Recycling and reuse in aid of a circular economy


More than 40 000 tonnes of non-mineral waste from our operations is recycled each year. The emphasis is on promoting offsite recycling of scrap metal, plastics and used oil.

At Impala Springs, a local company is appointed to sort the non-mineral waste generated at the salvage yard. The proceeds from waste sales are reinvested in recycling initiatives at the operation.

Our processing operations capture and screen woodchips from timber support poles that enter the plant with the underground ore. These woodchips are used for composting as part of the concurrent rehabilitation efforts of the tailings dam side slopes.

Marula’s oil drums from the mine are collected by a local community joint venture company, refurbished offsite and sold back to Sasol for reuse.

In reducing hazardous waste sent to landfill, Zimplats continues to reduce biodegradable waste (contaminated soil) generated from all its operations through vermicomposting. Marula has established a soil bioremediation facility and trained a local contractor who ensures that all contaminated soil is remediated onsite.

In South Africa, the management and disposal of waste tyres forms part of our tyre supply contract. The contractor stockpiles the waste tyres from our operations offsite at their branches which are registered with the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF) as collection points. The tyres are then collected by an authorised micro-collector. Implats, through our participation at the Minerals Council, will continue to support the government’s efforts to finalise a new industry waste management plan for tyres. Zimplats is exploring options for reusing or recycling waste scrap tyres.

At Impala Canada, various hazardous waste streams are taken offsite and recycled.

Promoting community awareness

Our operations engage with their host communities to promote an anti-littering culture and responsible waste disposal. Since 2010, Impala Rustenburg has been supporting the Royal Bafokeng’s domestic waste collection programme. This programme encourages people in surrounding villages to dispose of their general waste in the provided waste bins, rather than burning it, which causes air pollution. Waste is collected from these villages by local waste contractors and disposed of at the Impala landfill site. No disposal charge is levied on this waste.

In Zimbabwe, our operation participated in a national clean-up campaign in Selous as part of the country’s 41st independence celebrations. The Company donated brooms, bins and other cleaning materials to the local district council and was commended by the Minister of Environment and Tourism for its efforts towards ensuring a litter-free society. Zimbabwe has three functioning landfill sites. Zimplats is in the process of developing a landfill for Mhondoro Ngezi Rural District Council where the majority of our employees live.

Marula has implemented a series of initiatives to promote responsible waste practices in its local community, in turn supporting local employment and creating a circular economy. The operation placed two waste skips in its local community area and installed waste bins, along the mine access road and community area, to mitigate littering. Marula appointed a local youth-owned company to collect the waste from the skips and bins, as well as litter, weekly.