We support calls for greater transparency in tailings management disclosure and will work with the industry and community, regulatory and financial stakeholders to promote the application of consistent disclosure that informs better tailings dam stewardship.
In April 2019, the Church of England Pensions Board and the Council on Ethics Swedish National Pension Funds wrote to more than 700 mining companies to request specific disclosures in relation to their tailings storage facilities (TSFs).
BHP is committed to improving the transparency of information about TSFs and is working with the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) and other relevant organisations to pursue improvements in global tailings management practices.
As part of this commitment, we have responded to the Church of England Pensions Board and the Council on Ethics Swedish National Pensions Funds’ request. You can find a link to BHP’s full response here.
We support and have contributed to the development of the new Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management (GISTM), which was developed as an international standard for safer tailings management through a process co-convened with the ICMM, United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and the Principles of Responsible Investing (PRI). The new international standard provides a framework for safer tailings management and an ambition to achieve the goal of zero harm to people and the environment, and we are taking a proactive approach to ensure we meet all of the requirements that have been set out in the standard. We fully support the transparency and independence of the review process, which has brought together multiple stakeholders across a range of disciplines to achieve a global industry standard. We see this as a significant step forward for the safer management of tailings storage facilities and welcome ongoing dialogue with industry stakeholders towards the potential establishment of an independent entity to oversee the standard. Our focus is now on the implementation of the standard through our ICMM membership commitment.