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Weatherly International
11 January 2017

Mining industry leaders commit to water stewardship 

The International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) has announced new commitments to water stewardship to help tackle one of the biggest global challenges.

The ICMM recognises that the mining industry can play an important role in tackling this issue of water scarcity in light of the more than 1.2 billion people living in areas of water scarcity placing natural habitats under increasing threat.

The ICMM’s member companies, which account for about a third of global mining activity, pledged action to support the responsible use of water with the launch of the organisation’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.

The 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.

“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," says ICMM CEO Tom Butler.

“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,” he says.

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.”

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