John McCartney

Regional Hydrogeology Practice Lead

John is a hydrogeologist with over 30 years of experience designing and managing hydrogeological and mine water management projects.
Santiago, Chile
English, Spanish

The best water management strategies are based on good data and good science, underpinned by the right experience and a deep understanding of the environment, both physical and social.

John is our regional hydrogeology leader based in Santiago, Chile, responsible for further developing our hydrogeology, hydrology and water resource management offerings for the mining sector. He has over 30 years of experience researching and managing hydrological and hydrogeological projects in the mining and industrial sectors. He has international experience in several countries including Australia, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, USA, Mexico, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, Peru, Dominican Republic, and Zambia.

John has worked on many open pit and underground mining projects, covering all stages of project study and development, from pre-feasibility to post-closure for the last 30+ years. He has extensive experience and knowledge in hydrogeology and hydrology for mining applications, including water supply, dewatering system implementation and operation, acid rock drainage (ARD), tailings management, environmental impact assessment, and permitting. John's experience in leadership roles also provides him with insight and skills in business development, resource management, client satisfaction and QHSE management.

Examples of John's key projects include BHP's Escondida Mine project in the Atacama Desert, Chile: the world's largest copper mine based on capacity; and AngloAmerican's Quellaveco project in Moquegua, Peru: currently Peru's largest mining investment. In both projects he was involved in the water resource management studies for the life of mine, contributing to the design and implementation of water supply systems, mine dewatering, tailings facility management, and environmental control. In addition, John's most recent position was as Vice President of Water Management for Barrick Gold Corporation, a role which also allowed him to gain an appreciation for corporate governance and stakeholder commitments.

John has a degree in Geology and Chemistry from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, a post-graduate diploma in Geological Engineering from Curtin University, and an MSc. in Hydrogeology and Groundwater Management from the University of Technology Sydney, both in Australia. In addition. John is a Chartered Scientist of the Geological Society (of London) and is qualified as a Specialist Professional Consultant by the Aliance for Water Stewardship.