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Water Today Title May 30, 2024
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Green Mining SRL: extraction of gold and rare earth elements without use of chemical agents, water-wise operations and economic benefits to the local community Edoardo Ghirelli, Green Mining SRL

WT Ė Welcome, thanks for doing this. I would just ask Edoardo to say who he is, what is organization is called and then what his organization does, and I will ask the next question.
Edoardo Ghirelli: I am the Geologist responsible for the sustainable and responsible management of the natural resources of Green Mining, I am speaking about the project to extract gold and rare earth elements. Connected with me (on the call) is Mr Donato Pescatori, one of the main partners of Green Mining.

We are a joint venture mining company, we could say a bridge between Italy and Argentina. We are mining a concession "Aluvion Royoi" located on the border between Argentina and Chile. The main point of our organization, of our project, is that we extract gold and other critical metals and rare earth elements, just processing sediment. We extract these types of minerals without any use of chemical agents, so without the implementation of mercury or cyanide. We take advantage of the natural properties of the sediments to separate the minerals of our interest from the by-product. The production chain that we implement in our mining operations its totally sustainable in terms of a different mentality in the mining industry because we could say our project is the result of a socially inclusive and environmental efficient mining operation. We are totally socially open to the local community, we already informed the local community of our campaign and we want to share the benefits in the project with the local community. So, the prospecting and exploration campaign is set to compensate the local area and to share benefit and business opportunities, this is the general way of our project.

WT: This is a joint project between Italy and Argentina and you are doing sustainable gold mining. Tell me how this process of sustainable gold mining is different than normal gold mining?

EG Ė Yes, the opportunity to learn about our project on our website Green Mining SRL you will find a description of our pilot production plant (designed) to extract gold without any use of chemicals. The production chain is very simple but very effective in terms environmental impact. As I said we donít use chemical agents; we donít use a large amount of water. If we do use water at some point of the production, we will reuse the water in the production chain, this is a small example of circular energy in our production chain.

How this works in our production plant, the first step is to process the sediment with primary and secondary crushing of the minerals. The second step, which is the main and critical step is the magnetic separation in order to separate two main class of concentrate: the diamagnetic concentrate, that is the one that includes gold. On the other end of magnetic separation is to produce the paramagnetic concentrate, this is the one that contains rare earth elements and other type of critical metals. Back to the production line of gold, the diamagnetic concentrate is subjected to another stage and type of processing, that is the gravimetric processing. We implemented a physical separation, with the spiral concentrator, the gravimeter with the shaking table we can recover and separate the heavy minerals from the light minerals. In general terms, the light minerals are not the economic value minerals. The heavy minerals are the economic value minerals, speaking about gold and other elements. The work of the shaking table is to recover the heavy metals, we then refine in order to increase the mineral concentration of gold in our final product. ready to be marketed.

During the final stage of the rare earth element concentrate process, the electromagnetic separator purifies the paramagnetic concentrate and obtain a further concentration of rare earth elements, this is the by-product of our primary (gold) production chain.


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