London Metal Exchange lures nine mining giants to ESG disclosure pledge

The London Metal Exchange launched a register of mining companies that have agreed to make disclosures around key sustainability issues, ranging from human rights to climate change.

Nine major mining companies, including Anglo American and Antofagasta, have listed disclosures under the LME’s sustainability taxonomy, which allows them to be transparent over the impacts of their businesses in relation to environmental, social and governance issues. 

Using the LME’s system — LMEpassport — allows companies to also clearly report what they’ve done to address the ESG areas of concern. Other miners that have signed up include Boliden, Companhia Brasileira de Alumínio (CBA), Freeport-McMoRan, Rusal, Thailand Smelting and Refining, and Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt.

The LME said on 12 October it has approved a limited set of possible disclosures to date, but “looks forward to working with its listed brands and standards / certification organisations to expand this set to ensure that brands are able to provide transparency across all their sustainability work.” This would ensure companies in the sector “are responding to growing consumer demand for transparency in respect of ESG standards at all levels.”

The LMEpassport comes in addition to the exchange’s 2019 responsible sourcing requirements, which for the first time took into account non-metallurgical standards relating to human rights abuses. The rules were designed to ensure that no human rights abuses or conflict financing were involved in the supply chain of metal production. Mining firms are expected to issue reports under the requirements in 2022.

“Transparency can help facilitate meaningful progress in important target areas and we’re pleased to support our brands in their vital work to drive the sustainability agenda across all base metals,” the LME’s chief sustainability officer Georgina Hallett said.

Anglo American’s marketing CEO Peter Whitcutt, said the LMEpassport is a way of highlighting the company’s sustainability credentials, contributing to greater transparency across the industry.

That would include, for example, “ongoing independent third party assurance of all our mines against recognised standards,” Whitcutt said.

Antofagasta CEO Iván Arriagada, said sustainability and transparency are at the core of the company.

“By publicly reporting our ESG credentials, reporting progress on implementation of the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and by obtaining recognised third-party assurance of the highest international sustainability standards like the Copper Mark, our stakeholders can see how we progress towards our targets,” Arriagada said.

To contact the author of this story with feedback or news, email Penny Sukhraj

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