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Current practices in the mining industry should integrate social, environmental, local economic and technical considerations, according to the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management

mining industry standardIntegrating social, environmental, local, economic and technical considerations in the mining sector are in focus. (Image source: Pexels/Pixabay)

With an ambition of zero harm to people and the environment, the Standard significantly raises the bar for the industry to achieve strong social, environmental and technical outcomes. It elevates accountability to the highest organisational levels and adds new requirements for independent oversight. The Standard also establishes clear expectations around global transparency and disclosure requirements, helping to improve understanding by interested stakeholders.

The Standard was developed through an independent process - the Global Tailings Review (GTR) -which was co-convened in March 2019 by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) following the tragic tailings facility collapse at Brumadinho, Brazil, on 25 January 2019.

The co-conveners have each endorsed it and call for its broad and effective implementation across the industry:

UNEP will support governments that wish to incorporate and build upon this Standard into their national or state legislation and policies.

PRI, representing US$103.4 trillion in assets under management, will be developing investor expectations to support all mining companies in implementing the Standard.

ICMM member companies will implement the Standard as a commitment of membership, which includes robust site-level validation and third-party assessments.