The human right to water has recently been recognized by both the United Nations General Assembly and the Human Rights Council. As the mining industry interacts with water on multiple levels, it is important that these interactions respect the human right to water. Currently, a disconnect exists between mine site water management practices and the recognition of water from a human rights perspective. It has been argued that the Minerals Council of Australia Water Accounting Framework can be used to strengthen the connection between water management and human rights. This article extends this connection through the use of a Social Water Assessment Protocol (SWAP). The SWAP is a scoping tool consisting of a set of questions classified into taxonomic themes under leading topics with suggested sources of data that enable mine sites to better understand the local water context in which they operate. Three of the themes contained in the SWAP - gender, Indigenous peoples and health - are discussed to demonstrate how the protocol may be useful in assisting mining companies to consider their impacts on the human right to water.

Publisher: Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal

CITATION

Nina Collins & Alan Woodley (2013): Social water assessment protocol: a step towards connecting mining, water and human rights, Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, 31:2, 158-167

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Social water assessment protocol: a step towards connecting mining, water and human rights
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Social water assessment protocol: a step towards connecting mining, water and human rights