Report exposes Mining Companies

…on poor environmental management

A recent study by the Environmental Protection Agency-AKOBEN Report has revealed that almost all the major mining companies could not measure up to environmental standards in their operations in the country.

Major firms such as AngloGold Ashanti, Newmont Ghana, Ghana Bauxite Company Limited-scored RED (poor) in the seven category final rating.

The ratings measured the environmental performance of 11 major mining firms and 49 manufacturing firms on how they met the legal requirements in hazardous waste management, toxic releases and non-toxic releases and monitoring and reporting. The rest are environmental best practice, community complaints and corporate social responsibility.

This means that all the major mining companies could not meet the requirements of LI 1652, and create environmental risks from toxics and hazardous waste mismanagement and discharges.

The AKOBEN programme is an environmental performance rating and disclosure initiative of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), under the auspices of the Ministry of Environment Science and Technology of the government of Ghana.
Under the AKOBEN initiative, the environmental performance of mining and manufacturing operations is assessed using a five-colour rating scheme.

The five colours are GOLD (excellent), GREEN (very good), BLUE (good), ORANGE (unsatisfactory) and RED (poor). The Environmental Performance Rating tracked the adherence to environmental standards of manufacturing and mining firms in the country from January to December in 2009.

AngloGold Ashanti, one of the companies which performed abysmally in the ratings, however, welcomed the report, stating that it acknowledges that the company is supportive of government’s desire to independently assess the performance of the mining companies.

“We will continue to cooperate with government agencies and bodies in their work in this regard”, the company noted

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