Hydrogeological, Hydrological Study & Exploration Drilling Environmental Management Plan
Client: Evolution Mining Pty NZ
A gold and silver prospect at Puhipuhi, approximately 30 km north of Whangarei, is currently under exploration. The mineral target is at depths of between 200 – 500 metres underground and requires drilling to progress the economic viability assessment. Before commencing drilling, Evolution Mining Pty Ltd engaged PDP to complete a range of detailed environmental baseline studies, including; groundwater and surface water flow and quality, ecology, sediment, air quality and noise, within and around the exploration tenement. The aims of the studies were to generate an integrated understanding of the environment, understand potential environmental risks associated with planned exploration activities, and to identify the most appropriate methods to eliminate potential effects and manage any residual effects.
PDP’s groundwater and surface water team completed a key study on the hydrological and hydrogeological regime. The study included collection of water flow and quality data from existing privately owned water supply bores and springs. Key hydrological features both within the tenement area as well as in the downstream receiving environment were identified. In addition the surface water flow was characterised through an evaluation of seasonal and annual flow patterns in both the local streams and downstream rivers.
A robust conceptual model was developed and used to inform the public consultation process and the preparation of exploration drilling management plans for the greater project. The project was completed under tight timeframes and had a high public profile. Drilling commenced in 2016, and PDP’s environmental management plans and recommendations have been implemented as recommended. The drilling programme was completed with no environmental incidents.
- Liaison with local Iwi and private water supply bore owners
- Groundwater flow and water quality testing, including stygofauna sampling
- Rainfall and surface water analyses
- Conceptual model development and presentation of findings to public consultation groups
- Key groundwater risk management inputs to exploration drilling planning
- Training client staff to perform on going monitoring
Conceptual model diagram developed during the groundwater study. The diagram was also used during the community and Iwi consultation.
Groundwater quality sampling and Stygofauna collection during the groundwater baseline study.
One of the river flow gauging and sampling locations within the region.