Paste 2021 Australian Organising Committee

Dr Nelson Amoah
General Manager Projects and Asset Compliance
Karara Mining Ltd

Nelson has over 30 years’ experience in civil and geotechnical engineering working in research, construction, engineering design, and project management on several mining and industrial projects in Africa, North America and Australia. He holds a BSc (Hons) degree from Ghana, and an M.Eng. and a PhD in geotechnical engineering from Memorial University, Canada.

Nelson’s industry practice in Australia over the past 23 years includes several years with large consulting engineering companies where he played leading roles in geotechnical and tailings facilities design, construction, and mine closure. He was principal geotechnical engineer at GHD until 2004. Since then, he has worked for large mining companies including five years with BHP Billiton Worsley Alumina and then Newmont Mining Ltd where he spent three years as regional manager for mine closure projects in charge of the Asia Pacific Region.

He joined Karara Mining in 2012 as manager in charge of the capital works program. Nelson is currently general manager projects and asset compliance and the registered manager for the Karara Magnetite Processing Operation. A key aspect of Nelson’s accountabilities in Karara has been the technical development and management of Karara’s Large Scale Tailings Filtration and Dry Stack facility (currently the largest of such operation in the world) and for the past eight years, he has conducted research/investigations and overseen its design and operational development.

Laila Burger
Rio Tinto


Dr Jarrad Coffey
Principal Engineer Tailings and Civil/Geotechnical
Rio Tinto

Jarrad has been involved with tailings management at Rio Tinto for the past  years, with responsibilities spanning technical support to projects and operations, long-term planning, and most recently, leadership of risk management and governance of tailings storage facilities. More broadly, his experience extends to civil mining assets and infrastructure with specialisation in heavy duty pavement design.

Professor Andy Fourie
Professor of Civil, Environmental & Mining Engineering
The University of Western Australia

Andy is a professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering at The University of Western Australia in Perth. He has a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa, and a PhD from the Imperial College, University of London. 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. Outcomes from his research have been incorporated in changes to environmental legislation in South Africa. He contributed to a series of guidelines for managing mine tailings in Australia, as well as developing a document for the International Atomic Energy Association on barrier systems for retaining uranium mining waste. 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. Andy is also currently a member of five international tailings review boards.

Dr Gordon McPhail
Water, Waste and Land Australia Pty Ltd

Gordon graduated as a civil engineer at the University of the Witwatersrand in 1974. Gordon worked as a consulting engineer to the mining industry specialising in the geotechnical and environmental aspects of mine waste management for 42 years and has participated in projects in Africa, Australia, and North and South America.

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 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.

Joe Rola
Principal Consultant (Mine Waste)
SRK Consulting

​Joe is a consulting civil/geotechnical engineer with over 15 years’ experience, concentrating on mine and power generation waste projects. He has been involved in a wide variety of projects from the concept stage through to detailed design, construction, operations and closure across Australia, as well as in Asia and Canada. Joe predominantly focusses on design/analyses, construction support and field/laboratory investigations.

Josephine Ruddle
Paste 2021 Conference Manager
Australian Centre for Geomechanics


Delmé van den Berg
Principal Dam Engineer