De-risking a Major Mining Operation to Meet International Lender Environmental & Social Standards, Northern Brasil
Acorn International was engaged by one of the world’s largest bauxite mine operators at the request of its shareholders to identify and fill gaps with meeting international lender standards for environmental and social risk management. Our work began with a diagnostic by our integrated team of international and national experts to identify primary environmental and societal risks associated with the mining operation and $400M expansion plan. Key issues of concern include consultation and engagement with neighboring communities of traditional people, impact to biodiversity and critical habitat, cumulative impacts over the life of the mine, and human rights management. We then delivered a clear gap assessment of current risk management practices vs those that would be required to meet international standards, per the interests of the shareholders, and presented a specific action plan for filling the gaps.
In Phase 2 of this multi-year engagement, our integrated team of experts is working with the operator to guide and support implementation of the action plan, while interfacing and providing updates to the shareholders upon request by the operator.
Our on-going work includes:
- Developing an overall socioenvironmental risk assessment and risk management plan
- Performing stakeholder mapping and strengthening the grievance mechanism and engagement plan
- Advising on consultation and engagement with Quilombola and
Ribeirinho communities who derive ecosystems services from impacted areas
- Scoping and supporting a Biodiversity Action Plan, Critical Habitat Assessment and Cumulative Impact Assessment per IFC PS 6 and 1
- Assessing and strengthening the operation’s capacity to assure human rights in security practices and to maintain overall risk management and engagement practices per international standards without disrupting critical timing of regulatory approvals
- Providing capacity building, training, monitoring and additional support/coaching where needed
Based on the outstanding work carried out on this multi-year engagement, the operator has engaged Acorn International to help it assure conformance with international standards for designing and managing mine tailings, which have become a critical issue for stakeholders worldwide in the wake of two tailings dam disasters in Brasil.
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