Perspectives on Closure and Revitalisation of Extraction Sites and Sustainability: A Q-Methodology Study

Stefanie Streit, Michael Tost, Katharina Gugerell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Closure and revitalisation are essential steps in the life cycle of a mineral extraction site. Proper planning and execution can counteract potential negative impacts caused by extraction activities and allow a positive impact to be left on the post-closure region. Decisions on these steps are not made solely by the extraction company; legislators and the public also exert influence. Different opinions and expectations on closure and revitalisation can lead to tensions between actors. Thus, knowing diverse opinions and expectations and considering them in planning contributes to a successful implementation of measures. Using Q-methodology in a study focused on selected EIT RIS countries, we identified five viewpoints on the closure and revitalisation of an extraction site. The statements for this study have been developed based on international and company standards for closure and revitalisation, namely ICMM, IRMA, AngloAmerican and Rio Tinto, which we then also used for comparison in order to see how they relate to the five resulting viewpoints. Across all viewpoints, our results reveal a preference for environmental considerations, followed by social and economic concerns. Even though this paper considers closure and revitalisation separately from mineral extraction, these processes are intertwined. Thus, a sustainable planning and management of the extraction process itself contributes to a successful and sustainable post-closure landscape.

Original languageEnglish
Article number23
Number of pages17
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright: © 2023 by the authors.


  • mining
  • mineral extraction
  • closure and revitalisation
  • Q-methodology
  • sustainability
  • land use

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