Wales hosts an internationally themed metal mine recovery conference

An international conference to explore the development of a Wales-based centre of excellence for metal mine recovery will take place in Aberystwyth.

Hosted by Natural Resources Wales and The Coal Authority, the MineXchange Conference brings together metal mines restoration and mine water treatment experts from industry, academia and the public sector. 

Conference experts and delegates will be sharing their knowledge and experience in developing sustainable solutions to aid the recovery and restoration of damaged metal mine environments in Wales and beyond.

Peter Stanley, Lead Specialist Geotechnical Engineer, for NRW said:

“The MineXchange conference plays an important role in driving Wales’ Metal Mine programme and has led to the successful development of innovative metal mine remediation trials at Frongoch, Cwm Rheidol, Cwmystwyth, Nant y Mwyn and Bwlchglas. 
“The trials at Cwm Rheidol and Frongoch include the use of electrochemistry to remove pollutants from mine waters and tackle this unwanted legacy of Wales’ industrial past. The applications being used are believed to be the first of their kind.
“We will be sharing discoveries in Phyto (plant-based) treatment of mining spoil, providing updates on the successful treatment of metal mine environments in Wales with planting trials from Aberystwyth University and biochar applications. 
“The British Geological Survey will also introduce an exciting new site investigation technique for contaminated land.”

The conference will include an excursion to Frongoch and Cwm Rheidol to observe the electrochemical treatment systems.

This year the conference will welcome Professor Jose Miguel Nieto of the University of Huelva in Spain, who will share his groundbreaking experience in introducing passive mine water remediation in the Odiel Basin, one of the world’s most impacted river systems contaminated by the mines of the Iberian Pyrite Belt.

Nick Cox from The Coal Authority added:

“The MineXchange conference is looking really interesting and we are looking forward to sharing the results of our work on the metal mine programme in Wales and a flavour of our academically-led healthy research and development projects.”