Evolution Mining has engaged independent Auckland-based consultancy Pattle Delamore Partners (PDP) to undertake a comprehensive environmental baseline study which commenced in February 2016. PDP were selected for their particular expertise in mercury chemistry, which is a key area of concern in the Puhipuhi area, and also for their multi-disciplinary scientific capability. The study has been designed, incorporating feedback from local community stakeholders including Ngati Hau and other hapu such as Ngatiwai and Te Uriroroi. The scope for the baseline study and the initial completed reports can be viewed here.
Information gathered as part of this study will address specific concerns around the potential for our activities to affect:
- water quality in aquifers
- surface water quality
- downstream dispersion of contaminants
- food webs and food sources such as kōura / kēwai (freshwater crayfish) and tuna (freshwater eels)
- release of mercury and other metals from soil/rock/sediment to waterways
The initial baseline study will include:
- Surface and ground water analysis
- Soil surveys and analysis
- Stream sediment surveys
- Flora and fauna surveys
The results will be used to build a model that will help us understand the relationship of groundwater and surface water with underlying geological (rock) units and the extent of interaction between different water bodies. This will inform what activities we do and do not undertake, where we undertake them, and what environmental controls need to be put in place.
This data will be made available to the community whether or not we decide to continue exploration or to mine at Puhipuhi.
Input from the local community, including representatives of Ngati Hau and neighbouring hapu, will also be used to develop a set of monitoring procedures designed specifically for Puhipuhi and adjoining areas based on shared understanding of the local environment.
We will ensure that monitoring procedures meet all obligations under relevant New Zealand regulations and are aligned to Evolution’s internal standards, procedures and Protocols
Read more in our Environment Fact Sheet