About Paste 2024

26th International Conference on Paste, Thickened and Filtered Tailings
16–18 April 2024 | Pullman Melbourne on the Park, Melbourne, Australia

Paste 2024 Organising Committee

Dr Jarrad Coffey
Manager Tailings and Dams
Rio Tinto

Jarrad has been involved with tailings management at Rio Tinto for the past 13 years, with responsibilities spanning technical support and leadership of long-term planning, projects and operations. For several years, Jarrad has developed and lead the governance and risk management programs of Rio Tinto Iron Ore’s tailings and dams assets. Some highlights of this work are the development and leadership of an integrated tailings community, dedicated tailings management and studies teams, and a comprehensive tailings management system.

Professor Andy Fourie
Professor of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering; and Program Director, Future Tails
The University of Western Australia

Andy is a professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering, and program director – Future Tails, at The University of Western Australia in Perth. He has worked at the University of Queensland and the University of the Witwatersrand. He has been a visiting professor at the University of Alberta, the Catholic University of Valparaiso in Chile and the University of Colorado in Boulder. His research is in the field of mitigating the impact of mining and municipal solid waste disposal. Andy has been involved in many industry-focussed projects with current projects including An Evaluation of Tailings Storage Facilities Monitoring Technologies managed by AMIRA and funded by eight mining companies; Future Tails aimed at training, research and education to improve tailings management funded by BHP and Rio Tinto; and Evaluating Potential Static Liquefaction of Tailings to Prevent Failures, funded by six mining companies as well as the Australian Research Council.

Theo Gerritsen
Principal Engineer Tailings
Rio Tinto

Theo is the principal tailings engineer for Rio Tinto Copper. Theo and his team oversee the tailings-related risk for the Rio Tinto Copper group by supporting the assets with governance, risk assessment(s), implementation of the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management, and review and support on general design activities. His experience includes all engineering aspects of tailings design for brownfield and greenfield sites, with experience gained across multiple commodities and geographies. Theo is active in the tailings community and partakes in the Queensland Tailings Group as a committee member, sits on the organising committee for the Mine Waste and Tailings Conference for AusIMM, the Canadian Dam Association/United States Society on Dams Engineer of Record working group and the International Commission on Large Dams Instrumentation Bulletin working group. During the last three years, Theo has been part of the BHP/Rio Tinto consortium studying tailings dewatering opportunities and trials. Prior to joining Rio Tinto in 2021, he was the Stantec global tailings lead. He holds a master’s degree from Delft University of Technology and resides in Brisbane.

Dr Gordon McPhail
Water, Waste and Land

Gordon graduated as a civil engineer at the University of the Witwatersrand in 1974. Gordon has worked as a consulting engineer to the mining industry specialising in the geotechnical and environmental aspects of mine waste management for more than 40 years and has participated in projects in Africa, Australia, and North and South America.

Pepe Moreno
Director – Corporate Consultant (Tailings)
SRK Consulting

Pepe is a professional civil/geotechnical engineer with over 30 years of service to the mining industry in mine waste management. He is a world leader in the management and design of mine waste facilities with a focus on the design of tailings disposal systems using a wide range of dewatering levels. Pepe is currently the Engineer of Record for leading mining operations in Australia, member of several independent technical review boards, and expert tailings reviewer for due diligence and valuation for banks and potential investors.

Genevieve New
Principal Engineer
ATC Williams

Genevieve is a practising geotechnical engineer with 23 years’ experience in the planning and design of tailings and water storage facilities in Australia and overseas.  She is a chartered engineer and fellow of Engineers Australia in the areas of leadership and management, civil engineering, and geotechnical engineering. Genevieve has worked for several private consulting and mining companies, and currently works for ATC Williams in Melbourne.  She is a member of the ANCOLD Tailings Working Group and for the past 3 years has provided engineer of record services to Cadia.
Genevieve’s experience includes geotechnical site investigation, materials testing and characterisation, embankment design for the life-of-facility and closure-landform, failure mode and consequence category assessments for ANCOLD and GISTM, risk assessment and risk-informed design for earth and rock-fill embankments, dam monitoring and systems, surveillance, governance, and reviews.  

Dr David Reid
Research Fellow
The University of Western Australia

David is a tailings engineer with 16 years of consulting and research experience in the design, laboratory testing, and analysis of tailings and tailings storage facilities. He is primarily involved in laboratory and in situ characterisation of tailings with respect to their strength, consolidation behaviour and liquefaction susceptibility. David completed a PhD at The University of Western Australia (UWA) on the behaviour of polymer-treated tailings. He has worked at UWA since 2017 as a research fellow on the ARC Linkage project TAILLIQ and more recently on the Future Tails project.

Josephine Ruddle
Paste Event Manager
Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Australia


Dr Fiona Sofra
Managing Director
Rheological Consulting Services Pty Ltd

Fiona is co-founder and managing director of Rheological Consulting Services Pty Ltd and an honorary fellow of the University of Melbourne. Fiona is an internationally recognised expert in slurry handling and rheology, having consulted to many world leading minerals companies for over 20 years. Fiona’s approach is focused on understanding the complex interrelationships that contribute to rheological phenomena in slurries and pastes and translating these into relevant and valuable inputs for optimal and reliable plant operation.

Dr Ryan Veenstra
Global Backfill Specialist
Newmont Corporation

Ryan is Newmont’s global backfill specialist, providing technical and operational expertise and leadership for Newmont’s underground mines. Over the last 15 years, he has been involved in backfill as an academic, consultant, and onsite engineer, and presently coaches and mentors Newmont’s backfill engineers in Australia and the Americas. His expertise and experience cover the entire backfill system with a particular speciality in backfill geomechanics. He has a geological engineering degree from the University of Waterloo and holds a PhD in civil engineering from the University of Toronto.