New GRI Mining & Metals Supplement – No Help for Application Level Determination

On March 7 2010, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) launched its Mining & Metals Sector Supplement (MMSS) during the Prospector & Developer Association of Canada (PDAC) convention in Toronto. Can MMSS indicators change approach to determination of GRI Application Levels of sustainability reports?

PLEASE NOTE THAT GRI CHANGED ITS APPROACH - please read updated blog entry here. 

The overview statement in the GRI Mining Metals Sector Supplement (page 2) states that

 “All of the sector-specific disclosures and performance indicators are considered as core (these are labeled as MM1, MM2, MM3, etc.), and should be included in the content index, in addition to other items reporting organizations choose to report on.”

However, discussions with GRI staff helped clarfiy that these sector specific indicators should not be counted twoards “Core Indicators” which are the ones used to determine GRI Application Levels. One of GRI's FAQs points out the following:

"20. Can we declare Application Level C when we have reported on 10 Indicators from Guidelines and/or the Sector Supplement?  No, the reporter should be able to report on at least 10 Performance Indicators from the G3 Guidelines and should aim to progressively implement all Sector Supplement Performance Indicators. NB: Only Application Level A asks for reporting on all Sector Supplement Performance Indicators. This situation also applies to Application Level B."

According to GRI, there were 84 sustainability reporters in the mining sector in 2009. The distribution of their application levels is shown further below. Do you think that the new GRI Mining & Metals Sector Supplement will change the reporting practice in the mining sector – or are there other drivers which are likely to have a bigger impact in the sector?

You may also be interested in reading these previous blog posts:

Size Matters – at least for CSR/GRI Reporting in Mining Sector

Sustainability Reporting – Misperceptions & Barriers

GRI Application Levels in Metals & Mining Sector (2009, n=84)

A+ 24%
A 8%
B+ 18%
B 12%
C+ 14%
C 2%
Undeclared 22%