GISTM – The impact on operations

The Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management (GISTM) require governance, management and operations to be carried out at a level that surpasses the current industry practice . While this change in current practice presents many challenges, it also offers opportunities and promotes improvements and innovation in tailings management. Sharing real examples of the impact of the GISTM on operations and how these impacts lead to improved tailings management practices is vital to improving tailings dam safety in Australia and globally.

Managing changes and deviations in operations

Unexpected changes in the operational context and environment of a TSF are commonplace and present the greatest opportunity for new or increased risks to be introduced to and by TSFs. Effective change and deviation management is required to identify, analyse, and manage risks appropriately. Reflection on change and deviation management case studies is very important as it allows sharing of lessons learned, benefiting other operations and the whole industry.

Training for the next generation

Changing practices and increased expectations for tailings management and operation of TSFs have resulted in a greater demand for appropriately qualified and experienced operators and site engineers. However, estimates have shown that the demand for trained personnel in coming years far exceeds the number of people that institutions can train using conventional methods. The tension between this ability to supply and the demand for adequately qualified and skilled operational personnel will need to be addressed with new and innovative training methods with engagement at all levels of TSF operation.