The Impact of Mine Tailings on the Witwatersrand and the Surrounding Water Bodies in Gauteng Province, South Africa

Njinga, Raymond; Tshivhase, Victor
November 2017
Mine Water & the Environment;Nov2017, Vol. 36 Issue 4, p638
Academic Journal
The gross alpha and beta activity in treated water from one of the numerous gold mines in Gauteng province averaged 1.15 ± 0.13 and 0.87 ± 0.11 Bq L, respectively. The average readings of the fissure water from the same mine were 0.56 ± 0.10 and 0.52 ± 0.11 Bq L, respectively. Water samples collected at the foot of the Princess gold mine tailings dump in Gauteng province and from downstream, before the drainage joins other water sources, also had high average gross alpha and beta activity and high average concentrations of radionuclides. The hazard quotient value evaluated, based on U of the water sample types in these vicinities, was far above one, indicating that it may pose serious health risks to the inhabitants.


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