End Pit Lakes Guidance Document 2012

James Hrynyshyn
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End pit lakes (EPLs) have been proposed as permanent features of the final reclaimed landscape in the mineable oil sands region. No oil sands end pit lake currently exists, but about 30 are proposed. This document presents the scientific and engineering expertise to guide all reclamation activities associated with EPL design and construction. It provides practical technical guidance and supporting tools to be used by industry, specifically an interdisciplinary team of operational managers, mine planners, landform engineers and designers. It is also intended to be used as a primary reference by government regulators charged with overseeing the oil sands and designers of research and monitoring programs. It should be used in conjunction with other guidance documents involving oil sands reclamation. CEMA has produced similar guidance documents for wetlands, soils, revegetation, and riparian areas.
The objectives of EPLs as determined by stakeholders, operators, and government are covered in Chapter 2 and addressed as design criteria in Chapter 8. The experiences of coal, quarry, and metal mines with pit lakes, which operators and government regulators believe can be adapted to the oil sands to meet those objectives, are explored in Chapter 3. The chemistry, 
geography, and ecology that will determine the basic parameters and the future trajectory of 
each EPL can be found in Chapters 4, 5, and 6. Designers can find the full 100-year timeline 
and drivers for a typical EPL project in Chapter 7. Construction and operation are detailed in 
Chapter 9. When combined with good design and modelling, this Guide should provide enough information to create a conceptual-level EPL design, for collective management in the future.