As part of Oyu Tolgoi’s sustainable land management policy, the mine’s closure and rehabilitation plans have been developed in accordance with Mongolian laws and standards. This keeps land degradation to a minimum.
Land Disturbance Management
In order to ensure minimal land disturbance, Oyu Tolgoi requires an environmental inspection and assessment before any land disturbance occurs. A permit for work is only approved after protective actions identified in the assessment are completed. This process eliminates or minimizes potential impact on local water, biodiversity, the community, cultural heritage, and many other areas. It also ensures compliance with environmental and other relevant legislation. This procedure also applies to Oyu Tolgoi sponsored projects.
The Oyu Tolgoi topsoil management plan is one of the most important elements in rehabilitating land affected by the mine’s operations and infrastructure development, helping to restore vegetation and biodiversity.
Before the start of any land disturbance activity, Oyu Tolgoi strips and stores the topsoil so it can be used to rehabilitate the land after the work is complete.
Areas that were disturbed during exploration, development and operations are rehabilitated during and after the project, including through the development of a mine closure plan at the start of the construction phase. Making disturbed areas safe for people, animals, and the environment is one of the main reasons for proper rehabilitation. To make an area safe, technical rehabilitation has to be completed to high standards. Oyu Tolgoi has a dedicated team to work with contractors to monitor rehabilitation.
Oyu Tolgoi continued its comprehensive environmental monitoring program and maintained compliance with key environmental programs. In 2020, planned biological rehabilitation was completed on 19 hectares of land associated with off-site construction works such as road construction and including the planting of almost 26,000 individual saplings from 14 species grown by the Native Plant Propagation Centre (NPPC) in Khanbogd. For the first time since operations began, over 52 hectares of biologically rehabilitated land were handed back to local government.
Technical rehabilitation was completed on an additional 15.7 hectares which were handed back to local government along with 12.4 hectares of previously technically rehabilitated land.
Oyu Tolgoi LLC supports landscaping and greening of Khanbogd and has donated over 11,700 individual saplings to the local community and neighbouring soums and aimags.
Oyu Tolgoi works with the local community toward the landscaping and greening of Khanbogd.