Profiling the Centre of Excellence for Environment and Mining (CEA-EMIG) in Niger
The Centre of Excellence for Environment and Mining (CEA-EMIG) is one of the 53 Africa Centres of Excellence for Development Impact (ACE Impact) in West Africa. CEA-EMIG is hosted by the School of Mines, Industry and Geology in Niamey, Niger. As part of the centres specialized in the thematic area of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), the EMIG has Mining and Environment as its primary focus areas with special interest in Geology, Civil, Industrial and Electrical Engineering.
CEA- EMIG seeks to be one of Africa’s leading training hubs in environment and mining, providing high quality training to address regional challenges in Africa. The centre delivers specialized training in Minerals Extraction and Processing, Environment and Waste Management, Mining Safety, Restoration and Rehabilitation of Mining Sites and Management of Water, Soil and Noise, among others. These trainings are available in Bachelors, Masters, and short-term programmes. In addition, the center focuses on providing improved teaching and learning through regular availability of training of trainers’ programmes for faculty, and the promotion of applied research through university-industry linkages.
The centre has conducted transformative research in validation of a natural material for sealing uranium processing discharge ponds, Geochemistry and Remote Sensing applied to the study of metal pollution of the environment by mine tailings, and Optimization of gold panning techniques and reduction of environmental impacts. With its ultra-modern classrooms and laboratories, as well as innovative teaching staff, the centre is committed to equipping students with the necessary skills and expertise required by industries as well as the applied knowledge to meet the demand skills for Africa’s development. The centre also provides a serene learning atmosphere and environment for students by providing accommodation and recreational facilities. Currently, there are 54 students enrolled under the project – 22 Masters and 32 Bachelors.
To achieve its objectives, CEA-EMIG has collaborated with various institutions within and outside the region. Notable among these are the Abdou Moumouni University of Niamey (Niger); Institut Catholique Polytechnique Saint Jérôme de Douala (Cameroon); University of Lomé (Togo); National Polytechnic Institute Félix HOUPHOUET BOIGNY; National School of Mineral Industries of Rabat (Morocco); International Institute of Water and Environmental Engineering 2iE; Polytechnic School of Abomey-Calavi (Benin) and the University of EXETER (England). The centre is also part of the “Responsible Mining Activity and Sustainable Development Network”(RAMR2D) of the ACE Impact Thematic Network project. In strengthening its engagement with industry, EMIG has renewed its partnership through an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Société des Mines de l’Air (SOMAIR). The partnership has resulted in joint publication and implementation of research, internship opportunities for EMIG students, use of EMIG laboratories, and experts in carrying out SOMAIR activities.
Works of EMIG have received utmost recognition through awards such as the International Prize on Innovative works in Earth Sciences and Civil Engineering by the Vinci Construction, a global leader in the mining and construction industry. Again, in 2020 EMIG placed second in the world and first in Africa at The Trail Students Challenge also organized by Vinci Construction. 506 teams from 78 countries across the globe participated in the competition.