RMF finds corporate ESG objectives rarely trickle down to mine site

The Responsible Mining Foundation (RMF) has found that 94% of mine sites scored an average of less than 20% on 15 standard ESG metrics, in its latest annual Responsible Mining Index (RMI).

The RMI 2022 assessed 40 companies and 250 mine sites across 53 countries, finding that the vast majority cannot demonstrate that they are publicly reporting, or engaging with communities and workers, on basic ESG risk factors and public interest issues.

The damning report said that only a minority of mine sites show any evidence of having implemented corporate protocols, and that there are ‘inconsistent efforts across different issues’.

RMF concluded that the majority of assessed mine sites ‘show little evidence of disclosure and engagement on issues such as local procurement, air and water management, occupational health and safety, and grievances’.

This generalised lack of mine site evidence has been a consistent finding across the RMI reports for 2018, 2020 and 2022.

The organisation said better transparency around how individual mines perform and more accountability at the corporate level would benefit each company as a whole, including workers, investors, and affected communities. This measure will be key to improving ESG output as it would enable year-on-year comparisons and performance tracking, it said.

“By tracking and documenting the extent to which corporate systems (guidelines, requirements, management standards, etc) are being implemented across all mine sites, companies can more readily identify any gaps to be addressed,” said RMF’s head of stakeholder engagement Pierre De Pasquale.