The Mining Standards and towards a culture of best practice

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Vern Newton and Renee Young

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Increasing pressure on companies to maintain their social license to operate has meant that globally the mining industry is lifting their environmental performance including on many occasions adopting the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and contributing to the Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021- 2030. This increased awareness and actions to improve performance by the mining industry is, however, by no means universal. The process of change within a mining company to progress towards a culture of environmental best practice can often be a long process requiring ‘company champions’ to work diligently and continuously with management. The International Standards for Mine Site Restoration (the Mining Standards) provides a framework to help companies on that journey, specifically when the post mining land use is ecological restoration. The best outcomes are achieved when trust is established between government (regulators), industry, community and science and leveraging this to go beyond best practice (Fig. 1). It can be difficult to attain and is something that is being grappled with globally, but when it is established, the best net environmental and social benefits can be realized.

Resource Type:
Conference Presentation, SER2021

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