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European regulation of mine water and waste

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jaime AmezagaORCiD


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Since the end of the sixties the European Union has been developing a body of environmental legislation that now covers nearly all areas of industrial activity. However, until recently there has been no environmental legislation applying specifically to the mining sector. The impact of the accidents in Aznalcollar (Spain) and Baia Mare (Rumania) brought about a review of European legislation. This process led to the approval of a new Directive on the management of waste from the extractive industry which will come into force in 2008. In this article the most important environmental directives with an effect on the mining sector and the changes introduced by the new legislation are analysed. The conclusion is that the general impact of the legislation has been reduced by its focus on mining waste facilities rather than on mining sites. As a consequence, too much burden has been left to other instruments, such as the Water Framework Directive, which lack the capacity to enforce effective pollution prevention measures.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Amezaga JM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Afinidad

Year: 2007

Volume: 64

Issue: 528

Pages: 177-181

ISSN (print): 0001-9704

ISSN (electronic):

Publisher: Asociacion de Quimicos e Ingenieros