REMEDIATION OF ABANDONED LIGNITE MINES IN EAST GERMANY - TECHNICAL, ENVIRONMENTAL, AND SOCIAL CHALLENGES

World Mining Congress
After German reunification the mining industry in former East Germany was profoundly restructured. Beside privatization of profitable companies the public sector took over responsibility for the mining operations to be shut down. Therefore state-owned companies cope with technical, ecological, and social challenges. The rehabilitation and reclamation has to rededicate former mining areas to new use and provided new jobs as well. In the lignite mining districts there are around 100,000 ha of mining area, a mining caused disturbance to the groundwater balance and to the system of surface water bodies of approx. 390,000 ha. They are called the largest landscape construction site in Europe. In addition to the results and diverse experience achieved over the past 23 years, a description will follow of our new challenges and of an outlook on remaining tasks. This article will describe the financing, as well as aspects of the jobcreation policy arising from lignite industry remediation.
Keywords: mining; Lignite; Lignites; Water; Waters; Germany; Groundwaters; Groundwater; Mines;
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