Responsible Minerals Initiative
New ESG Standard for Mineral Supply Chains Announced

New ESG Standard for Mineral Supply Chains Announced

June 16, 2021
The new standard provides a set of criteria applicable to mineral processors, smelters and refiners, including those integrated with mine sites.

The Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) of the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) announced on June 3  the release of its Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) Standard. The objective of the standard is to further improve conditions for workers, address environmental and community impacts, and manage governance risks in all mineral supply chains.

The Responsible Minerals Assurance Process (RMAP) ESG Standard leverages the RMI’s extensive experience in minerals supply chain assurance and benchmarking against internationally recognized frameworks.

The new Standard provides a set of criteria applicable to mineral processors, smelters and refiners, including those integrated with mine sites, in all countries and marks a significant expansion of the RMI’s scope, going beyond the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas.

The RMI’s ESG Standard includes several key components:

  • Social obligations cover a range of labor practices such as age of employment, fair working hours, minimum wages and overtime, grievance mechanisms, freedom of association and diversity provisions, including women’s rights and under-represented communities.
  •  Occupational health and safety provisions; address company hygiene, safe operation of equipment, personal protection requirements, and access to first aid and canteens.
  • Governance requirements ensure that businesses are duly registered, adhere to laws and regulations.

“The RMI’s ESG Standard offers the most comprehensive set of Environmental, Social & Governance requirements globally for facilities sourcing and processing minerals,” said Leah Butler, vice president of Responsible Sourcing at the Responsible Business Alliance, in a statement. “This Standard will help companies meet government, investor, customer and regulatory requirements, such as the expectations set by EU Due Diligence frameworks and the London Metals Exchange (LME).”

Building on the RMI's Risk Readiness Assessment framework and the RBA’s Validated Assessment Program (VAP), the ESG Standard focuses on site-level facility operations as a complement to supply chain management aspects that are already covered by existing RMAP minerals due diligence standards. Facilities that undergo the RMI’s ESG Standard will be publicly recognized on the RMI’s website.

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