R10bn to clean up toxic wa­ter

The Star Early Edition - - BUSINESS NEWS -

SOUTH Africa got funds for a pro­gramme that may cost R10 bil­lion to clean up toxic wa­ter leak­ing from aban­doned mine shafts in and around Jo­han­nes­burg. After in­ten­sively min­ing in the re­gion for 120 years, the city is lit­tered with enor­mous mined-out cav­erns that have be­come flooded. Wa­ter com­bines with toxic met­als such as ura­nium, a by-prod­uct of gold min­ing, and seeps into rivers, a process called acid-mine drainage. “An amount of R10 bil­lion is re­quired for acid-mine drainage mit­i­ga­tion in the Wit­wa­ter­srand gold fields,” the Wa­ter and San­i­ta­tion Depart­ment said in re­sponse to a par­lia­men­tary ques­tion. Part of the cost of the treat­ment will be borne by min­ing com­pa­nies in the area. – Bloomberg

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