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World Gold Council Releases The 10 Responsible Gold Mining Principles

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World Gold Council Releases The 10 Responsible Gold Mining Principles

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The World Gold Council (WGC), as the market development organization for the gold industry, recently launched its Responsible Gold Mining Principles (RGMP).

These lay out the framework through which the gold mining companies can provide confidence to investors, supply chain participants and consumers that their gold has been produced responsibly. Backed on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals by the United Nations and increased awareness of sustainable financing they complement the initiatives like the International Council of Mining and Metals (ICMM) Performance Expectations and the London Bullion Market Association’s (LBMA) Responsible Gold Guidance, which applies specifically to refiners.

“It is our aim that the Responsible Gold Mining Principles reinforce trust in gold and the gold mining industry. Consumers, investors and the downstream gold supply chain will be able to know, with confidence, that their gold has been responsibly sourced,” said World Gold Council CFO Terry Heymann.

The 10 golden rules that emerged from this initiative are:

Governance:

  1. Ethical conduct:conduct business with integrity including absolute opposition to corruption.
  2. Understanding impacts:engage with stakeholders and implement management systems to ensure that impacts are understood and managed; and realize opportunities and provide redress where needed.
  3. Supply chain:require that suppliers conduct their businesses ethically and responsibly as a condition of doing business.

Social:

  1. Safety and health: protect and promote the safety and occupational health of workforce (employees and contractors) above all other priorities; and empower them to speak up if they encounter unsafe working conditions.
  2. Human rights and conflict: respect the human rights of the workforce, affected communities and all people being interacted with.
  3. Labor rights: ensure that operations are places where employees and contractors are treated with respect and are free from discrimination or abusive labor practices.
  4. Working with communities: aim to contribute to the socio-economic advancement of communities associated with operations and treat them with dignity and respect.

Environment

  1. Environmental stewardship: ensure that environmental responsibility is at the core of your work.
  2. Biodiversity, land use and mine closure: work to ensure that fragile ecosystems, critical habitats and endangered species are protected from damage and plan for responsible mine closure.
  3. Water, energy and climate change: improve the efficiency of use of water and energy; recognizing that the impacts of climate change and water constraints may increasingly become a threat to the locations where one works and a risk to a license to operate.

“Adherence to strong environmental, social and governance principles should be a key part of any responsible gold mining business and, as such, the members of the World Gold Council have collaborated, along with key industry stakeholders, to develop the Responsible Gold Mining Principles,” said Newmont Goldcorp CEO Gary Goldberg, who oversaw this initiative on behalf of the World Gold Council board.

Companies that adopt the RGMP will be required to obtain external assurance from an independent, third-party provider. This will further provide enhanced confidence to purchasers that the gold they buy is mined and sourced responsibly.

 

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