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Typology for restored waste repositories in the UK

Sinnett, Danielle

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Abstract

This paper presents a new typology of waste repositories as a means of assessing the environmental services of such sites in the United Kingdom. The potential benefits provided by waste repositories are dependent on many factors including the type of waste, age of the site, restoration strategy, environmental management and proximity to settlements.
Waste repositories include landfills, mine spoils and ash wastes deposited to land. They are often perceived as derelict or degraded sites of very little value to society. However, many such sites have been transformed into valuable community assets and are increasingly being recognised as rich ecological resources.
The presence of rare and valuable metals and other elements in waste repositories means that they are being reconsidered for resource extraction. However, the technologies to achieve this are often disruptive to the landform, soil materials and vegetation on site. It is therefore essential to understand what ecological resources exist on such sites and the services they provide as a way of assessing the impact of any resource extraction activities to local communities.
The typology has been developed in two stages. The first consisted of spatial analysis using Geographical Information Systems to identify the types of habitats (e.g. nature reserves, special areas of conservation) and cultural land uses (e.g. heritage sites, attractive landscapes) associated with different waste repositories and their proximity to settlements. The second supplemented the spatial data with information from the policy and academic literature to understand the restoration activities likely to be have been undertaken on waste repositories of different ages. This resulting typology will allow those seeking to extract resources from such sites to assess the potential impacts to ecological and cultural resources. The typology has been developed through the NERC/ESRC-funded ‘INSPIRE: IN Situ Processes In Resource Extraction from waste repositories’ project (Grant Reference NE/L013916/1).

Citation

Sinnett, D. (2016, August). Typology for restored waste repositories in the UK. Poster presented at 5th International EcoSummit: Ecological Sustainability Engineering Change

Presentation Conference Type Poster
Conference Name 5th International EcoSummit: Ecological Sustainability Engineering Change
Start Date Aug 29, 2016
End Date Sep 1, 2016
Acceptance Date Mar 31, 2016
Publication Date Jan 1, 2016
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Keywords waste repositories, natural regeneration, managed restoration
Additional Information Title of Conference or Conference Proceedings : 5th International EcoSummit: Ecological Sustainability Engineering Change

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