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New report reveals little ESG action at mine sites

There is still a big gap between corporate commitments and mine site action on critically important ESG issues, according to a new report from the Responsible Mining Foundation (RMF).

In its latest assessment of 40 companies and 250 mine sites, the foundation identified that commitments are commonplace, yet basic actions at mine sites – to inform and engage with communities and workers on for example safety issues or environmental impacts – are rarely evident.

Around 94% of the mine sites scored an average of less than 20% on the fifteen basic ESG issues assessed.

CompaniesAverage mine site
score

Polymetal 24%

Glencore20%

OCP Group19%

CODELCO16%

Teck 16%

Orano16%

BHP14%

Newmont13%

MMG13%

Freeport-McMoRan13%

AngloGold Ashanti12%

Gold Fields12%

Rio Tinto 12%

Anglo American 11%

Vale11%

Newcrest10%

Barrick 10%

Buenaventura9%

Coal India 9%

Bumi Resources7%

Antofagasta7%

Grupo Mexico7%

Nordgold7%

Vedanta Resources6%

Banpu6%

First Quantum6%

NMDC5%

ArcelorMittal5%

Peñoles5%

Boliden 5%

Exxaro4%

Sibanye-Stillwater3%

Zijin3%

Evraz 3%

KGHM2%

Fortescue2%

ERG1%

Navoi MMC1%

China Shenhua1%

RUSAL0%

“The vast majority of the 250 assessed mine sites across 53 countries cannot demonstrate that they are informing and engaging with host communities and workers on important ESG risk factors, despite the fact that many companies require their mine sites to take these basic actions,” said the RMF.

Related: Mining’s top ten ‘S’ trends in ESG for 2022

According to the report, most companies show some level of corporate protocols for their operations to engage with other water users on water management and to engage with worker representatives on occupational health and safety.

However, only a minority of the 250 assessed mine sites show any evidence of having implemented these requirements.

Source: RMF Report 2022

“At a time when many companies are announcing record profits and ambitious plans on technical issues such as emissions reductions or efficiency gains, there is an urgent need for a similar level of effort and leadership to ensure responsible practices across companies’ operations,” said Hélène Piaget, CEO of RMF.

Source: RMF

While the results on corporate policies and practices remain low on many issues, companies showed an overall average improvement of 11% over the RMI 2020 results.

Click here to access the individual scores of 250 mine sites

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