Leap of faith to Responsible Mining must start in the boardroom but work on the ground

Responsible Mining demands corporate courage that leads to transparency and sharing data with communities. But where does it begin? 


5 min

TAGS Mining

The path to responsible mining is a challenging, multi-year journey that relies on considerable groundwork being undertaken in different areas of the business including commitments made in the boardrooms.  

Leading operators understand that Responsible Mining and environmental stewardship require a strong leap of faith. It means getting on the front foot with communities and the public: collecting and publishing data transparently and regularly.

Followed by making informed decisions to manage operations responsibly within environmental constraints

It's commonplace to trust technology when taking any leap towards changing internal processes. However, can it be trusted when communicating critical data on environmental impact to those outside of the organization?

Today situational awareness of environmental parameters can be achieved through real-time monitoring and data management of air quality pollutants, odour, noise, vibration and mining water resources. 

Depending on how this data is surfaced and presented, this combination of parameters can offer a ‘birds-eye view’ of a specific operation’s environmental management strategies. This can provide operators with an instant understanding of the effectiveness of strategies to reduce emissions or manage water resources more sustainably.  

We asked Matt Scholl his thoughts on current constraints when it comes to implementing Responsible Mining strategies. Here’s what he had to say:

Matt Scholl is a well-regarded senior manager and thought leader with more than 20 years of experience in environmental science and technology. He has guided the implementation of effective solutions at some of the most environmentally constrained mining operations in Australia, North and South America and Northern Europe.

Industry leaders establishing fact-based conversations using technological innovation 

One example of this is the Brazilian mining giant, Vale. The company has garnered recognition from the Responsible Mining Index for its leadership in noise monitoring. The ability to correlate noise results with operations enables teams at Vale to have fact-based conversations with neighbouring communities while addressing complaints effectively.

Similarly, Newmont takes a proactive stance by publishing real-time data on air, noise, and weather monitoring for its Hollinger and Borden mines in Canada. 

Sharing data with the community is the new ‘corporate bravery’ 

A certain level of ‘corporate bravery’ is required to share operational data directly with the community, but this is what it will take to make the move towards Responsible Mining. Commitment in the industry means owning and controlling the data, responding to it in real-time, and engaging with the community. Vale and Newmont serve as examples of mining companies that have taken the leap of faith, setting a standard for others to follow. 

We asked Envirosuite CEO Jason Cooper about the exciting future he sees with responsible mining going forward. Here’s what he had to say: 

Jason Cooper is a highly regarded and well-respected industry leader with more than 20 years of experience in the technology sector in executive roles in both multi-national and start-up environments. He’s a passionate believer in the role technology plays in enabling responsible mining.

It’s also crucial to keep the end goal in mind. Regardless of where a mining company stands on the path to responsible mining, there are always new steps that can be taken. Each action contributes to progress, and aligning with experienced suppliers can serve as a powerful force multiplier. Sharing experiences and learning from others in the industry can help overcome challenges and drive continuous improvement. 

Download: Free white paper on Responsible Mining

Envirosuite understands the importance efficient and sustainable mines play in society. It is essential for the mining companies to break through data silos, build social license to operate and demonstrate responsible mining practices. 

Today’s mining operators remain focused on staying within imposed limits to avoid costly stoppages. Despite these measures, a variety of challenges at a mine site can hinder efficiency and lead to a constant struggle of balancing productivity targets against compliance thresholds.  

Learn more about how the leading mining companies are bridging sustainability commitments and delivering results in our latest white paper “Extracting a better future”.  

Take me to the Responsible Mining white paper.