Dr. Marcello Veiga has worked thirty one years as a metallurgical engineer and
environmental geochemist for mining and consulting companies in Brazil,
Canada, US, Venezuela, Chile and Peru. He has worked extensively on
environmental and social issues related to mining. As associate professor since
1997 of the Norman B. Keevil Institute of Mining Engineering at the University of
British Columbia his research and teaching topics have focused on features that
lead to improving the image of mining and contributing to sustainable mining communities.
From 2002 to 2008, he worked as an expert and Chief Technical Advisor of the GEF/UNDP/UNIDO Global Mercury Project for UNIDO – United Nations Industrial Development Organization, in Vienna. This included implementation of Environmental and Health Assessment of mercury pollution in artisanal gold mining in Asia, Africa and South America. The project also included implementation of procedures to reduce mercury emissions, and local fabrication of pieces of equipment to reduce exposure of miners to mercury vapors and increase gold recovery. See full resume
Dr Sobral graduated in Chemical Engineering from the Federal Rural University of Rio de
Janeiro (1973). In early 1979 he joined the Centre for Mineral Technology (CETEM)
specializing in a metal surface-finishing project at the Nago International Training Center in Japan.
Dr Sobral has been head of the hydrometallurgy and biohydrometallurgy group for more than 30 years at Centre for Mineral Technology (CETEM), under the Brazilian Ministry of Science and Technology (MCTI). He presided over numerous MSc. and PhD thesis projects focused on the mining and chemical sectors regarding the use of elemental mercury in different industrial branches. He assists many chemical, industrial, and mineral processing plants in Brazil and abroad to maximize the efficiency of their processes while minimizing environmental impact. In particular, Dr Sobral is interested in working with small-scale gold miners to raise awareness concerning the characteristics of mercury and safe handling procedures.
He has extensive experience in Materials Engineering and Metallurgy, with an emphasis in Electrochemical Engineering and Electrometallurgy, working mainly with mercury contamination in artisanal mining. His expertise extends to electro-recovery and electro-refining of metals, precious metals in particular at the Brazilian Mint and other government mints around the world, as well as the impacts of heavy metals on the environment.
Since 2005 Dr Sobral has designed, developed, and optimized research and commercial facilities utilizing bioleaching to recover precious and industrial metals. He is a recognized authority on the subject and has published a book entitled “Biohydrometallurgical Processes: a Practical Approach” which he provides free of charge to advance research and development in this field.
Mr Ramirez is a seasoned process engineer, with vast
experience in the analysis, design, construction and
management of mineral resource projects. In particular, Mr
Ramirez has been responsible for the design and construction of
several notable gold production facilities in Central and South
His areas of expertise include management of mining projects, design of electromechanical equipment and spare parts and project management. Gonzalo is highly skilled in design such as software as a developer and AutoCAD, Maintenance programs for heavy machinery, TPM and RCM methodology: mechanical, electrical and lubrication.
Julia holds a chemical engineering degree from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and is a graduate of the CNPq Fellowship Program at the Brazilian National Centre for Mineral Technology (CETEM). Her research focuses on the electrochemical recovery of precious metals and mercury from artisanal tailings as well as the environmental and health hazards of heavy metals. Julia is the co-author of a number of academic articles and is assisting the Company in the practical application of environmental technologies.