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Our Environmental monitoring team - Gone fishing!

Our Environmental sampling team has spent time on the water to monitor the health and integrity of local waterways and catchments, and to monitor fish health and diversity.

As part of Glencore’s Mount Isa Mines’ annual Receiving Environment Monitoring Program (REMP), our Environment team survey local ecosystems to assess potential impacts to the environment from mining activities, or natural changes such as seasonal variability or rainfall.

In the recent REMP sampling, our team checked fish health and assessed their numbers through electrofishing, which is a common and effective way to capture fish without causing them harm.

Our team monitoring and assessing fish health with a specimen caught during sampling. No fish were harmed during this process.

Electrofishing uses either alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC) to alter the behaviour of fish or to stun them so they can be safely caught with a net and pulled into the boat. They are then measured and assessed for indicators of fish health before being returned to the water to swim off naturally.

Guidelines for REMP studies place strict regulations around the monitoring of our receiving environment. This includes routine inspections at prescribed reference and compliance sites to ensure we have appropriate data on how the environment is performing.

Glencore’s Mount Isa Mines Environmental Advisor, Andrew Koerber, says the health of our receiving environment is evaluated by comparing the results of current sampling events to those from previous years.

“Considerable focus is given to any notable change in the abundance, health and diversity of fish and macroinvertebrates, water quality and stream sediment,” says Andrew.

The Environment team electrofishing at the Junction leading into Lake Moondarra.

“Our sub-tropical weather patterns and the ephemeral nature of our waterways gives the Mount Isa region unique aquatic freshwater ecosystems.”

“The fish in these waterways have adapted to these extreme conditions, and our fish survey affirms this.”

“Some interesting finds in our sampling included a 1.2 metre barramundi found at Lake Moondarra, archer fish, sooty grunters, barred grunters, spangled and glass perch, two species of sleepy cod, catfish and eel tailed catfish in some of the smaller creek systems,” Andrew says.

Our Environmental sampling team monitors the health and integrity of local waterways to assess fish health and abundance.
Sampling is carried out through electrofishing, which is a common and effective way to capture fish, without causing them harm.

The REMP is a requirement under the Environmental Protection Act (1994) and an important condition in the Environmental Authorities (EAs) that govern our operations in north-west Queensland.

Receiving environments are the ecosystems that could potentially be impacted by mining activities, or natural changes such as seasonal variability of rainfall.

Guidelines for REMP studies place strict regulations around monitoring our receiving environment which includes routine inspections at prescribed reference and compliance sites to ensure we have appropriate data on how the environment is performing.