International Advisory Panel to Support New Global Tailings Management Institute

Nairobi: The UN Environment Programme, the Church of England Pensions Board and the Council on Ethics of the Swedish National Pension Funds announced today a multi-stakeholder advisory panel to support the foundation of the Global Tailings Management Institute. The international advisory panel comprising leading figures in tailings management, civil society, industry, finance and academia will guide the development of the Institute, working alongside UNEP.

The Institute will support the adoption of the Global Industry Standard on Tailings Management (2020), oversee adherence to and independent verification of the adoption of the Standard. The Institute is also intended to become a knowledge hub for tailings management. The founders of the Institute are also considering how it may host the global tailings portal which will align with the new disclosure requirements of the Standard. Critical to the success of the Institute will be the confidence of all stakeholder groups that are impacted by tailings. To this end, the advisory panel comprises a broad membership, including NGOs, Unions, academia, affected communities, heads of other international standard bodies, finance, insurance, legal, regulatory, and representatives from both small and large mining companies. Broader consultation and engagement on the planned Institute will take place in Q4 2021 and Q1 2022. A series of engagements will be scheduled to provide all stakeholders, who have an interest in how the Institute will function, the opportunity to provide comments.

The Advisory Panel will be supported in its work by an independent consultant, based in UNEP, working on behalf of the partners. David Cooling, a former senior tailings manager at ALCOA, has been charged with facilitating the process leading to the formation of the Institute.

Members of the Advisory Panel are:

Jan Morrill Earthworks

Victoria (Vicky) Corpuz Tebtebba Foundation

Peter Kindt ING

Günter Becker Munich Re

Rebecca Campbell White & Case

Glen Mpufane IndustriALL – interim member

Andressa Lanchotti State Prosecutor

Prof Andy Fourie University of WA

Antonia Mihaylova IUCN

Paul Bateman International Cyanide Management Institute

Tamara Johndrow Freeport

Johan Boshoff Gold Fields

Prof. Elaine Baker University of Sydney/GRID Arendal

Discussions are continuing with other potential members of the Panel.

Commenting on the formation of the Panel, Adam Matthews, Chief Responsible Investment Officer of the Church of England Pensions Board and PRI Co-Convenor of the Tailings Standard said: “The formation of a Global Tailings Management Institute is a vital piece of the architecture that needs to be put in place to bring the Global Tailing Standard to life. In order for the Institute to carry the confidence of many stakeholders, it is essential we are informed by a wide range of perspectives and insights. We are grateful to those that have been willing to offer their time and wisdom to support this important endeavor.”

Ligia Noronha, Head of UNEP New York Office, said: “UNEP is delighted to see this multi-stakeholder panel of experts that will ensure that we have a better and stronger Institute as a result. We recognise the Institute needs to be practical to support wide adoption of the Global Tailings Standard. We also recognise that communities and those most impacted by tailings or that live with tailings facilities in their communities need to have confidence in the work of the Institute. The task of the Advisory Panel will be to inform our decision making and ensure we progress towards our ambition of zero harm to people and the environment from tailings facilities.”

John Howchin, Secretary-General of the Council on Ethics of the Swedish AP Funds and PRI Co-Convenor of the Global Tailings Standard said: “Tailings remain a clear and present risk in many parts of the world and whilst good practice exists, we need to see this Standard across all operations with transparency and independent verification that it is being applied.”

 

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