DEVELOPMENT OF SOLID MINERALS IN AN ENVIRONMENTALLY AND SOCIALLY SUSTAINABLE MANNER
In the development of solid mineral in any nation, the most important issue of noteworthy is that whereas mineral industries appreciate that they mine and process mineral to maintain and advance standard of living of humanity, they must do so in a manner that protects the earth and its environs so that the generations unborn are not adversely impacted and can enjoy its bounties. However, this paper explores solid mineral mining in the perspective of sustainable development or sustainability, and provides some guiding principle for mining industries wanting to operate more sustainably. Social and environmental issues are highlighted. Some sustainable practices for solid mineral development were brought to light which includes sustainable mining practices (safety, economy, resource efficiency, environment, community). Others sustainable practices discussed comprise environmentally sustainable mining, which recommended reduction in both the input (water, energy, land disruption) and output (waste, acid rock drainage) flow into mining system; and framework for responsible/ sustainable solid mineral development. Now that Nigerian government has recently revisited solid mineral roadmap with the view of license issuance to prospective miners, it will become increasingly important that mines should start pursuing socioeconomic and environmental issues with improved strategy that involves sustainable development into mode of operations in the companies.