Another more brutal effect on our planet is the failure of tailings dams. An unacceptable number fail worldwide every year, most publicly San Marco in Brazil in 2015 and Brumadinho, also in Brazil, earlier this year.
Click here for Andy Home’s Reuters article.
The long-term effects of AMD on society are probably worse, but the short-term damage from tailings dam failures is acute, in lives lost and damage caused. The link between cause (mining) and effect is also very visible, something that sometimes gets lost when thinking about AMD, which can be confused in peoples’ minds with other forms of pollution like phosphate fertilisers.