Rio Tinto provides an update report on the construction, management and monitoring of its tailings facilities, including independent reviews.
All Rio Tinto managed facilities are subject to three levels of governance and assurance, as follows:
- First level of assurance takes place at the asset itself with the main tenets being effective facility design, comprehensive operational controls and regular reviews. Independent reviews of the operations must be conducted at least every two years
- Second level is assurance to the Rio Tinto standard through periodic business conformance audits and technical reviews, supported by Rio Tinto’s Surface Mining Centre of Excellence
- Third level of assurance is independent of site management and normally conducted by third parties
All Rio Tinto managed facilities, whether active or inactive, have an external engineer of record or design engineer.
To align with guidance from the International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM) some of the information previously disclosed has been updated. This includes limiting the status classifications of facilities to ‘active’, ‘inactive’ or ‘closed’ and ensuring the construction method specified describes the most recent type of embankment raise on the facility. In addition, following a comprehensive review of Rio Tinto’s global operations by the company’s technical teams, some facilities have been reclassified resulting in some tailings facilities being added to the list and others removed.
All facilities are given a hazard classification in accordance with the regulatory or industry body that oversees tailings in each region or jurisdiction.
Hazard classifications are not a judgment on the condition of a facility or the likelihood of failure but on the potential consequence if a failure occurred.