Are Sustainability Reports Designed for Local Communities?
Unable to attend the GRI conference in Amsterdam, I watched the many taped snippets of the Mining & Metals Sector Supplement session on YouTube. One take away from a presentation by First Peoples Worldwide suggests that GRI reports are important but also that they are not designed with local communities as target audience in mind.The session around GRI's
The presentation by the representative of
For example, GRI reports may contain companies’ approaches to indigenous peoples issues and may include a discussion on concepts such as ‘Free Prior Informed Consultation/Consent’ or FPIC (see also my previous blog here). However, the presenter also recognized that GRI reports do not provide readily accessible information to local communities and are not particularly useful to help with the engagement process.
An additional challenge probably includes that many problems are seeded further ‘upstream’. By that I mean activities conducted (or left out) during exploration and development stages of mining projects. Mistakes at this stage can fuel unrealistic expectations and other long-term social conflicts. There are precious few sustainability reporters amongst this ‘upstream’ group of exploration and junior mining companies, although the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (
Will GRI’s drive towards integrated financial and sustainability reporting further remove local communities as target audiences of sustainability reports?