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Trip nr 1

 

Restoration of oil-shale mines – before, now and after

 

Kaevanduskäik.jpg
Estonian deepest experience  -
underground mining gear
Photo: kaevanduspark.ee 

Tour guides:

 

   Ahto Kangur, Estonian University of Life Sciences


   Diana Laarmann,
Estonian University of Life Sciences


   Heikki Bauert, Tallinn University of Technology

 

 

A long but rewarding travel from Tartu to the North-East of Estonia and back will provide an opportunity to see a full variety of forest landscapes and cultural-historical sites.

  

Mining front on the open-pit oil-shale mine. Pre-mining condition can be seen above the mining front. Photo taken in early 1980es by Elmar Kaar
Mining front on the open-pit oil-shale mine. Pre-mining condition can be seen above the mining front. Photo taken in early 1980es by Elmar Kaar

The visit to mining areas will present to participants the core of the past and current oil-shale mining processes, and focuses on the restoration activities and treatments following almost a 40-year afforestation on chronosequence plots.

 

This one-day excursion will provide a brief introduction to oil-shale and its current mining in the Põhja-Kiviõli kukersite open-pit mine.

 

It will be followed by the visit to Kohtla Mining Park, where both open and underground mining history is explained.

 

The introductory part to mining is finished with the visit to the reopened mining gear for feeling the special atmosphere of former times and having miners’ lunch - more information about this you can find at http://kaevanduspark.ee/eng/.

 

Third visit will take us to the exhausted mining site in Aidu quarry, where the mine has been closed and the landscape is being restored. We will visit the site where a large-scale long-term monitoring and evaluation study of an afforested oil-shale quarry takes place.

 

Total length of the bus trip is 310 km.

 

Map: http://goo.gl/maps/XrTja

 

Post-mining condition in the abandoned quarry:  waste-heaps were levelled in 2011. Photo: Diana Laarmann
Post-mining condition in the abandoned quarry:  waste-heaps were levelled in 2011
Photo: Diana Laarmann
The changed water regime after closure of active mining in Aidu quarry. Photo: Diana Laarmann.
The changed water regime after closure
of active mining in Aidu quarry 
Photo: Diana Laarmann
Natural regeneration of silver birch (Betula pendula Roth.) on the levelled waste-heaps. Photo: Diana Laarmann.
Natural regeneration of silver birch (Betula pendula Roth.) on the levelled waste-heaps
Photo: Diana Laarmann