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Sustainable Mining Companies

November 3, 2021
Thomas Eismann

Thomas Eismann

My name is Thomas Eismann. I was born and raised in Perú, then moved to France for a decade and back to Perú. I have a background in electrical engineering that i studied in France and USA. After studying and back in Perú I progressed in logistics. Now I am moving to mining software with Promine, facing my new challenge. I enjoy craftsmanship, outdoors activities, travelling and a nice chat.

What is behind the recent push for mining companies to go green and improve the sustainability of their operations? Since around 2017, several policy reports and a growing number of news articles have highlighted how mining companies are increasingly trying to ensure that their operations are more environmentally sustainable and climate-friendly. Mining companies hope to do this by, for instance, reducing their carbon emissions and switching to renewable energy sources to power their operations. In an industry predicated on the extraction of non-renewable resources, is this just another example of disingenuous industry green-washing? Or does it represent a significant shift that could truly have a positive impact on global environment and climate change goals? (Green & Sustainable Mining: Green-Washing in the Extractive Industries?” 2021) 

 The Mining Association of Canada’s Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) standard is a globally recognized sustainability program that supports mining companies in managing key environmental and social risks. TSM was the first mining sustainability standard in the world to require site-level assessments and is mandatory for all companies that are members of implementing associations. Through TSM, eight critical aspects of social and environmental performance are evaluated, independently validated, and publicly reported against 30 distinct performance indicators.  

Increasingly, other mining associations, governments, investors, and manufacturers are looking to TSM as global best practice in sustainable and responsible mining. In recent years, mining associations in Spain, Finland, Norway, Botswana, Argentina, Brazil, Australia and the Philippines have adopted the program. 

The program’s core strengths are: 

Accountability: Participation in TSM is mandatory for all MAC members. Assessments are conducted at the facility level where the mining activity takes place–the only program in the world to do this in our sector. This provides local communities with a meaningful view of how a nearby mine is faring. 

Transparency: Members commit to a set of TSM Guiding Principles and report their performance against the program’s 30 indicators annually in MAC’s TSM Progress Reports. Each facility’s results are publicly available, and are externally verified every three years. 

Credibility: TSM includes ongoing consultation with a national Community of Interest (COI) Advisory Panel. This, independent multi-interest group helps our members and communities of interest foster dialogue, improve the industry’s performance and shape the program for continual advancement. 

In Canada, administration and management of the TSM standard is fully funded by MAC members through annual association membership fees. (“Towards Sustainable Mining” 2021) 

 

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