Reclaiming Value from Abandoned Mines: Helping Global Mining Leader Unlock New Circular Economy Opportunities

Executing Circularity at scale via Abandoned Mines

Our client is a large global mining services company that provides various services to mining companies around the world. As social and environmental sustainability has become increasingly important in the mining industry, our client wanted to develop new service offerings focused on the circular economy and remediation of abandoned mine sites.

However, the company must leverage this expertise into new services aligned with circular economic principles to create additional revenue streams.

Project Background

Our consulting firm was engaged to help the client develop a circular economy strategy focused specifically on opportunities related to abandoned and orphaned mine sites. There are over 200,000 abandoned mines globally that pose environmental, health, and safety issues for neighbouring communities.

We conducted an opportunity assessment to identify potential services our client could provide to governments and land owners to remediate contaminated sites and extract residual mineral resources in a sustainable manner. Our work aimed to align economic incentives with positive social and environmental impact.

Key Questions

The key questions we aimed to address through this project included:

  • What market opportunities exist on a global basis related to remediating and reclaiming abandoned mine sites?
  • How can our client leverage its assets and capabilities to provide compelling and differentiated services focused on circular economy principles?
  • What current and emerging regulations related to abandoned mines need to be considered as part of a new service development strategy?
  • What partnerships should be explored to validate ideas and develop proof of concepts for new offerings?
  • What are the economics of providing various remediation, reprocessing, and site reclamation services?

Approach and Methodology

We utilised a five-phase approach to develop a robust circular economy strategy for the client:

  1. Landscape Analysis: Detailed evaluation of the current abandoned mine landscape, including geospatial, regulatory, social, and market analyses.
  2. Stakeholder Mapping: Identification of key stakeholders involved in abandoned mine remediation and circular resource reclamation.
  3. Opportunity Identification: Assessment of potential service offerings across the value chain that our client could provide, focused on economic feasibility, social/environmental impact, and alignment with client capabilities.
  4. Risk assessment: performed detailed capability gap analysis and risk assessment of the various opportunities available.
  5. Strategy Development: Prioritization of opportunities into a 3-5 year roadmap with recommendations for partnerships, proof of concepts, and market entry strategies.

Key Findings and Recommendations

Through our opportunity assessment and strategy development process, we identified three key service offerings that provided both economic upside and positive sustainability impact:

  1. Whole-site remediation and reclamation services
  2. Mineral upgrading and reprocessing technology leveraging on-site assets
  3. Sustainable land revitalisation programs creating future socio-economic value

We provided detailed market entry and partnership strategies for these offerings and phasing plans.

Results and Outcomes

The outcome of this engagement was a targeted circular economy strategy and initial pipeline of opportunities specifically focused on the growing challenges around abandoned mining sites. Our recommendations aimed to leverage our client’s core capabilities while increasing their relevance and competitiveness in a quickly evolving landscape.

Our collaboration built an innovative path forward that supports their continued leadership.

How Evolveable Consulting Can Help You

If you are interested in developing an innovative circularity strategy for your company or want to learn more about our circularity solutions, please contact us today.


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