Though technically nonoperational, Sibanye-Stillwater’s Ezulwini mine, in the southwest of Joburg, sees its fair share of activity every day. That is, about 60 employees descend the shaft to ensure 68Ml of water is pumped from 1,500m below the surface every day, at a cost of R23m every month. And while Sibanye is none too pleased about pumping water from the "zombie mine" in perpetuity, it is forced to carry on with what it’s doing until it can obtain a mine closure certificate.

Mining began at Ezulwini — originally known as Western Areas gold mine and then as Cooke 4 — in 1961. In 1989, the operating company was awarded a permit to pump water from an underground compartment in aid of mining activity...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as articles from our international business news partners; ProfileData financial data; and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.



Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now