Time tends to claw back the pursuits of people, eventually weathering and ageing our infrastructure. Time is however our friend when it comes to mine rehabilitation. Fresh mine voids and spoil dumps are ugly, however, it would be a mistake to assume that what you see today is what it will look like in 100 years. The forces of nature are powerful when it comes to reclaiming a mine site back to nature. I tour a lot of mine sites and much of the time I can’t tell which areas of scrub are rehabilitated spoil and which areas have not been mined.
As an example, Lady Elliot Island was completely stripped during phosphate mining in the 1860’s. You can’t tell today and it is now an ecotourism resort.
Photo credit: www.ladyelliot.com.au