What Happens To Pits and Quarries After Use?

Pits and quarries are necessary for the infrastructure of our societies. Roads, buildings, bridges, and homes are all reliant on the aggregates mined from these operations. What most people don’t realize is that quarries are temporary enterprises that are eventually rehabilitated to a natural state. You might even live near an exhausted quarry and not know it, and that’s the point. When all the aggregate equipment moves on to their next project, the land is repurposed for the benefit of our societies.

Planning A Quarry

Many countries and governments have strict guidelines when it comes to planning a new quarry. For example, to get a license for aggregate mining in Ontario, a site plan (that includes a rehabilitation strategy) must be approved before any digging takes place. Rehabilitating a pit or quarry is the process of restoring the land to its original state or different planned end use.

Quarries are almost always located near populated areas. The greater the distance between the final end user of an aggregate product and the source quarry, the greater a project’s economic, environmental, and social costs. Increasing distances means burning more fossil fuels and increased wear and tear on roadways.

What Are Quarries Turned Into?

Once the aggregate equipment has packed up, the quarry is ready for rehabilitation. Pits and quarries can be turned into wetlands, wildlife habitats, golf courses, parks, conservation lands, housing developments, forests, and even farms. Take a look at these two pictures and try to figure out which one used to be a quarry.

“Another view from above” by Craig Nagy is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Could you figure it out? Well, they both used to be quarries. Picture #1 is Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario and picture #2 is Queen Elizabeth Park in Vancouver. There is very little chance that anyone would recognize that these sites were once quarries where sand, stone, and gravel were harvested.

These are just two examples of successful rehabilitation programs in Canada, but these restorations take place globally as well.
The worksites that provide us with the building blocks of our society can often be turned into something even more beneficial when production has ceased. Carminex is proud to supply aggregate equipment to responsible quarry projects all over the globe. To get in contact with Carminex and our team of aggregate specialists, give us a call at 1.450.922.0900.