The Difpolmine project

During recent centuries, Europe has been the site of an intense production and transformation of ores and metals. These activities have produced a large amount of pollutants caused by the transport and the storage of waste or from the various spills into the environment, sometimes from extensive areas. The erosion of the contaminated soils and the waste has generated large flows of heavy metals or metalloids in the nearby rivers.

One part of this pollution can be treated by traditional methods (excavation, confinement, solidification, ?), in particular for the highly concentrated sources of pollutants. However residual or diffused pollution will remain in the soil around these industrial areas and it will be necessary to find other solutions to minimise the impact.

The main purpose of the project is to demonstrate that a suitable approach to the management of polluted runoff water and phytostabilisation of the soil can reduce the transfer of pollution to surface water on old mining sites. This approach aims to restore the water to good quality and avoid the accumulation of polluted sediments.

It also aims to control the cost of the necessary equipment by optimising the choice of investments and their conditions of use.

ADEME is associated with IRH Environment (France), Limburg Universitair Centrum (Belgium) and the University of Technology and Economics of Budapest (Hungary).