Health & Environment ›› Orbicon detect the environment
GME's arbejdslejr på Kvanefjeld i Sydgrønland

Orbicon detect the environment

Greenland Minerals and Energy is required to operate in accordance with the highest environmental standards. BMP defines guidelines for the so-called EIA report on the Assessment of Environmental Impact. EIA report covers the period from the first step in mining preparation until mine closure many years later. A central component of an EIA is an environmental baseline study, determining the state before the commencement of any activity.

Greenland Minerals and Energy has entered a contract with Orbicon, a Danish consulting and engineering firm, to conduct environmental baseline studies. Orbicon are specialists in the EIA study and also dealt with the environmental work for the Danish Atomic Energy Commission under the Commission's studies of  Kvanefjeld in the 1970s and 1980s. Environmental baseline data has been collected between 2007 and 2013, resulting in seven years of information to use for reporting and planning for the EIA. It ensures a strong base line studies to accurately produce state of the environment prior to any disturbance coming from the mine.

The environmental baseline study addresses three key components:
1) The chemical and ecotoxicological aspects (pollution);
2) Disturbing aspects (effects on plant and animal kingdoms), and;
3) Local use study and local knowledge.

Narsaq, South Greenland

Orbicon monitors the environment in and around Narsaq.

BMP EIA guidelines rests among countless other sources on the Arctic Environmental Protection Strategy developed by the Finnish Ministry of Environment, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Commission, the Danish EIA rules, and the Australian Federal Environment Department "Best Practices. Environmental management in mining."

An EIA report must identify the environmental impacts of the project. Orbicon have conducted baseline studies to document the environmental condition of the area before mining begins.

 "We registered what is area of biota and taken all possible samples - from fish to sheep droppings. It is also important that we know the background level in relation to radiation and heavy metals, so we can see if a later mining operation affects one or another form of release", says Flemming Pagh Jensen.

The largest deposit
Rare earth are a group elements and metals with specialty properties. they are used in among other low energy bulps, color-tv, computer screens, lasers, super conductors and solar cells and are therefore highly demanded. Almost all production of rare earth happen in China today.

Apart from rare earth deposits there are deposits of Uranium and Zinc in Kvanefjeld, which the mining company also intends to extract.