Polyus welcomes the launch of the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management, announced yesterday by the International Council of Mining and Metals (ICMM), in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).
As an ICMM member, Polyus has been closely involved in the development of the Standard, participating in working groups and providing technical input and recommendations based on the company’s own experience. The company formed its own working group on the Standard, comprising HSE, Engineering, Legal, Environmental, Tailings and Sustainability specialists.
Polyus’ CEO Pavel Grachev also joined a designated CEO working group for the discussion of the draft Standard, providing strategic feedback on its exact requirements, and insight on its implementation methods and requirements across varying jurisdictions.
The Standard, which was developed through an independent process (the Global Tailings Review), is the result of an industry-wide movement to strengthen tailings safety management practices within the mining sector following the tragic Brumadinho disaster in 2019.
Polyus joined other industry stakeholders in engaging in an open and transparent manner on its development, to ensure the resulting Standard sets a new and significantly higher benchmark for international best practice. The Standard covers the entire tailings facility lifecycle — from site selection, design and construction, through management and monitoring, to closure and post-closure, to ensure their safe management and prevent catastrophic failures. Implementation of the Standard on the part of ICMM member companies includes robust site-level validation and third-party assessments of tailings facilities.
Ensuring the highest level of tailings-related safety is a fundamental requirement for the safe management of Polyus’ operations. The Company has extensive internal controls and policies, as well as both internal and third-party monitoring systems, to minimize any potential risk of safety breaches or environmental contamination. In 2019, following a request from over 100 investors representing the Mining and Tailings Safety Initiative, Polyus provided comprehensive disclosure on its tailings safety controls in a Special report on the safety of TSF which is available on the company’s website.
Pavel Grachev, Chief Executive Officer of PJSC Polyus, commented:
The mining industry is working harder than ever to further reduce safety and environmental risks and increase disclosure to give stakeholders the transparency they deserve.
Polyus is committed to helping drive this continuous improvement and we were pleased to support the ICMM on this very important initiative. We welcome the Standard on Tailings Management as a significant step forward for the safer management of tailings facilities in the mining industry.
Polyus remains committed to promoting further transparency in disclosure, and our focus now is on the implementation of the Standard.