November 16, 2023, Vancouver, BC, Canada – A team of Knight Piésold specialists in tailings and mine waste participated in the Tailings and Mine Waste 2023 conference, which was held from November 5 to 8, 2023 at the JW Marriott Parq Hotel in Vancouver, British Columbia. Specialists from Knight Piésold’s Vancouver, Denver, and Lima offices gathered for the four-day conference, engaging with the mining community on geotechnical, environmental, and regulatory issues facing the tailings and mine waste sector.
“We are delighted to have had the opportunity to fuel the vibrant exchange of ideas at the conference,” said Ken Embree, President of Knight Piésold Canada. “From being part of a conference committee to giving presentations at a short course and technical sessions, we are driven to continue contributing to meaningful conversations that help shape the tailings and mine waste sector.”
Daniel Ruane, a senior engineer based in Knight Piésold’s Vancouver office, assisted with conference organization as a member of the advisory committee that provided support in developing the technical program for the conference.
Paul Ridlen, President of Knight Piésold USA, was one of the speakers in the short course on recent advancements and future perspectives in tailings geotechnics held on November 5. His talk titled “Recent Advances in International Technical Guidelines for Tailings Storage Facilities” was related to the ICOLD Bulletin No. 194 on Tailings Dam Safety, which was published in November 2022. The short course, presented by members of the TAILENG Consortium, focused on the role of tailings geotechnics in the design, construction, and operation of tailings storage facilities (TSFs) and presented recent methodologies and their implementation in the engineering of TSFs.
Andy Rudy, a project engineer based in Knight Piésold’s Denver office, presented a paper during the risk management session on November 7, titled “Case Study: Approach to Determining the Risk Mitigation Priority of a Historic TSF in North America.” The paper, which was co-authored by Jeff Coffin of Knight Piésold, presented a methodology to prioritize risk mitigation where little information is available but where mitigation is a high priority.
Solange Paihua, a project engineer based in Knight Piésold’s Lima office, is a co-author of the paper “Earthquake-induced Deformation Analysis of a TSF Undergoing Tailings Reprocessing,” which was presented during the geotechnical issues session on November 8. Co-authored by Paola Torres and Jorge Macedo of the Georgia Institute of Technology, the paper discusses advanced, effective stress analyses of an inactive TSF in the South American Andes to assess its seismic performance when undergoing the reprocessing of deposited tailings. Since reprocessing involves excavation, dragging, and re-handling of tailings with a high degree of saturation, the effects of earthquake-induced deformations were considered for operation planning and safety.
“The conference was a great platform for learning, conversation, and collaboration for our team, and we look forward to engaging with the mining community at next year’s conference in Colorado,” added Embree. “At Knight Piésold, we continue to stay on top of this dynamic, evolving industry to support our clients with state-of-the-art technologies and state-of-practice methodologies for the long-term success of their operations.”