Next week the representative of the Spanish mine Mibasa will come to the Netherlands. A good reason to tell a little more about this quarry of our olivine-rich stones.

Origin Olivine

The quarry is located in the northwest of Spain, in the Galicia region. The Mibasa company was founded in 1985 and supplies, among other things, ballast to the Spanish railways (ADIF) and olivine sand to the sandblasting industry. The olivine-containing rock has been used for this because it does not contain quartz dust that can cause lung fibrosis / black lungs.

Spanish quarry of olivine rock

It is a mine where you can wash and break the rock on site. It is sieved in different grades and then transported.
The company is ISO 9001 certified. They have both ISO 14001 and EMAS certification for environmental management. In order to meet the high quality requirements , the company has its own laboratory.

Mine recovery

What we like to mention is that at Mibasa they started to restore excavated areas from 1994. They do this by hydraulic seeding and replanting with native trees.

Replanting layer in quarry

Efficiency calculations for CO2 sequestration

Of course, all that mining produces CO2 emissions. However, if we compare it to the amount of CO2 that the rock can absorb, the LCA (life cycle analysis) is on average 85-95%. The calculation of the LCA looks like this:

Typical value Unit (km/ton) CO2 emission (kg CO 2 )
CO 2 sequestration 1000 kg olivine weathered 1.25 kg CO2/kg olivine -1250kg CO2
CO 2 emission:
CO2 mine _ 1.79 – 3.90 kg CO 2 /ton - 2.8kg of CO2
CO 2 grind (coarse) 0.46 – 1.02 kg CO 2 /ton - 0.7kg CO2
CO 2 ship 30 gr CO 2 /ton km 1400km 42.0kg CO2
CO2 truck _ 138 gr CO 2 /ton km 100km 13.8kg of CO2
Total CO 2 emission 59.4kg of CO2
CO 2 net -1191 kg CO2
η CO2 CO2 efficiency _ 95%
Data taken from:
1. SJTHangx & CJSpiers, Coastal spreading of olivine to control CO2 concentrations, a critical analysis of viability, International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control (2009).
2. Koornneef, E. Nieuwlaar, Environmental Life cycle assessment of CO2 sequestration through enhanced weathering of olivine.


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