Our vision is to operate waterless mines in water scarce catchments
Making a difference through efficient water usage
With predicted global water shortfall of 40% by 2030, pressure on shared freshwater resources is as a global concern. Therefore, our vision is to reduce freshwater abstraction in water-scarce regions by 50%.
We can’t operate without water and 70% of our mines are in places where it’s scarce. This means that looking after water is a significant challenge, as without careful management, mining can have a negative impact on its quality.
That’s why we’re using less water, and then recycling and purifying it so we use and bring it to communities where it’s scarce. We’ve made progress so far, with our total water withdrawals amounting to 306.3 million m3 in 2017.
Stewards of our water catchments
We’re also taking the lead as stewards of our water catchments, helping preserve access rights and water quality for the communities near our operations. For example, In Limpopo, South Africa, we’re actively involved in partnerships through the Olifants River Water Forum and Lebolelo pipeline, to source water into the Northern and Eastern Limb platinum operations and communities.
Creating new water sources
Another important opportunity for us is to create water sources. To do this we must work with regional stakeholders to optimise re-use at a catchment scale near our sites, continue with regional desalination projects and manage aquifer recharge. In South Africa, we’re already exploring the feasibility of using excess mine-water discharge and water stored on operational mines as a water source option for the Limpopo province. In Peru, we’re constructing a dam to create a water-supply reservoir to serve the Quellaveco mining project, the local community and agricultural industry in the future.