study a Masters degree on environmental development. I was recipient of the Aristotle Scholarship at Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru (PUCP), which was granted to top ranking Master's students.

For my Master's thesis, I received a grant from the PUCP to conduct a research on the environmental impacts of abandoned mining tailings. This was awarded due to social relevance. Following this I was a lecturer in Geomorphology, Ecology, and Environmental Impact Assessment at PUCP. 

Industry

I worked at Antamina Mining Company in the Metallurgical Laboratory, I was in charge of developing mathematical models to add reagents for the copper concentration process. I also conducted research in copper concentration to verify the effects of sulfosalts in its quality.

Additionally, I was a practitioner at Doe Run Peru - La Oroya, I conducted research to determine the optimal amount of zinc sulphate and temperature to improve the zinc purification process. I undertook pre-professional training at the chemical laboratory of Pan-American Silver - Quiruvilca Mine Company. 

Collaborations

I have collaborated with the Canadian International Resources and Development Institute  (CIRDI) as a consultant for Education and Research for Integrated Water Resources Management in Peru. Furthermore, I was in charge of the education management of the Diploma in Specialization of Water and Mining offered by the  Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru and The University of British Columbia, Canada.

Funding

University of Queensland Scholarship for PhD Candidature

Supervisors

Dr Mansour Edraki & Dr Antony van der Ent