Demonstrating Environmental Responsibility

Case Study
Conserving Madagascar’s Precious Orchids
Located off the coast of Africa, the island of Madagascar is home to more than 1,000 species of rare – and often endangered – orchids. As part of our commitment to biodiversity management, we systematically survey the Ambatovy mine footprint for orchids. Once identified, they are individually catalogued and conserved for future re-establishment after mining operations cease.
We understand that mining and energy production involve disturbing the natural environment. Our overriding approach to demonstrating environmental responsibility is to avoid impacts wherever we reasonably can, and ensure that any we create are minimized, managed and remediated. In this way, we can limit our impacts, while seeking innovative ways to support environmental protection.
In 2015, we:
  • Established partnership agreements with Conservation International and Asity Madagascar (which is associated with BirdLife International) for the conservation management of Ambatovy’s biodiversity offset areas
  • Received Ambatovy’s environmental certificate from the project lending syndicate in recognition of fully conforming with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) Environmental and Social Performance Standards
  • Responded to one high-severity environmental incident involving a leak from the Ambatovy tailings management facility that resulted in elevated levels of manganese in local water ponds; corrective actions include: building up tailings beaches to reduce the manganese before discharge, installing a permanent pumping house and providing potable water to nearby communities on a temporary basis