Through its subsidiary Talon Nickel, Talon Metals (TSX: TLO) and EnviCore are teaming up to study EnviCore’s technology to avoid tailings disposal at mine sites. Instead of disposal, the technology exists to turn tails into value-added products for the building, construction, and infrastructure industries. The new products would replace primary raw materials in cement and concrete production that creates significant carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions during manufacture.
Talon is the majority owner and operator of the high-grade Tamarack nickel project in Minnesota. By repurposing the tailings, the high cost of management systems is avoided and valuable secondary products created. That strategy gives rise to the “full value mining” approach and leads to more sustainable materials production.
"While these are lab scale studies, it's very exciting to challenge conventional thinking about waste,” said Talon CEO Henri van Rooyen. “The work we are doing with EnviCore has the potential to avoid waste in the first place. As a bonus, these materials may reduce the carbon footprint of cement and concrete. If aspects of the ore other than the highly valuable nickel and copper can replace other materials that society needs, then we are ensuring that we make full use of the natural resources that society allows us to extract."
EnviCore and Talon are testing samples from the Tamarack nickel-copper tailings for their suitability as supplementary cementation material. The supplemental materials that replace primary materials such as Portland cement will help decarbonize the cement industry. If scale-up of the tests successfully produces a commercial product, it will need to be tested in the state and federal permitting process.
More information about the Tamarack nickel-copper project is posted on www.TalonMetals.com.