Risk Communication: A Framework for Technology Development and Implementation in the Mining and Minerals Processing Industries

This report presents the outcomes of a research project into social risk, risk communications and new technology projects in the minerals industry. Minerals companies are increasingly using risk analysis to identify and manage factors that may impact adversely on their businesses. However, the focus of risk assessment is still primarily on health and safety, environmental and financial risks, with the sphere of 'social risks' continuing to receive relatively little attention. This has resulted in companies and operations being 'blindsided' by unexpected negative community reactions to planned process improvements. There is a growing awareness within the minerals industry that the failure to identify and act upon social risk represents a significant threat to the uptake of new projects, processes and technologies. In today's market, community expectations, regulatory controls and access to information via the media and internet have increased community capacity to influence industry and this influence can have significant implications for the uptake of technical processes. In particular, if public concern is aroused about a technology and/or a proposed new use of by?products, this can result in negative publicity for companies, delays in obtaining regulatory approval, increased litigation, substantial reputational damage and, in extreme cases, loss of the 'social license to operate'. The challenge for the industry is to reduce the likelihood of this occurring in the future by improving its risk management and communication practices.

Publisher: The Parker Centre & CSRM

Region: Global

CITATION

Barclay, Mary Anne, Franks, Daniel M. and Pattenden, Catherine (2009) Risk communication: A framework for technology development and implementation in the mining and minerals processing industries : Final report Brisbane, QLD Australia: Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining, The Sustainable Minerals Institute, University of Queensland & Parker Cooperative Research Centre for Integrated Hydrometallurgy Solutions

Risk Communication: A Framework for Technology Development and Implementation in the Mining and Minerals Processing Industries
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