Investing in our Environment
Our success is based on what the planet provides to us, so we must treat it well. Minimising our environmental footprint is at the core of our plans – and where we do have an unavoidable impact, we aim to make a positive contribution elsewhere.
That’s why we’ve built a comprehensive approach to environmental protection at Tungsten West, based on our ISO14001 accredited Environmental Management System. This consists of tackling our climate change impact, other environmental issues such as low frequency noise, dust and blasting, and our investment in biodiversity and restoration.
Tackling our carbon footprint
Climate change is one of the biggest challenges that we are facing, and we at Tungsten West recognise our responsibility to take our responsibility. Our first step now that we’re operational is to determine what sources of emissions we can identify across our site - something which is called ‘determining the boundaries’ of our emissions profile - and measuring our baseline. We will publish this when we have it.
At the same time, we are already taking steps to analyse technical, financially feasible and cost-effective options to reduce our carbon footprint during the design, construction and operation of the Hemerdon project.
Minimising our environmental impacts
Beyond our carbon footprint, we have several other environmental impacts at Tungsten West.
In line with the environmental permits and LEP, Tungsten West undertakes water quality sampling at two discharge locations on site (Elfords Pond and Tory Pond). Tungsten West is also monitoring water quality and flow at numerous locations along the Tory Brook and Smallhanger Brook, in addition to monitoring groundwater levels across the entire site, including on site and the surrounding perimeter.
We monitor our waste generated, its movements and destination, in accordance with our EMS. In addition, we monitor aggregate movements in and out of our operations.
We monitor dust around the perimeter of the site (MWF and Pit area). Tungsten West is committed to operating to the highest environmental standards, which includes partnering with approved agencies that encourage best practices in a variety of areas. In this vein, the Company will be conducting a screening assessment in accordance with the Institute of Air Quality Management Guidance on the Assessment of Mineral Dust Impacts for Planning. This will set out the best available approach to mitigate dust as well as the monitoring scheme, investigating complaints and provide comprehensive feedback.
Low Frequency Noise (LFN)
Tungsten West are reducing the amount of material entering the process plant that will significantly streamline the sorting process with less crushing required. Due to these new processing techniques being implemented, combined with innovative technology, there will be a significant reduction in the size of the screening panels required which will have a hugely positive impact on the level of LFN
Previously, Wolf Minerals would run blasts up to three times a week. However, Tungsten West is collating a Blast Impact Minimisation and Monitoring Scheme which will be examined and approved by the Mineral Planning Authority and will outline the best available techniques for blasting at the mine. Additionally, through open and transparent dialogue with residents, the company will be able to present the mitigation plan once complete.
The figures below include the surface and groundwater monitoring regimes in place to ensure the protection of the environment.
Restoring our natural beauty
Through a £13.2m Restoration Bond, we have made a fully funded restoration commitment for the Hemerdon project. We are also involved in a principal tree planting scheme, which plants 42,000 trees alongside creating important Biodiversity Enhancement Zones.