Invited by Prof. XIAO Tangfu, Prof. Margarete Kalin from Queen’s University, Canada, and Prof. Wolfgang Sand from University of Duisburg-Essen (UDE, Germany) visited the State Key Laboratory of Environmental Geochemistry (SKLEG) of IGCAS on Nov. 30th 2012.
Besides delivering illuminating presentation respectively, Prof. Margarete Kalin and Prof. Wolfgang Sand also had thorough discussions with the faculty and students of SKLEG.
Prof. XIAO Tangfu hosting the seminar
Prof. Margarete Kalin giving the presentation
Prof. Margarete Kalin presented the lecture entitled “Sustainable Recommissioning with Ecological Engineering”. She introduced microbiological solutions for mine waste such as Acid Reduction Using Microbe (ARUM) dealing with acid waste, Biological Polishing System for heavy metal, and ecological recipients for cleaning water. In addition, she underlined that the most significant advantage of ecological engineering over traditional approach lies in the fact that the former applies “natural process” instead of human interruption and then provides a more sustainable way to manage the mine waste. She also showed several implementation cases of her technology, especially “Dapo” case located in Huaxi District, Guiyang.
Prof. Wolfgang Sand in his presentation
Prof. Wolfgang Sand gave a talk on “The role of extracellular polymeric substance (EPS) in bioleaching: attachment and degradation of metal sulfides” and introduced the biofilm using EPS for bioleaching of metallic sulfide in pyrite. Comparing the colonization of different bacteria communities, Prof. Wolfgang Sand illustrated the correlative relationship between attachment rate of bacteria and mineral dissolution. His study showed that the synergistic effect of different bacterial communities is greater than the sum of individual effects.
Prof. Margarete Kalin is also the president of Boojum Research Inc. which aims to develop and implement ecologically-based, self-sustaining decommissioning systems for mine waste management areas. She was a Distinguished Lecturer for the Canadian Institute of Mining. Presently, she is a Qualified Environmental Professional (QEP) with the Institute of Environmental Practice and Senior Ecologist with the American Ecological Society.
As known to all, development of mineral resources contributes significantly to national economic success. However, the overexploitation of mineral resources tremendously damages the ecological environment of mining area. Therefore, ecological engineering, especially biofilm technique has enormous potential to be employed in managing mine waste generation and restoring ecosystems damaged by mining.
(By NIE Yang)