Consequence assessment of potential tailings storage facility failures within the Canadian context

Recent catastrophic tailings storage facility (TSF) failures have resulted in immense societal, environmental and economic losses. Currently, research on TSF risk is primarily focused on the technical reasons for failure or post-failure environmental damages. Furthermore, limited research explores the financial, environmental and social consequences of potential TSF failure within potential tailings inundation zones. This project works to quantify and communicate the potential consequences of Canadian tailings storage facility failures to institutional investors. There is a pressing and urgent need to develop mining project assessment tools to understand and communicate the consequences of potential TSF failures to people, infrastructure, and the environment. This research will provide Resourceful Paths with tools and clearer justification for mining companies to commit to safer choices for alternative tailings disposal strategies. Additionally, this project will equip mining investors and stakeholders with much-needed decision-making information to improve the management and mitigation of TSF risk and act to spread best practice across the sector.

Faculty Supervisor:

Nadja Kunz


Sally Innis


Resourceful Paths Consulting




Professional, scientific and technical services


University of British Columbia



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