The prime goal of the Wismut environmental remediation (ER) project follows from the legal requirement to abate health risks, mitigate existing environmental damages and prevent future hazards.
The extent of remedial measures is derived by investigation of the object-specific remediation feasibility rather than by application of uniform standards. The ER workflow, unlike common civil engineering projects that are a linear succession of tasks, is an iterative process. Within the ER workflow, Conceptual Site Models (CSM) guide the optimization of designs and investigations while both operational works and environmental base line are monitored. The acquired data are collected and analyzed on a corporate wide level to provide decision-making support for senior management.
In the present, advanced stage of the Wismut remediation the reutilization of the reclaimed areas and objects is receiving an increased attention. There are no legal restrictions on utilization of areas, which received a complete clean up. Utilization of areas, waste rock piles and tailings ponds reclaimed for restricted use allows only settlement of industry and trades or forestation, however, exemptions are possible if the responsibility for long term monitoring and maintenance are satisfactorily ensured. A mutually beneficial integration of reclamation plans with the communal/regional development has been successfully practiced in two former mining towns, the first leading to rebirth of the health spa in Schlema and the second helping the preparation of the Federal Garden and Landscape Exhibition in 2007 (BUGA 2007) hosted by the towns of Ronneburg and Gera.