Sustainability assessment of an open-pit mine using a new model developed based on Folchi approach

User Rating:  / 1


Esmaeil Pouresmaeili,, Department of Mining and Geology, Qaemshahr Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qaemshahr, Iran

Arash Ebrahimabadi,, Department of Petroleum, Mining and Material Engineering, Central Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Hadi Hamidian,, Department of Mining and Geology, Qaemshahr Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qaemshahr, Iran

повний текст / full article

Naukovyi Visnyk Natsionalnoho Hirnychoho Universytetu. 2021, (6): 141 - 147


Surface mining is one of the main activities that affect the environment, economy and society in its surrounding region. Therefore, it is important to investigate the results of this activity in terms of sustainability assessment. Measuring sustainability of a mine requires a methodology which covers all aspects of mining sustainability.The purpose of the article is to assess the sustainability of career development and determine which components require modification and more consideration.

Many researchers have tried to develop certain frameworks to measure sustainable score of mining activities, while some of them are complicated and the rest of them do not cover all aspects of sustainability. In this research work, in order to evaluate the sustainability of an open-pit mine, Folchi method based on Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) approach was used. With this respect, primarily, influential factors and the impact of each influential factor on the sustainable component of an open-pit mine were investigated.

In this regard, Anguran lead and zinc open-pit mine was chosen as a case study. A correlation matrix of the weighted impact of each influential factor on each environmental component was built up based on experts opinion. Afterwards, the magnitude of the influential factors and the impact of each influential factor on the sustainable component of Anguran mine were calculated.

The results obtained using the Folchi method demonstrated that human health and safety, water quality, air quality, flora and fauna, as well as the surface have become decisive factors in the sustainability of Anguran open-pit mine.

Practical value.
Finally, it can be concluded that Anguran quarry is characterized by a significant degree of resilience due to the low level of influence of the influential factors, and there is no need to modify any influential factors.

sustainability, sustainable development, Folchi method, lead and zinc mine, Anguran


1. Chakraborty, M., Ahmad, M., Singh, R., Pal, D., Bandopadhyay,C., & Chaulya, S. (2002). Determination of the emission rate from various opencast mining operations. Environmental Modelling & Software, 17(5), 467-480.

2. Hansen, Y., Broadhurst, J. L., & Petrie, J. G. (2008). Modelling leachate generation and mobility from copper sulphide tailings An integrated approach to impact assessment. Minerals Engineering, 21(4), 288-301.

3. Ekrami, E., Pouresmaieli, M., Shariati, P., & Mahmoudifard, M. (2021). A review on designing biosensors for the detection of trace metals. Applied Geochemistry, (127), 104902.

4. Folchi, R. (2003). Environmental impact statement for mining with explosives: a quantitative method. Proceedings of the 29th annual conference on explosives and blasting technique, 285-296. Retrieved from

5. Ebrahimabadi, A., Pouresmaieli, M., Afradi, A., Pouresmaeili, E., & Nouri, S. (2018). Comparing Two Methods of PROMETHEE and Fuzzy TOPSIS in Selecting the Best Plant Species for the Reclamation of Sarcheshmeh Copper Mine. Asian Journal of Water, Environment and Pollution, 15(2), 141-152.

6. Amirshenava, S., & Osanloo, M. (2019). A hybrid semi-quantitative approach for impact assessment of mining activities on sustainable development indexes. Journal of Cleaner Production, (218), 823-834.

7. Pouresmaieli, M., & Osanloo, M. (2019). A Valuation Approach to Investigate the Sustainability of Sorkhe-Dizaj Iron Ore Mine of Iran. Springer Series in Geomechanics and Geoengineering, 431-446.

8. Laurence, D. (2011). Establishing a sustainable mining operation: an overview. Journal of Cleaner Production, 19(2-3), 278-284.

9. Rahmanpour, M., & Osanloo, M. (2017). A decision support system for determination of a sustainable pit limit. Journal of Cleaner Production, (141), 1249-1258.

10. Pouresmaieli, M., & Osanloo, M. (2019). Establishing a Model to Reduce the Risk of Premature Mine Closure. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, (362), 012005.

11. Monjezi, M., Shahriar, K., Dehghani, H., & Namin, F.S. (2009). Environmental impact assessment of open pit mining in Iran. Environmental geology, 58(1), 205-216.

12. Phillips, J. (2012). Using a mathematical model to assess the sustainability of proposed bauxite mining in Andhra Pradesh, India from a quantitative-based environmental impact assessment. Environmental Earth Sciences, 67(6), 1587-1603.

13. Phillips, J. (2013). The application of a mathematical model of sustainability to the results of a semi-quantitative Environmental Impact Assessment of two iron ore opencast mines in Iran. Applied Mathematical Modelling, 37(14-15), 7839-7854.

14. Goodfellow, R.C., & Dimitrakopoulos, R. (2016). Global optimization of open pit mining complexes with uncertainty. Applied Soft Computing, (40), 292-304.

15. Ranjan, V., Sen, P., Kumar, D., & Saraswat, A. (2016). Enhancement of mechanical stability of waste dump slope through establishing vegetation in a surface iron ore mine. Environmental Earth Sciences, 76(1).

16. Antoniadis, V., Shaheen, S. M., Boersch, J., Frohne, T., Du Laing, G., & Rinklebe, J. (2017). Bioavailability and risk assessment of potentially toxic elements in garden edible vegetables and soils around a highly contaminated former mining area in Germany. Journal of Environmental Management, (186), 192-200.

17. Birch, C. (2017). Optimization of cut-off grades considering grade uncertainty in narrow, tabular gold deposits. Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, 117(2), 149-156.

18. Bouchard, J., Sbarbaro, D., & Desbiens, A. (2017). Plant Automation for Energy-Efficient Mineral Processing. Green Energy and Technology, 233-250.

19. Wright, M., Tartari, V., Huang, K.G., Di Lorenzo, F., & Bercovitz, J. (2017). Knowledge Worker Mobility in Context: Pushing the Boundaries of Theory and Methods. Journal of Management Studies, 55(1), 1-26.

20. Saffari, A., Ataei, M., Sereshki, F., & Naderi, M. (2017). Environmental impact assessment (EIA) by using the Fuzzy Delphi Folchi (FDF) method (case study: Shahrood cement plant, Iran). Environment, Development and Sustainability, 21(2), 817-860.

21. Cuervo, V., Burge, L., Beaugrand, H., Hendershot, M., & Evans,S.G. (2017). Downstream Geomorphic Response of the 2014 Mount Polley Tailings Dam Failure, British Columbia. Advancing Culture of Living with Landslides, 281-289.

22. Martn-Crespo, T., Gmez-Ortiz, D., Martn-Velzquez, S., Martnez-Pagn, P., De Ignacio, C., Lillo, J., & Faz, . (2018). Geoenvironmental characterization of unstable abandoned mine tailings combining geophysical and geochemical methods (Cartagena-La Union district, Spain). Engineering Geology, (232), 135-146.

23. Sharafi, A., Doulati Ardejani, F., Rezaei, B., & Sargheini, J. (2018). Environmental geochemistry of near-neutral waters and mineralogy of zinc and lead at the Angouran non-sulphide zinc mine, NW Iran. Journal of Geochemical Exploration, (186), 77-93.

24. Zhang, Y., Lu, W., & Yang, Q. (2014). The impacts of mining exploitation on the environment in the Changchun-Jilin-Tumen economic area, Northeast China. Natural Hazards, 76(2), 1019-1038. .

25. Statistics Canada,Labor Force Survey; and ISED calculations. (n.d.). Retrieved from



This Month
All days

Guest Book

If you have questions, comments or suggestions, you can write them in our "Guest Book"

Registration data

ISSN (print) 2071-2227,
ISSN (online) 2223-2362.
Journal was registered by Ministry of Justice of Ukraine.
Registration number КВ No.17742-6592PR dated April 27, 2011.


D.Yavornytskyi ave.,19, pavilion 3, room 24-а, Dnipro, 49005
Tel.: +38 (056) 746 32 79.
e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
You are here: Home Home EngCat Archive 2021 Content №6 2021 Sustainability assessment of an open-pit mine using a new model developed based on Folchi approach