The principal environmental legacy from over 100 years of mining at Kabwe is widespread pollution in the Kabwe region. These problems are again being addressed in a recent, new (2015) initiative by the Zambian Government with support from the World Bank. BMR is working closely with the World Bank in providing sustainable solutions for the population of Kabwe which includes not only cleaning up the environment, but providing long term work prospects.
The Zambian Government, through ZCCM Investment Holdings Plc ("ZCCM"), retained responsibility for a wide range of environmental concerns which have not been passed on to the subsequent mining entities. Although BMR is thus insulated entirely from responsibility for legacy issues, it intends to fully play its part in remediating and improving the environment in carrying out activities at Kabwe.
BMR will make be making a major contribution to the clean-up of Kabwe’s environment by removing almost 300,000 tonnes of lead and a similar amount of zinc from the different waste dumps during the life of the tailings re-treatment project.
By re-processing the dumps in an environmentally responsible manner BMR will play a key role in contributing to public health and welfare and through employment, help to regenerate an economically depressed region.
BMR submitted a draft Environmental and Social Impact Assessment to the Zambian Environmental Management Agency ("ZEMA") in October 2015 for the proposed acid/brine leach process. Approval is required from ZEMA before construction of the Pilot Plant can commence and is expected in the near future.