A Brief to Mining Engineering Professionals in Australia


Mining engineers plan and direct the various engineering aspects of extracting minerals from the earth. They prepare initial plans for the type, size, location and construction of open pit or underground mines. The mining engineer’s different tasks include:

  • Conduct investigations of mineral deposits and undertake evaluations in collaboration with geologists, economists to determine whether the mineral deposits can be mined profitably,
  • Prepare plans for mines, including tunnels and shafts for underground operations, and pits and haulage roads for open-cut operations,
  • Use computer-aided design packages to prepare the layout of the mine development and the way the minerals are to be mined plan and coordinate the employment of mining staff and equipment with regard to efficiency, safety and environmental conditions consult with geologists and other engineers about the design, selection and provision of machines, facilities and systems for mining, as well as infrastructure such as access roads, water and power supplies
  • Make sure that mining regulations are observed, including the proper use and care of explosives, and the correct ventilation to allow the removal of dust and gases conduct research aimed at improving efficiency and safety in mines establish first aid and emergency services facilities at the mines.


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The different roles played by the mining engineers:

  • Mining engineers have a wide variety of career options including becoming mine planners and designers,
  • Consultants for tunnelling operations (for road, rail, hydro-electric, water supply or sewerage works),
  • Operations managers, technical specialists (e.g. rock mechanics, drilling and blasting, mine machinery or ventilation),
  • Investment analysts and advisers, researchers, or general managers and mine managers.

Mining engineering studies cover a broad range of subjects such as mining technology, rock mechanics, ventilation, geology, metallurgy, surveying, economics and finance, management, health and safety, environmental principles and computer applications.

The Industry offers an immense range of career pathways from the traditional mining disciplines to the core business professions. Mining professionals enjoy great training, attractive remuneration packages, career advancement opportunities, and the challenge of working in Australia’s most dynamic and high caliber workforces. And this calls for the skilled workers from across the world to immigrate to Australia. The mining industry spends 5.5% of total payroll on training expenditure, five times relevant government training benchmarks for the employment of 457 visa holders and the absolute one percent national Training Guarantee Levy. Apprentices and trainees are paid an average of $39,395. The Australian mining sector ranks among the top five producers of most of the worlds key minerals commodities.

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Australia’s mining industry has successfully testified its capacity in international markets. Its future performance will in part depend on economic conditions within Australia in ensuring the industry maintains its competitive rim given increased globalization of the industry. The mining industry was responsible for 7% of Australia’s GDP in 2011

In 2012 the Minerals Industry faced a more constrained environment characterized by lower commodity prices, high industry costs and the scaling back of capital expenditures. At the end of 2013, there were 63 projects at the Committed Stage with a combined value of $240 billion (inc. Oil and Gas). In 2014, the Industry will continue its transition from the investment phase of the resources boom to the production phase as newly developed projects commence commercial production. As do February 2014, the Minerals industry directly employs over 244,700 people. This is the largest employer of environmental professionals in Australia.

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