Coral Bay Nickel Corporation (CBNC) has received accolades from participants of the Tailings and Mine Waste 2017 Conference held in Banff, Alberta, Canada for its successful rehabilitation of Tailing Storage Facility 1 located in Bgy. Rio Tuba, Bataraza.
Engr. Briccio Abela, Environmental Management and Quality Control manager of CBNC was one of the presenters during the annual conference organized by Alberta Geotechnical Centre and Oil Sands Tailings Research Facility last November 5-8, 2017
Among the attendees were 359 delegates from 18 countries composed of mine waste managers, engineers involved with tailings management and reclamation, regulators and researchers.
Engr.]Abela showcased the strategies of the company in revegetating the tailings soil using local and native grasses, shrubs and tree species.
The 71-hectare tailings facility was decommissioned in 2010 and was planted with local grasses and shrubs. Hundreds of indigenous people were engaged to do the planting as livelihood.
After two years of planting, the area was totally covered with grasses and shrubs which controlled the siltation, green landscape recreated and much needed biomass was produced.
In 2013, endemic trees were planted in the tailings facility. Three years after, a total of 94, 338 local and native tree species are growing sustainably in the area. The survival rate of trees planted reached to 90%.
“This is very different because in three years the total area was covered with vegetation,” Abela said.
According to Engr. Abela, the goal of the company is to restore a functional ecosystem and the area becomes productive.
Among the trees planted in the restored tailings facility are premium species of trees like Narra, Ipil, Palawan Mangkono, Manggis and Amugis. Fruit bearing trees are also present in the area like guyabano, durian, langka, kalamansi, mango, coffee and star apple, among others.
“Planted trees which are two years or older were observed to grow sustainably,” according to the presentation paper of Engr. Abela.
One notable statement from Abela in his presentation is the “positive impact of the conducted rehabilitation works is the employment generated for the IPs and local indigents.”
During the peak of grass planting in 2011-2013, more than 100 workers were employed.
“ The revegetation of tailing soil serves as a ‘posted boy’ that relays a strong messag