The International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM), whose members include 23 of the world’s leading mining companies, announced new commitments on water stewardship to help tackle one of the biggest global challenges of the 21st century.
With more than 1.2 billion people living in areas of water scarcity and natural habitats under increasing threat, ICMM recognizes that industry can play an important role in tackling this global issue.
ICMM member companies, which account for around a third of global mining activity, pledged action to support the responsible use of water with the launch of ICMM’s water stewardship position statement.
The position statement is binding on ICMM members and requires them to: apply strong and transparent water governance (including robust public reporting); manage water at operations effectively; and collaborate to achieve responsible and sustainable water use.
ICMM will continue to develop guidance and toolkits to support effective water stewardship which will be available to the wider mining industry as well as other industry sectors.
Tom Butler, ICMM’s CEO said: “Our members have shown real leadership in adopting a firm commitment to water stewardship. Society will not be able to meet the sustainable development challenges of the 21st century without improving the management and use of global water resources. As an industry we have a leading role to play in contributing practical solutions to water resource challenges.
“Water is vital for local communities, the natural environment and for businesses so leadership on water stewardship is required from all parts of society. We are pleased to be playing our part and we are happy to share our work with other sectors and the wider mining industry too.”
Stuart Orr, WWF International’s Practice Lead for Water said: “ICMM's continued push and progress on water stewardship is commendable. This isn't just raising the bar and expectations within the mining sector but across all business sectors. They would do well to follow.”