Zimplats is expected to spend US$19.4 million on the rehabilitation of old mining sites this year, a company official has revealed.
Zimplats group safety, health environment and quality manager, Abednego Chigwada, indicated that the programme was their duty as a responsible corporate citizen.
“Mine rehabilitation obligation at the end of full year 2015 is US$19.4 million… The provision is the present value of the expected rehabilitation costs at the end of the life of the mine,” said Chigwada during a mining summer school hosted by the Zimbabwean Environmental Lawyers Association (Zela).
He said the provision was based on a mines and environmental rehabilitation plan that was approved by the company’s board.
Chigwada revealed that a total of US$33.9 million was estimated to cover the future cost of rehabilitation, up from last year’s US$27 million.
He said the rehabilitation of Ngezi open pits alone would cost a total of US$5.8 million.
Chigwada said Ngezi rehabilitation commenced in 2011 and was scheduled for completion in the next two years.
It is mandatory for mines operating in the country to have an environmentally friendly rehabilitation plan as prescribed by law.
Government, through the Environmental Management Act, has established an environmental levy and environmental fund, where two percent of the revenue from each mining activity in the country is remitted.