The abandoned mine of Achada do Gamo
The abandoned mine of Achada do Gamo

The abandoned mine of Achada do Gamo

The abandoned mine of Achada do Gamo

An abandoned open pit mine

São Domingos, Portugal

Located in São Domingos (province of Alentejo) south of Lisbon, capital of Portugal, the mine of Achada do Gamo is an abandoned open pit mine. Located in the heart of the Iberian Pyrite Belt, which extends from southern Portugal to Spain, the region of the mine consists of the outcropping volcanic and sedimentary rocks that vary in age from 542 to 251 million years.

The history of mining in the area dates back over 4300 years when Phoenicians and Carthaginians already harvested copper during the Chalcolithic period (Copper Age).

It will nevertheless expect the ancient Romans who intensified the production of copper on a large scale. For nearly 400 years, they exploit a mine of copper and pyrite. At this time, the mines could reach a depth of over 40 meters.

The industrial revolution modernize extraction techniques and a British company called Barry Mason took control of the São Domingos mine. They create the Achada do Gamo mine around 1858 and it will continue its operation until 1966, when it closed due to ore depletion. With its intensive operations, and hundred years later at its closure, the open pit mine was a depth of 120 meters and a perimeter of approximately 2 km. It is calculated that all the periods of mining resulted in the production of 25 Mt, and mine waste material in the area is estimated at several hundred thousand tons. In this context, important environmental problems are associated, which are visible within an area around 50 km2.

Related content

The Belding Corticelli abandoned plant
Coaticook, Quebec (Canada)

It is in 2004 that the old factory Belding Corticelli has been shut down. Since then, it has been abandoned and floors has been waved at the mercy of weather that infiltrate by the roof and windows. Long time ago, there has been manufactured...

The neurons poet's abandoned plant
Montréal, Quebec (Canada)

The plant itself is definitively not as great at we saw in other places. Located in the heart of Pointe-Saint-Charles neighborhood of Montreal, this two storey building has no longer the cachet of its heyday. While neighboring buildings are...

The old board mill
Estrie, Quebec (Canada)

It was October 3, 2014 when it has been heard for the last time the siren for the end of the work shift. The last 180 employees picked up their belongings and closed the door behind them, thus ending an industrial history of over 125 years.

The Alstom's abandoned thermal power plant
Montréal, Quebec (Canada)

Sold for $ 1 in 2004 in exchange of the promise to clean up the heavily polluted soil, the land of more than 3.5 million square feet has not found its commercial and residential purpose promised by March Group, the current owner. However, when...