Tailings disposal pipeline intact
Post Courier | July 21,2016
The deep sea tailings placement pipes (DSTP) which Ramu NiCo Management uses at Basamuk Bay in Rai Coast, Madang Province is in good condition according to inspections. The visual images of the placement pipes were captured by a remote operating vehicle (RVO) during a recent inspection. A report by Ramu NiCo’s Health Safety and Environment Department following the ROV inspection stated that there was no sign of structural disintegration such as leakage of tailings observed. As a result the Deep Sea Tailings Placement (DSTP) pipeline maintained its design integrity for safe disposal of tailings. The inspection and diving was conducted on the first week of June by Australian ROV specialists and RNML’s Corporate Environment personnel with assistance from Basamuk based Environment Officers. According to the report visual images also showed marine ecology along the pipeline transects were unaffected. Marine life was abundant and signs of stress not notable. The ROV inspection on RNML’s DSTP submarine pipeline is a mandatory or is an obligatory activity stipulated in the company’s operational environmental management plan (OEMP) carried out annually with a specific purpose to check the integrity of the pipeline. The inspection involves driving a ROV along the entire length of DSTP pipeline which captures a visual of the route with high powered cameras and displayed on LCD screen installed on-board a working vessel or boat and observatory inspections are done on the display. DSTP inspection for this year was slightly altered to the extent of involving divers to clean the seawater intake pipeline which is only 20m below sea level. The cleaning was done by scuba divers hired from Madang Resort’s Dive Shop to ensure that correct volume of seawater is taken into the mixing tank to mix with tailing before being discharged via the DSTP.