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Water Optimization in the Mining Sector
The site’s water withdrawal is restricted to 5,794,000m3. In order to continue expanding its operations without relying on additional water resources, Lomas Bayas investigated opportunities to improve its water efficiency, including replacing the original leach pad sprinkler system with a drip system that significantly reduced the water lost to evaporation.
At a project cost of $US1.1 million, the results have been notable. Between 2008 and 2013, the evaporative loss in the leaching process was reduced by 54 percent from 9.8 to 4.5 liters of water per square meter per day. Compared to the previous sprinkler system, the drip feed system optimized the use of water of the Lomas Bayas site by 19 percent.