Mining is a concept which brings both positive and negative connotations. It helps the economies of the country and the items being mined are essential to our everyday lives. However, environmentalists have a different take on the issue as some mining corporations abuse the environment.
Even though mining produces needed minerals and metals, it also promotes potential risks to the people working on the mine, to the community living near the mine, and to the parts of the environment being affected. Risks are evident when it comes to mining. There are health and welfare issues of workers and environmental concerns.
Mining is known to be a complex issue. On the one hand, it boosts economies and brings jobs to the people in the community. On the other hand, it affects the ecosystems around it and the environment. Mining can be both beneficial and dangerous, and people must be able to find the balance.
What Is Responsible Mining?
Responsible mining is a new concept which pressures mining corporations to adhere to international standards for the protection of the environment and communities living near a mine. Mining should not be able to bring long-term damage to the ecosystems surrounding it. As much as possible, it should be designed in a way wherein it will only provide the lowest environmental and social impact while people are benefiting from it.
Mining should be responsible mainly because it is disturbing ecosystems worldwide. Industrial waste from mining cannot be ignored, but we can lessen them. Mining corporations and governments should be well-versed when it comes to responsible mining because, in the long run, people may suffer due to the consequences of aggressive mining worldwide.
While responsible mining is a relatively new concept for some, the latest Responsible Mining Index report states it is not idealistic, but a realistic goal. Results of the study show companies across the mining industry are already at the maturity stage when it comes to their social, economic, and environmental approaches.
Moreover, the more stable and big a mining company is, the more likely it is to contribute to the advocacies of responsible mining. However, smaller mining companies also contribute to responsible mining in a conventional way, focusing on one area of responsible mining at a time.
The Impact Of Responsible Mining
Mining corporations must realize they can reap more benefits from responsible mining. It can provide more profits and quicker, but with lesser impact and fewer conflicts with surrounding communities. Responsible mining offers economic growth, government revenue, and even local employment. Mines provide both risks and opportunities to the environment and local communities. However, it should not come to a point whereas it gives more risks than opportunities.
More and more mining companies realize the importance of communities living nearby their operations. They now know how mining can directly affect the lives of people even though they are not working or involved in any way on the mining industry.
Multinational mining companies should be compliant and accountable since they have the biggest opportunity to be able to build and encourage the capacity of host nations.
Since mining corporations directly benefit from mining, they should be the ones to pioneer change in the mining industry. They should learn how to truly take care of the environment and communities since it is where their industry revolves.
It is now the time for governments to act on the mining industry and implement stricter standards and policies before it is too late. People should be more educated about responsible mining. We should not take mining as a negative industry as it also offers benefits to our communities.