Didipio Project Mine Waste Management System

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OceanaGold Philippines Inc. engaged GHD to design a Tailings Storage Facility (TSF) and Waste Rock Dump (WRD) for the Didipio gold-copper mine located on the island of Luzon, approximately 270 km north of Manila in the Philippines.

One of the key challenges our team faced was the terrain. The TSF and WRD are located in a steep-sided valley, prone to landslides over a significant river with a wet tropical climate that averages 3.3 m annual rainfall. The target storage volume for the TSF included a large stormwater retention capacity to manage flood inflows and a tight timeframe for construction.

GHD developed a design featuring an innovative flow-through zone within the WRD to pass mean river flows, and a WRD landform to manage and retain flood peaks upstream. The TSF was incorporated into the WRD, which provided an economic method of construction as well as a conservatively safe, stable, structure suited to long-term sustainable closure.

Our team carried out geotechnical site investigations for the mine waste facility (and the mill site), followed by TSF detailed design and documentation for the TSF in 2011. We are currently (2017) providing an ongoing role with design advice including on-site technical inspections and QA/QC throughout the construction of the TSF and WRD.

We have worked closely with the Didipio team to plan and accommodate all materials from the open pit to the TSF/WRD – in order to maximise utilisation of resources and facilitate continuous construction in a challenging environment.



With you, our hydrogeologists work alongside our engineers, environmental consultants, planners, surveyors and GIS consultants to arrive at integrated solutions.

GHD has global hydrogeological experience in groundwater resource assessment, aquifer storage and recovery (ASR), mine dewatering, aquifer depressurisation, groundwater management and environmental assessment, salinity, acid sulfate soils (ASS) and acid and metalliferous drainage (AMD).

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Tailings (Mines & Residue)


Over the past 30 years, we’ve earned local and international recognition for cost-effective, practical, and innovative methods used in tailings design and management.

GHD is represented on national and international technical committees including Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM), Australian National Committee on Large Dams (ANCOLD) and close links with organisations such as the Australian Centre for Geomechanics (ACG).

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