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Our Approach to Tailings Management

Eldorado Gold recognizes the impacts of mine tailings and tailings facilities on the environment, local communities and other stakeholders. The Company has worked to construct and maintain facilities that mitigate risks at each stage of the mine life cycle and incorporates best available technologies and leading international standards in the design, operation and closure of its tailings facilities.

At each of Eldorado’s tailings producing mines, tailings are stored and disposed of in specially constructed facilities that are designed to mitigate risks to health, safety and the environment. Our facilities are designed and operated with consideration to local climates, including heavier than usual rainfall, and consistently monitored in order to maintain the stability of tailings materials and dam structures.

In response to recent tailings dam failures and increased stakeholder awareness regarding tailings management, including a request from the Church of England Pensions Board, Eldorado has undertaken an internal review of all its tailings facilities.

For more information on Eldorado’s tailings facilities and management please see the following documents:

Letter from the President and Chief Executive Officer
Tailings Stewardship and Facilities Overview

What are Tailings?

Tailings are a mixture of ground up rock particles and water that is left over after the economic minerals are removed from the ore. Wherever possible, we repurpose tailings materials and waste rock as backfill to stabilize our underground mining operations. Remaining tailings are then placed in a specially-designed tailings storage facility in order to protect the environment, communities and biodiversity in the area.

Tailings are classified based on their moisture content, which can range from wet to almost dry. All tailings begin wet; it is only through additional processing stages, or after many years of natural evaporation in a tailings pond, that they are dried.

Each of our mines produce different types of mine waste based on the processing methods used to extract gold and other valuable metals from surrounding ore.

Heap leaching at Kışladağ, Turkey

Heap leaching at Kışladağ, Turkey

Slurried tailings at Sigma, Lamaque, Canada

Slurried tailings at Sigma, Lamaque, Canada

Dry-stack tailings at Kokkinolakkas, Greece

Dry-stack tailings at Kokkinolakkas, Greece

Eldorado Gold Dry-Stack Tailings