CSR Abroad – Corporate Governance and Policies

Internal corporate governance policies and standards related to CSR activities are evidence of a company’s commitment to maximizing local benefits and minimizing less positive impacts of their operations. Below are a few examples of how the governance and management systems of Canadian mining and exploration companies reinforce their commitment to CSR:

Responses by Company

Agnico Eagle Mines Limited

We have implemented a Responsible Mining Management System to ensure that commitments to health, safety, environment and social acceptability are met. We have a Health Safety Environment and Sustainable Development Board Committee to which we report on CSR matters on a quarterly basis.

American Vanadium Corp.

CSR is embedded into our Environmental Management System.

Angkor Gold Corp.

Angkor Gold has full time staff in place to implement CSR programs and undertake FPIC (Free Prior Informed Consent) monthly meetings with communities towards a continuing process of social license and social development. It is documented daily at a company level, reported weekly at a company level, and summarized monthly at a regional level.

AuRico Gold Inc.

Maintaining our social license to operate and being a responsible member of the local community sets the framework that delivers our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy. At AuRico we continually monitor and evaluate our CSR efforts and we always strive for best practices to ensure we deliver the best possible outcomes to all of our stakeholders.

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The health and safety our employees and the well- being of their families, the contributions to the communities where we work, and minimizing the impact on our environment, are all at the core of our values and are important measures of our success. AuRico ensures that we maintain a positive and mutually beneficial relationship with all of our community stakeholders, by having active oversight from the company's management team and the Board Technical and Sustainability Committee. This Committee meets on a quarterly basis and undertakes annual site visits to each of the operations.

Banro Corporation

The Board of Directors and management monitor changing international legislation, regulations, rules and best practices on a continuing basis and implement changes to policies and practices as needed. The Company's business and operating principles are stated in the Business Conduct Policy, which is applicable to all directors, officers and employees. The Policy establishes a common set of expectations and standards for the Company and its people with respect to ethical business practices, international business, personal conduct, health, safety & environment, and disclosure of information.

Barrick Gold Corp.

At Barrick, we are committed to building, operating, and closing our mines in a responsible manner. To do this, we put a priority on developing long-term and mutually-beneficial relationships with host governments and communities, while working to minimize and mitigate the social and environmental impacts of our activities. This is not the job of just one functional group or department; we believe that everyone who works at Barrick can make a meaningful contribution to mining responsibly.

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In practice, this can mean looking out for the health and safety of colleagues, working to improve safe driving in communities, including local community members in our water monitoring process, respecting the human rights of everyone impacted by our operations; along with other activities. Our commitment to responsible mining is supported by a robust governance framework that defines the company’s expectations of how employees, suppliers and contractors will conduct themselves in their daily work. The framework includes management systems, programs and policies that provide a common standard by which all sites are expected to operate, covering community relations, health, environment, safety, security, human rights and ethical business conduct. These are complemented by Board- and executive-level oversight and accountability to ensure we are monitoring and making progress in fulfilling our commitment to mining in a responsible manner. Our CSR Advisory Board, formed in 2012, also complements these policies, procedures and systems. The Advisory Board provides a forum for Barrick’s senior management to engage with external thought leaders in constructive discussion and lesson-sharing, hear about emerging trends, and receive practical guidance on best practice in social and environmental performance.

More information:

Cameco Corporation

In order to ensure our commitment to CSR, Cameco has codified those commitments through our Four Measures of Success: a safe, healthy and rewarding workplace; a clean environment; supportive communities; and outstanding financial performance. These measures of success were created to proactively address the financial, social and environmental aspects of our business. We also use our four measures as the basis for all of our corporate, business unit and departmental objectives every year, which help us to ensure we continue to prioritize CSR.

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More information:

Candente Copper Corp.

The department of CSR (subdivided between community relations, and sustainable development initiatives) is given the same priority in decision making and corporate structure as any other department of the company. CSR is directly overseen and guided by Candente General Management, and activities in-field in Peru have continued despite cut backs in exploration and engineering work recently due to the commodity market slow down.

Delta Gold Corp.

There is direct involvement and commitment from senior management and the Board of Directors to very high ethical standards.

Goldcorp Inc.

An industry association is a non-profit mutual benefit organization formed to provide services for its members and to promote education and professional standards. Goldcorp is a member of the following industry associations: Association for Mineral Exploration BC International Council on Mining and Metals Mine alliance – Québec, Canada Mining Industry Roundtable on Safety National Mining Association – US Nevada Mining Association – Nevada, US Northwest Mining Association – US Ontario Mining Association – Ontario, Canada Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada World Gold Council.

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More information:

The Sustainability, Environment, Health & Safety (SEH&S) Committee of our Board of Directors, which is composed entirely of independent directors, is responsible for assisting the Board in its oversight of sustainability, environment and health and safety matters, including monitoring the implementation and management of Goldcorp’s policies, procedures and practices relating to sustainability, environment, health and safety, Corporate Social Responsibility, and human rights matters. The SEH&S Committee also oversees our adherence to international standards and codes, such as the UN Global Compact, the World Gold Council’s Conflict-Free Gold Standard and the ICMM’s Sustainable Development Principles. In particular, the SEH&S Committee has the authority and responsibility for: reviewing, monitoring and, as appropriate, revising the sustainability, environmental, health and safety policies of the company; reviewing the corporate and operational sustainability, environment, health and safety performance of the company to ensure management is taking appropriate measures to achieve compliance with appropriate laws, legislation and the company’s sustainability, environment, health and safety policies; working with management in the development of short- and long-term policies and standards to ensure the principles set out in the sustainability, environment, health and safety policies are being achieved; reviewing community, environment, health and safety issues and incidents to determine that management is taking appropriate action in respect of these matters and that management has been duly diligent in carrying out its responsibilities and activities; reviewing results of community, environment, health and safety audits and management’s activities with respect to such audits; reviewing and monitoring management’s activities to ensure that the principal risks and opportunities for the company related to community, environment, health and safety are identified by management, and that sufficient resources are allocated by management to address risks and opportunities; ensuring the company’s directors are knowledgeable about their duties and responsibilities related to the scope of the SEH&S Committee; periodically visiting corporate locations to become familiar with the nature of operations, and to review relevant objectives, procedures and performance with respect to sustainability, environment, health and safety; and Investigating any extraordinary negative sustainability, environment, health and safety performance, where appropriate.

More information:

Handa Copper Corp.

Handa Copper is a very early stage exploration company. As such, management is the principal repository and driver of best practice. The company management and board of Directors have vast experience in the industry and therefore have a clear understanding of a company’s social responsibilities, and the role it would like to play. The nature and magnitude of this role is necessarily linked to performance, which itself governs funding and capacity.

HudBay Minerals Inc.

The environmental, health and safety, and community relations/social impacts aspects of our business are governed through an ISO14000 modeled management system at a corporate level, and the requirement that our operating sites have management systems certified to an ISO standard. We have Board approved policies stating our commitments on environment, health & safety, and human rights. We then have a number of standards that identify more detailed expectations from those policies.

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The corporate policies and the standards are in turn "requirements" within the site level management systems - requiring each site to detail the plans and procedures to appropriately implement the corporate policies and standards in the context of each particular site. We carry out informal audits by corporate personnel to review and guide site practices (our corporate team includes specialists in security, the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, health & safety, environment, TSM, and we also use specialist consultants as required). Our systems and performance in CSR are reported quarterly to a committee of the Board of Directors with a specific CSR mandate.

Kinross Gold Corp.

Our Corporate Responsibility Strategy integrates corporate responsibility into our business strategy at each stage of the mine life cycle by establishing:

  • A policy framework to articulate our commitments in specific areas based on our Ten Guiding Principles;
  • A Corporate Responsibility Management System (CRMS) to define standards and guidelines to implement these policies at our operations;
  • Core programs to drive performance in these areas, such as training, audits, emergency response drills, and risk assessments;
  • Performance metrics and site-specific annual CR targets incorporated into the corporate performance targets for each Kinross operation and tracked on a quarterly and annual basis;
  • Systematic governance of Company CR performance by the CR Committee of the Board of Directors.
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More information:

MBAC Fertilizer Corp.

Our policies are reviewed on a regular basis and our Corporate Governance Committee to ensure on an annual basis that our policies are being applied across the Company.

Nortec Minerals Corp.

Nortec is committed to mineral exploration in a sustainable and environmentally conscious manner. We openly negotiate with local villages in the areas where we perform work, and conform with all government standards. Nortec also prefers to work in countries with low levels of corruption, and is currently only operating in Finland. 

NOVAGOLD Resources Inc.

Through our Board of Director’s Environmental, Health & Safety, and Sustainability Committee, our Board is directly involved in reviewing all sustainability efforts in light of our corporate CSR policies and procedures. Our senior management are also at the forefront in active engagement with communities, native groups, and other local stakeholders on each of our projects. This continuous dialogue and feedback at senior levels ensures that CSR is consistently part of all our planning efforts.

Sherritt International Corporation

There is an enterprise-wide Sustainability Framework that outlines our commitments to CSR and is underpinned by a series of management systems. At the Board level, Sherritt has an Environment, Health, Safety and Sustainability Committee responsible for oversight of CSR performance and direction.

More information: 

Strata Minerals Inc.

The Company’s Board of Directors is well experienced in Canadian and International mining and business operations. Given the small size of the Company and current exploration activities, the Company does not have a formal CSR management system, but relies on the expertise of its Board and management in order to ensure commitment to CSR.

Suncor Energy Inc.

First, our vision for Suncor incorporates our commitment to sustainability: "Our vision is to be trusted stewards of valuable natural resources. Guided by our values, we will lead the way to deliver economic prosperity, improved social well-being and a healthy environment for today and tomorrow." Second, we have a sustainability committee led by our CEO, with other members from his leadership team, the VP Sustainability & Communications and the GM of Sustainability.

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We also have a Suncor Energy Foundation board that reviews the strategy for community investment for the corporation as well as all significant gifts and investments made by the Foundation. We have a Code of Conduct that all employees affirm they have complied with once per year. We have a management system with 18 elements that includes a process for evaluating risk (including social and environmental) and developing mitigation strategies. We have an asset development process that includes a process for early evaluation of potential social and environmental risks and their implications for new asset development. Finally, we have long term environmental goals (with a 2015 performance target) and we are in the process of developing new environmental and social goals for the corporation.

Unigold Inc.

We have developed in conjunction with the IFC best practices and are implementing them locally for the exploration phase of our project in the Dominican Republic.

U.S. Oil Sands Inc.

Governance is established by our Board of Directors and captured within various board sub-committee charters and policy statements; notably in our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics, and in our Policy Statement regarding Safety, Health, Environment, Risk, and Quality. 

Other Practices

A company indicated that it takes a long-term view of its corporate responsibility, which is reflected in the policies that guide its business decisions, and in its corporate culture that fosters safe and ethical behaviour across all levels of the company.  This company indicated that a goal is to ensure that its engagement with its stakeholders – including its workforce, industry partners, and the communities where it operates – is continued, mutually beneficial, and transparent.  This company indicated that its corporate responsibility program is driven by proactive initiatives and supported by monitoring systems that help it evaluate and continually improve its engagement practices.

A company indicated that its small size makes it very easy for all concerned to be made aware of its policy.


The following companies indicated they analyze monitoring results to monitor CSR activities:

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
  • AuRico Gold Inc.
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Cameco Resources Corp.
  • Cartier Resources Inc.
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • Hudbay Minerals Inc.
  • Kinross Gold Corporation
  • MBAC Fertilizer Corp.
  • NOVAGOLD Resources Inc.
  • Sherritt International Corporation
  • Skyharbour Resources Ltd.
  • Suncor Energy Inc.

The following companies indicated they consult and engage stakeholders to monitor CSR activities:

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
  • American Vanadium Corp.
  • Angkor Gold Corp.
  • AuRico Gold Inc.
  • Banro Corporation
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Cameco Resources Corp.
  • Cartier Resources Inc.
  • Foran Mining Corporation
  • Freeport Resources Inc.
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • Kinross Gold Corporation
  • MBAC Fertilizer Corp.
  • NOVAGOLD Resources Inc.
  • Sherritt International Corporation
  • Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Unigold Inc.
  • Zenyatta Ventures Ltd.

The following companies indicated they establish mechanisms for incident and issue reporting, investigation, and tracking to monitor CSR activities:

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
  • American Vanadium Corp.
  • AuRico Gold Inc.
  • Banro Corporation
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Cameco Resources Corp.
  • Cartier Resources Inc.
  • Foran Mining Corporation
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • Hudbay Minerals Inc.
  • Kinross Gold Corporation
  • MBAC Fertilizer Corp.
  • NOVAGOLD Resources Inc.
  • Sherritt International Corporation
  • Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Unigold Inc.
  • Zenyatta Ventures Ltd.

The following companies indicated they periodically verify performance through internal audit to monitor CSR activities:

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
  • Angkor Gold Corp.
  • AuRico Gold Inc.
  • Banro Corporation
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Cameco Resources Corp.
  • Cartier Resources Inc.
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • Hudbay Minerals Inc.
  • Kinross Gold Corporation
  • MBAC Fertilizer Corp.
  • Sherritt International Corporation
  • Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Unigold Inc.
  • Zenyatta Ventures Ltd.

The following companies indicated they periodically verify performance through external audit to monitor CSR activities:

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
  • AuRico Gold Inc.
  • Banro Corporation
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Cameco Resources Corp.
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • Hudbay Minerals Inc.
  • Kinross Gold Corporation
  • MBAC Fertilizer Corp.
  • Suncor Energy Inc.

The following companies indicated they establish a performance review process conducted by senior management to monitor CSR activities:

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
  • American Vanadium Corp.
  • AuRico Gold Inc.
  • Banro Corporation
  • Barrick Gold Corporation
  • Cameco Resources Corp.
  • Goldcorp Inc.
  • Hudbay Minerals Inc.
  • Kinross Gold Corporation
  • MBAC Fertilizer Corp.
  • Muskrat Minerals Incorporated
  • Sherritt International Corporation
  • Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Unigold Inc.
  • Zenyatta Ventures Ltd.

In addition to the above activities for monitoring CSR activities:

Angkor Gold Corp. indicated they hold weekly summary meetings where all HSE issues are discussed with a local management team and a couple expats.

Goldcorp Inc. indicated their commitment to responsible mining and sustainability excellence. Sustainability at Goldcorp includes the following functions: safety and health, environmental stewardship, Corporate Social Responsibility, and the security of Goldcorp employees, contractors and assets. Led by the Environmental group, these groups from across the company joined together during 2013 to develop the Sustainability Excellence Management System (SEMS). The SEMS provides the framework and standards for Goldcorp sustainability management and ensures a consistency of approach for implementing sustainability policies across the company. The SEMS is the organizational structure, responsibilities, practices, procedures, processes and resources for implementing and maintaining the desired level of sustainability performance.

Suncor Energy Inc. indicated they incorporate CSR considerations into project risk assessments.