Not Much Damage to Mining and Quarrying Sector


Upgrading of environmental practices and measures taken over the past four years by the Mining and Quarrying Association of Jamaica, along with the Ministry of land and Environment, specifically the Mines and Geology Division, were very helpful in minimizing damage caused by Hurricane Ivan.
“The measures included keeping drainage clear, establishing proper terraces, maintaining clear river channels and removing excess sediment from the river beds,” President of the Mining and Quarrying Association of Jamaica, Anthony Morgan, told JIS News.
He said although there was significant flooding islandwide, little was heard about rivers overflowing their banks. There was some damage to quarry plants in the form of roof loss, electrical damage and loss of cladding material, but no other real significant damage.
Mr. Morgan informed further, that with all the physical damage islandwide, a great opportunity has been provided for quarry operators to make a contribution to the rebuilding efforts using the materials that are quarried and processed.
The minerals limestone, cement, sand and gravel make up about 80 per cent of the materials used to construct roads and buildings. The Association is looking forward to working with the construction sector and the rest of the country.
Turning to the quality of the materials, Mr. Morgan said that although there would be some challenges in getting production back to pre-Hurricane Ivan levels, there was now an opportunity to produce better quality materials, which should meet local and international specifications.
“We aim to ensure that the laissez-faire approach to procuring building aggregate/material cease and that a purchasing policy be put in place that is based on product specification,” he emphasized.
The Mining and Quarrying Association of Jamaica was started four years ago and consists of approximately 120 members, who supply road and building aggregate to the construction industry in Jamaica.
There are between 120 and 150 quarries in Jamaica. The industry is regulated by the Mines and Geology Division, headed by the Commissioner of Mines.

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