Exploitation and Environmental Reclamation of a limestone conglomerate deposit

Client: Quarrying and concrete production company
Location: Battipaglia- Campania (Italy)
Date: 2006

The project aimed at the reclamation of an hill slope subjected to the extraction of limestone, through the morphological reshaping of the slope and the optimization of limestone conglomerate deposit’s exploitation. Nearby the site there are a cemetery and a motorway, and an industrial district is close by.


Project Goals

  • Ensure continuity of mineral production of limestone;
  • Minimize the interference of quarrying with the surroundings;
  • Reclaim the site as olive tree grove and expansion of the existing industrial district.

Activities performed

  1. Regulatory and cartographic framework analysis;
  2. Assessment of alternative exploitation and reclamation solutions;
  3. Tasks scheduling and resource management;
  4. Rainwater runoff regulation;
  5. Economic and financial investment analysis;
  6. Environmental impact Assessment.

Technical data

Area of intervention: 372.000 m²
Cultivation method: Benches
Digging technique: Backhoe excavator

Mucking technique: Backhoe excavator
Transportation technique: Dumper
Reclamation plan: Agricultural (olive tree grove) and industrial

Technical outcomes

Total volume of limestone extracted: 10.500.000 m³
Average production: 700.000 m³/year

Duration: 15 years

Economical and financial outcomes

Investments: 6.950.000 €
Revenues: 123.000.000 €
Net Present Value of revenues: 79.500.000 € (discount rate 6%)
Investment Return Rate; 93,4%
Break Even Point: 29.000 m³
Payback Period: 1,2 years

Environmental Impact Assessment

Positive aspects of the intervention in terms of Environmental Impacts:

  1. the exploitation method adopted (descending benches) allows for the reclamation project to be realized together with the extraction project;
  2. the excavation face masking effect, obtained by realizing a “rock-wall”, due to excavation progress parallel to final bench profile;
  3. the reclamation project, that restores the olive trees grove on the hill slope and integrates with the industrial district nearby;
  4. the exploitation of the limestone conglomerate deposit, avoiding delocalisation and favoring occupation and local economy;
  5. the morphological reclamation of the whole hill slope, including portions outside the current exploitation area.

The suggested solution was compared to the current status of the site (non intervention alternative) using AEVIA method. The Global Impact index for the suggested solution is I=-530.
The main “negative” impacts are related to excavation (I1=824), to the realization of ramps and operating areas (I2=343) and to transport (I5=411), that are compensated by the “positive” effects coming from the reclamation project (I7=-1107), from profitability of the intervention (I8=-451) and investments (I10=-413).


3D model rendering – Current site morphology


3D model rendering – Project morphology